Posts Tagged ‘Valentines’

Round 15: The year in review

December 31, 2014

The last day of the year I am at the infusion center of UofC for treatment.  One last hurrah for the year, and then another one next week to start the new year.  I am sitting here again at the waiting room and it has not changed: Patients still waiting for their treatment or have their vital signs checked.  It will be the same even if it is the start of the new year, 2015.

As they got my vital sign, I had to smile because my weight had increased: plus three pounds.  Ooopps.  Must be all that Christmas cookies.  Ho…ho…ho!  Oh well, I will work that out at the gym.  Also, it will soon be the start of the running season again.

2014 was a good year for me.  For cancer survivors, each year is a good year but 2014 was also memorable.  Let’s see:

  • February.  Mom was with me until she went back to Manila with my brother, Raul.  She got to spend Valentines with us.
  • April.  My wife and I went to Kona, Hawaii for the first time and had a blast.  I still dream of going back.
  • June.  Had a successful emobolization of my spleen at MD Anderson Houston, TX.  This corrected my low platelet count issue.
  • July.  I got accepted to the clinical trial at UofC and my tumor so far is stable
  • October.  Fractured my right foot while training for the NYC marathon.  That sucks.  I ended up deferring the marathon for 2015.
  • November.  Had an unscheduled visit to Manila to see Mom and family.  I am very thankful for this opportunity.
  • December.  Completed the Simbang Gabi nine-day novena mass.  Also, I spent a few days with my sister in Canada with my brother Raul again.

Listing all these events made me feel so blessed and thankful.  2015 starts tomorrow and I look forward to whatever it has to offer for me.

Happy New Year!


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Happy Valentine’s

Happy Valentine’s

February 14, 2011

checked if I created a posting last year for Valentine’s Day. The only entry I found was this: ‘I am almost out of the hole again‘ dated February 15, 2010. Ironically, I find myself on the eve of ‘entering’ the hole again. Tomorrow is my monthly chemo maintenance treatment.  I don’t let it get to me anymore. It is part of me or until my doctor and I decide to stop my maintenance.

There are competing feelings on this: My mom prays that it stops while my wife hesitates because she is afraid of my cancer coming back for the third time. Both have good intentions and both I dearly love. This Valentine’s I feel their love intensely and it helps me to continue on. I know my cancer is just lurking and hiding, waiting to let my guard down. Where are you?

So I called up my oncologist’s office to find out my CEA (carcinoembronic antigen) level or tumor count from my last blood test, January 25.  (NOTE: They look at CEA as an indicator of cancer activity)

Its 1.90” Brenda said.

Thanks. Can you fax me a copy?” I replied.

Whew. That’s a relief. The threshold is 2.5, so I am within the limits. I have been wondering about my CEA level for sometime now. The news gives me temporary relief. Temporary because trending is more important. I know how this works because of my experience when it came back the second time in 2009.  It took less than a year.  It needs to stabilized until August on my one-year anniversary.

Tomorrow I will find out when I have another blood test before my chemo. Do I feel lucky?

Yes…at least tonight. It’s Valentine’s Day, right? Honey, I am home! 😮

Happy Valentine’s everybody.


PS: I have been running not consistently and only have 12 miles to show for the week.  This week is practically shot out since it is chemo week.

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I am almost out of the hole again.

February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine’s to everybody.

I am almost out of the hole.  I completed my third chemo treatment last Thursday, February 11.  The next day, Friday, we tried something new to get me back on my feet right away.  I normally get a booster shoot (Neulasta) one day after my treatment to help me build my white blood cells.  (Note: chemotherapy kills cancer cell including healthy cells.  When white blood cells go down your body’s immunity weakens making you susceptible to other sickness and infection).

Along my booster shoot, I was given one liter of vitamin infusion again.  It helped while it lasted but at night I still got the chills, nausea, feverish feeling, non-stop coughing fits, loss of appetite, and lost of hair.  I need to cut my hair really short to hide the patches.  My kids wanted to shave my head but not on Valentine’s weekend.

My wife can see that I sometimes lose my spirit too no matter how I hide it.  They are doing everything they can medically to get me back on my feet and it is up to me to standup and carry on.  With difficulty, I went to my yoga class yesterday (Saturday).  I think they were surprise to see my walk through like a ghost all bundled up and head covered.  My daughter drove me to class; I need to get my spirits up because I was draining it from those close to me.  I am glad I went.  My body needed to stretch and work away the toxins.  My yoga-mates fed my spirits but I struggled with fits of hacking cough.  I hope I did not disturbed them too much but I was glad to see them.

Mom called to greet me happy valentine’s and told me of her plans to arrive in Chicago from the Manila.  I can’t stop her from coming but I know she is getting stressed.  She turns 78 this year.

The plan is to recover this coming week.  I am going for high calorie food, like pizza as Chris said.  Runners know this as an efficient food; compact but loaded with calories and it fits my shrinking appetite.  There might be a big challenge ahead and will tell you later.  For now, I will enjoy the rest of my Valentine’s day.


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