It’s been a while since the last official Chuck-date, but it’s been for all good reasons. He’s been recovering from chemotherapy (and let me tell you, chemo kicks some serious ass so it requires a lot of recovery) and growing hair and starting to run again and regaining his taste in food and wine. So it’s been a busy few months!
Last Monday Chuck had a PET scan at City of Hope – his first checkup post-chemo and the fatty necrosis scare. We spent the past week in a state of increasingly high anxiety once again playing the always fun “what if” game – what if the cancer’s back? – what if Chuck needs to go through chemo again…you get the idea. You know it’s bad when both of us were taking Adivan to get to sleep at night.
So today, once again we drove the familiar route to City of Hope, checked in, went to get blood drawn, said hello to all of the nurses then went in to see Dr. Nade, She came in and after asking how Chuck was feeling (any pain, any fever, any numbness or tingling? no numbness? really? none? the way she said that we thought for a minute that he was supposed to have numbness and tingling). She pulled up the PET scan, looked it all over, and said the magic words, “It’s all clear, you look fine.” It’s an indication of how tough we’ve gotten that we didn’t burst into tears at her words, though Chuck did pump his fist in the air when she turned her back.
As I write this, Chuck is in the treatment area getting his first maintenace round of Rituxan (the immunotherapy drug, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rituximab). He’ll get another PET scan in six months, and another dose of Rituxan in three months (and he’ll continue this cycle for at least 1-2 years). These visits will keep us honest and aware that we are in an ongoing battle with a insidious opponent. But with luck, determination, Dr. Nade and the City of Hope, we plan on ultimately winning the war. And hopefull as time passes we’ll get a bit better at handling the lead up to the visits.
Life is good. We feel so lucky to have such good friends and family who send us such positive energy. We feel so lucky, period.