Laughter is the Best Medicine

Laughter is the Best Medicine

Saturday, June 5, 2010

CT scan results are tears this time

In late May, TL had a CT scan of her abdomen and pelvis. The purpose of the scan was to determine what effect the Taxotere chemotherapy drug TL started on 2/16 had on the cancer in her liver. For the first time in months, TL's nurse delivered the CT scan results, which in our case has customarily meant the news was not dreadful. The nurse reported "mild improvement" in the liver. Specifically, the nurse reported fewer lesions and a decent decrease in the size of the largest lesion. Three words: we'll take it.

Last Tuesday TL reported to Huntsman Cancer Institute for her weekly Taxotere dose. However, an unfortunate side effect of Taxotere is water retention, and TL had about 17 pounds of water retention at the time for her appointment. Three words: no more taxotere. TL is now taking Taxol, which she took in 2006 when she was first diagnosed. Taxol was no fun then - causes debilitating neuropathy and finger/toenail changes - but it should be better this time around because TL's docs are not pairing Taxol with anything else. They may also be administering a lower dose. In any event, here's hoping Taxol follows in Taxotere's footsteps in reducing the overall cancer load in TL's bodies.

We'd like to take this time to thank friends, family, and kind people who don't really even know us but have supported us anyway. Your support is the best medicine TL and our family has received.


TL, Scribe, Gabrielle, and Ryan

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Two weeks of "meh" followed by a weekend of me

"Meh" - three letters; one syllable; looks misspelled, but it ain't. When someone asks "How are you doing?" and sticks around for the answer, "meh" is how you respond when you're less than great, less than good, better than poor, and much better than lousy.

For the last two weeks, I've been "meh." Taste is off. Energy is a bit low. Hand inexplicably went numb a couple of times (for your Utah county people, "inexplicably" means something happened and you don't know why). On the other hand, had dinner with my grade school boyfriend (scribe: he's a cool cat, even if he and the wife used to sing Supertramp on the bus while giving each other googley eyes). Kid sister came into town from Seattle to accompany me on a weekend yoga retreat. No kids or hubby on said yoga retreat. Had lunch with Cheryl MacDonald (scribe: sp?) at Faustina. In the tug of war between the above, I've had two weeks of "meh."

My kid sister, Julie, and I took I-80 east past Park City en route to the second, maybe third annual yoga retreat with my dear friend, Amy Conn. The yoga retreat caters to persons with cancer and those that love them. It's an incredible experience. I'll report on the details when I return.

Happy Mother's Day to every woman who has the opportunity to care for a child (or children) she has brought into the world. Happy Mother's Day to every woman who has loved and/or showed compassion for a child not her own. And a particular Happy Mother's Day to every woman who has ever nurtured Ryan and/or Gabrielle. They are the caring, warm, tender, and spirited children they are because they are surrounded by people who love them.


TL, Scribe, Gabrielle (fatigued after four Annie, Jr. shows in three nights), Ryan (ditto)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Bring on the sexy

(Scribe at the helm...for, well, worse).

Tuesday's chemotherapy appointment went well...nothing remarkable one way or another.

Tuesday's weigh-in, unfortunately, was remarkable. Blasted chemotherapy drug causes TL to retain water, so she didn't make weight. As a result, she will not be fighting Brock Lesnar at UFC 114. Instead, she will be fighting..............................................................with......................................................................................compression stockings!

Picture this: toe-to-groin length white nylons with an awesome hole by the ball of TL's footie. Unfortunately for TL, the stockings are not made of nylon. Oddly, they're made of chain link metal, you know, like the kind British soldiers wore in the Battle of Gettysburg. Rumor has it that a resourceful and speedy page for the British gathered all the chain link metal worn by his fallen comrades, locked it in the facility where the British make scampi-flavored Fishermen's Friends, then bequeathed it to his posterity for their future use. Now his posterity sells the chains to medical supply companies on eBay. Amazing!

Enough about the metal...let's talk about how TL looks in the stockings. I've got one word: HOT! And I mean really hot, as in "caliente," said like a bad soap actress would say it for a Telemundo audience, all while pursing her lips together like LaFawnduh did for Kip on Napoleon Dynamite.

Did I mention TL is glad she's in Boston? (Scribe: what's that supposed to mean?)



Saturday, April 10, 2010

Another week, another miracle

We're calling it how we see it.

For the fifth straight week, TerriLyn's labs have improved or remained within acceptable range. Additionally, and most significantly, her "tumor marker" lab (which provides a rough measurement of how her cancer is behaving in her body) went waaaaaaaay down relative to the last several measurements. Her medical team interprets this result to mean the chemotherapy is working.

Another week, another miracle. Each of you and your contributions of faith, prayers, service, positve energy, well wishes, hugs, kisses (scribe: easy now), calls, text messages, and friendship are a huge part of the miracle.


TL and family

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Quick update for 3/24

Scribe at the helm...

For the third straight week, TerriLyn's labs were excellent - white cells, hemoglobin, and red cells high enough to administer chemo and liver enzymes (which elevate when cancer damages bones and the liver) close to "normal" (as in healthy person normal). Obviously, we are pleased that TerriLyn's chemotherapy seems to be working.

Also working is all the prayers, fasting, positive vibes, support, service, good thoughts, well wishes, and the rest that you send our way. Please, please, please understand how much we appreciate you. Literally, you are keeping this family afloat.


TL, Scribe, Gabrielle, and Ryan

Sunday, March 14, 2010

An overdue summary of the goings on since last post

On February 3, 2010, we learned TerriLyn's cancer had spread to her liver.
Very sad and disheartened were we. In fact,
Everybody who loves and cares for us was sad. Nevertheless,
Resilient we are; resilient we must be. Ready we are for the next phase of this journey.
Damned chemotherapy (different drugs).
Ugly birthday - chemo on number 41!
Exciting birthday weekend with Karla and Teri from Seattle! Then...

Sucky hospitalization due to too few white cells.
Ucky thrush from mouth to...uh...south.
Maybe this chemo does more harm than good. Then...
March 9, 2010: normal white, improved red/hemogl., decreased alk phos = chemo worked!
A few adjustments (lower chemo dose, more frequent infusions) leads to...
Renewed hope, reason for celebration, reason to thank...

Thanks to each of you for your encouragement, hugs, tears, smiles, text messages, telephone calls, incredible meals, packages, friendship, love, and amazing contribution to the well-being of our family. We love and appreciate you tremendously.


TL and family (via scribe)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Verse about cancer being perverse

(Adam at the helm...for better or for worse).

Normally, when you've done something right or well or on special occasions, something good follows. For example, if Gabrielle or Ryan behave well (or "good" for you BYU fans or members of the Jessop or Kingston clans), they earn a trip to the toy store or a small treat. If the scribe does well at work, he earns a raise. If it's the scribe and TerriLyn's anniversary, scribe gets some (tiramisu).

Yesterday, my white counts had improved (you know, gotten better), so I got..............(giddy with excitement as I?)...............chemotherapy! Woohoo! Oh, wait. Huh!?! Instead of chocolates, roses, pad thai, or high fives, I got chemotherapy?

Cancer is perverse!