2019-12-02/31 Living with Cancer Day 999-1028

First the good news, I am back blogging daily starting tomorrow. I am not counting today’s entry as if is more of a recap of most of December.

As to the bad news, I won’t provide a detailed recap for the missing entries, 2-31 December, instead I will provide a general recap of my 21 days at UCSF Medical Center @ Parnassus Heights.

I was admitted to UCSF on Thanksgiving (28 November) and released 21 days later (18 December).

I blogged about the first four days, on the fifth I stopped, it was the day I received at 9:00 AM my last chemo infusion. Phase one was over and I survived it, my heart did not give up.

Now that my system was blown away, the next phase was to put my clean Stem Cells back into my body. It will be stage two of the treatment lasting anywhere from 10 to 15 days. This treatment cycle will be rougher than the first one and the question is can my body survive it for my CBC numbers to go down, the sign that the Chemo infusion works.mOn day 15, 12 December the CBC numbers had reached rock bottom, phase two was over and I survived that one as well.

The last step was to make sure the numbers now go up proofing my body is able to use the new stem cells to regenerate the WBCs and Platelets by itself, if it can do so I will be released. On day 21, 18 December, the UCSF team was satisfied that the numbers were staying in range and I could be released. We returned home that day.

The first day at home was a bit rough, during the first night all my joints started to hurt so much that I had to take my breakthrough pain killer, it reduces the pain not totally, only by about 50%, this lasted 3 days before the pain was almost gone and I could stop using the pain killer.

Since being released from UCSF I had 2 blood tests, 23 and 30 Dec (Day 26 & 33), which showed that the numbers stayed stable or increased, much as the Platelets, that from 36 the day I was discharged to 88 and now 114; a clear sign that the new stem cells are working.

Yesterday’s Followup with Doctor Choi was positive, she is ready to start treatment again, but not until I had my appointment with UCSF on this 3rd Friday. Both Doctor Shah and Doctor Choi have to agree on what the next treatment should be.

Getting home before Christmas was great since my son, grandson and his girlfriend came for five days to be together for Christmas. They had to leave on Christmas Day. We celebrated Christmas the German way, having our Christmas Dinner on Heiligabend (Christmas Eve), after dinner we opened our presents, one at a time, going around the circle, and finally the evening ended with us watching a Christmas movie, we had so much family fun that we will from now on celebrate Christmas the German way. Please note this decision was taken by five none-German, I stayed neutral.

Today was a so-so day, it started off good, I had slept well and had a great breakfast that Dianne had prepared. We went to Concord’s Sunvalley Shopping Center to first shop some before having lunch at ‘Lucille’s Smokehouse BBQ’, thanks to a gift card I got from a Doctor Friend. Getting out of the car I started to have lower back pain that started to slow me in walking through the mall, lucky for me there were chairs that I could use to sit down to wait for Dianne and Denise to do some shopping. After we were done we went to Lucille’s Smokehouse BBQ for lunch. Waiting for ordering and getting our lunch took some time during which my shoulder pain grow strong in addition to my earlier back pain. It influenced eating my pork-shredded sandwich.

Before going home we dropped by ‘The Veranda’ shopping mall across the freeway (I-680) for the girls to visit ‘World Market’ and ‘T.J.Maxx’. Our final stop was in at the end of our trip at ‘Home Goods’ in Brentwood.

After we got home Dianne hydrated me since my energy level was low and we have done it the last two days. I did feel my urge getting better allowing me to write the long posting.

That’s it for now and the end of 2019, which was not a bad year. However, I wish for all of us a better 2020.

To all Einen Guten Rutsch in das Neue Jahr – Erfolg, Glück und Gesundheit für 2020

In English Happy New Year, all the Best for 2020