Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Trick About Treatments

Hi Friends,

Good morning. Although I didn't sleep well, tossing and turning, trying not to vomit, I feel refreshed and excited to start the day. It's all because I have such wonderful friends who help me research my protocols, awesome neighbors who print up research for me and take me to my IV clinic, genius brain tumor fighters who help contact experts for more information, and my loving parents who find the best German clinics. I feel so connected, fighting amongst warriors who are battling by my side.

This morning, when I woke at 5:00 am, I was frustrated and exhausted. I'm only at 1,500 mg of the homemade sulforaphane pills and I'm barely keeping it down. The target dose is double that. I'm worried that I'm not getting enough to pack a wallop against Hermie. Dan keeps telling me that I'm doing the best that I can, and that I can only do so much. If I throw up it will ruin everything. I just don't know how I'm going to get the dose up. I always thought that I had a steel stomach, but now I realize that I'm nothing compared to my buddy who killed her astrocytoma. She is a crazy, amazing, insane warrior.

It makes me wonder, more and more, if I should seriously consider the dendritic cell therapy in Germany. It's expensive, and logistically tricky, but if I had endless funds I would absolutely hop on a plane and make it happen. The only reason that I haven't already started the treatment is because I'm trying to beat Hermie with more affordable tactics. The sulforaphane works, it has been proven by my friends, but dear God it is incredibly tough on your body. The plan has been for me to get up to the target dose of 3,000 mg per evening, and then sustain that for two months, then get an MRI to check results. If somehow Hermie continues to grow, we would adjust the protocol, and probably head on a plane and add dendritic cell therapy and hyperthermia to my treatment plan. Dendritic cell therapy is incredibly effective for brain cancer, and since I found the tumor specimen from my brain surgery, I know that they can target the vaccine to my specific cancer DNA.

The whole thing is tricky. I'm not sure how long I can go without sleep, and still keep healthy. Without sleep, constantly fighting painful intestines and discomfort, a person might go crazy. It's not much of a quality of life. Very tricky. But......not to forget.......it works. It comes down to one simple fact, "What are you willing to put up with to save your life?" Well, actually, it's not that simple, it's not just what would you do to save your life, it's also, "What are you willing to do to try and save money?" You don't want to go into debt $100,000 if you don't have to. If we were loaded, and $100,000 was just a drop in the bucket, I wouldn't worry about it. But since we don't have that kind of money, we have to be smart about the treatments that we choose. It's sad that tons of people die of cancer every single day because they can't afford the best treatments. It's sad, but it's just a ruthless fact.

When you have cancer you're playing a tightrope of deciding when to do the right treatments, can you push out the expensive options? If you push it too long you might die. You're constantly evaluating the risks (death), and benefits (saving money).

And, for the record, this past weekend I did get to do something fun! A group of girlfriends headed to Lake Chelan for a girl trip. It was very low key. The weather was cool, which was perfect for the hot tub. It was nice to get out of town. After vomiting (and such) on Thursday night, I took two nights off from the sulforaphane pills. It was glorious. It's fun to be one of the girls, goofing around, talking girl talk. I enjoyed pretending that things aren't so difficult. I loved not having to plan my days around pills & breakfast, pills & research, run around the lake, pills & lunch, pills, research & pills, pills, pills, pills, nausea & pain & fitful sleep. It's important to have some time to just be. Just exist.

1 comment:

  1. You just amaze me! You are so strong! I have no doubt that you will win this battle with Hermie! You go girl...! You can do this!


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