B is for Beware
Because this Blog is Bubbling over in silly B-Babble :)
B is also for Blood cancer Biopsy results Below
B is for a cute Bucket list Buy I spied
B is for my new 1974 Baby Blue Bug
B is for this Blast to the past Beetle I Bought in a flash
B is for this Bug Being Brought to me
Blasting from West Palm Beach to me
B is for Bursting with nostalgic excitement
But C is for Cancer that’s now suddenly Back
But this Bewitching Bug cheered and distracted me, as
Bummer Biopsy news confirmed
Boo-hoo, Blasted cancer is Back
for her trek from Florida to California
until we meet for the first time next week!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
to the main reason you came to read this blog:
AND TREATMENT PLANNING:
Below are my (brief) medical numerical details, which summarize my blood work and biopsy stats from diagnosis Dec 2009, to my current Sept 2013 out of remission stats. So dang it, after all my 2010 chemo, powerful crazymaking steroids, July 2010 high dose chemo, autologous stem cell harvest and transplant, and year and half maintenance chemo, all which gave me remission!!! … until earlier this year, Myeloma decided to escalate and end my remission party
I’ve had 4
delightful, make that awfully painful, Bone Marrow Biopsies since late 2009, which show the level of Myeloma cancer in my blood plasma:
Biopsy #1: Dec 2009 = 67% cancer, at shocking diagnosis
Biopsy #2: June 2010 = 10% cancer, after 6 months intensive Revlimid, Dex Steroids, Cytoxan chemo
Biopsy #3: Aug 2010 = 0% cancer, after hospitalization, high dose Melphalan chemo and auto stem cell transplant
Biopsy #4: Sept 2013 = 15% cancer, after being off maintenance Revlimid chemo for only a year :(
I am IGA Myeloma, so one of the important Myeloma cancer markers is my Immunoglobulins:
Normal range (measured by Kaiser/City of Hope) blood tests = 70 – 400mg/dL
Dec 2009 = 5600+mg/dL (wow! I was sure a sickie, and didn’t know it!)
Aug 2010 – Oct 2012 = very low, sub normal #s as my immune systems battles back after transplant
Dec 2012 – Apr 2013 = FINALLY in the NORMAL range!!! (but sure short-lived!)
June 2013 = spiked out of normal range, but no panic yet
Aug 2013 = spiked more, officially determined to be out of remission
Sept 2013 = edging close to 1400, which is over 3 times the high end of normal
Another important Myeloma marker is the M-protein, or M-spike via Protein Electrophoresis:
Diagnosis: Dec 2009 = 4.30gm/dL
During remission: Aug 2010 – early 2013, not detected at all!!
Official M-spike comes back: July 2013
Rising monthly: Sept 2013 = .96gm/dL
|Such pretty cells for such a deadly cancer|
So what does all this mean?
1- I am not a happy cancer camper
2- I am so shocked Myeloma came back so soon
3- I am a very happy babyblue bug owner :)
4- I am very grateful to have had all the fantastic medical treatments I have had, that saved my life!!
5- I wrongly assumed I would have remission status for years and years and years and years and years and years…
6- I am extremely grateful beyond words to still be here and have the amazing life I have, even though my energy and ability to be “me” is a fraction of what it used to be
7- I will be back in treatment asap, back on chemo most likely this, or next month
8- I am still partially dominating Myeloma, as fortunately my Doctors never stopped monitoring me closely, and my Out of Remission status was identified FAST!
9- Even though the cancer has come roaring back, and much quicker than we anticipated, at least it was caught this time, in a still treatable stage!
10- I am grateful for so many and so much, that is still so good in my life!
11- If you love me, don’t share your germs and cooties with me! No hand-shaking, no kissing; “air hugs” only please! Myeloma is a cancer of the immune system, which means… duh… I’m “immune compromised”, and can get sick easily, and haven’t been well since mid-August
12- Looks like I will be in treatment for life, and on some sort of chemo forever
13- Lucky (unlucky) #13… just MY luck, Myeloma is an incurable cancer…
And finally, you may be wondering, what is my “sudden” interest and excitement in an old 1974 VW Beetle?
It’s a fun bucket list blast to my past, as my first car was a 1972 twin of this one. I always thought it would be super groovy to find a replica of my beloved baby blue bug, and so when I found out I was fully out of remission, and the cancer was back with a vengeance… that truly was a huge wake up call to me.
That “NOW” is of the essence, and I could no longer put ANYTHING off.. previously thinking I still had all the time in the world!!! Ha! My new motto: Think it… Do it… Now!!!
Next blog, I’ll post a picture of me with my BabyBlue, driving to chemo treatments!! ahahahaaaaa…..