Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Going to Denver for Stents Tomorrow

My gastroenteroligist is unable to do my stents - he only does them if they are real simple, but the blockages are way up where the liver bile duct branches. So we are headeded tomorrow to get stent implants in my bile duct on Friday. They will do this by going down through my throat. If that doesn't work, t hey'll go in through the ribs.

I'm sorry that I haven't called anyone from Denver to hook up, but we're not sure what to expect. We're trying to get the American Cancer Society to get us some discounted rooms, but it's short notice, so we may just stay at Motel 6, and try to see Ian for dinner one night. I may have to stay over for observation.

I have to get a blood transfusion in Grand Juctiion tomorrow at 9:30 am to get my platelets up. Then, we'll head to Denver and spend the next two nights there.

If you need to reach me, call Ian, my stepson at 303-368-7756 at home. You may reach his mother Grace. I don't think she'll mind if anyone calls. Or try Motel 6 in Aurora.

I may have to stay one night at the hospital for observation.

I am slowly working my way through e-mails and I know I owe a lot of you responses. I'll try to get caught up soon.

I have scoot, much to do before we leave for Grand Junction at 7am tomorrow.

Just up here in Colorado, going to the doctor almost every day.

Sincerely, Caroline

Thursday, October 25, 2007

I Am Jaundiced

I have a lot to catch up on but the most recent thing is that I really had a hard time after my last FOLFOX on Wednesday, Oct. 17th. I started noticing my eyes turning yellow on Sunday. It appears I have a bile duct blockage and will need a stent soon. I saw Dr. Kane, a specialist from Denver yesterday. She said some tumors may have grown in my liver and are squeezing the bile duct or I may have a tumor in the bile duct itself. I was so tired this weekend that I slept a whole bunch. I got mouth sores really bad - it was hard to talk, eat, or drink.

Dr. Kane is recommending that I not do FOLFOX next Wednesday, Oct. 31st. She is also recommending seeing a gastroenterologist and possibly some other doctors in Denver for ERCP and some interventional radition therapy such as the SIRT spheres.

I had an ultrasound on my liver yesterday which was inconclusive.

We have had several snows here but the last one was on a Sunday when I couldn't move, so it was nice to watch the snow fall. But the last few days have been outrageously gorgeous - very sunny.

I must apologize - I owe phone calls and e-mails to several friends. I don't think I've checked my e-mail for two weeks.

Thank you everyone for your thoughts and prayers.

Just up here in Colorado soaking up the sunshine before too much more winter gets here.

Sincerely, Caroline

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Recent Photos

I'm still not realy good with this photo stuff.

Photo of me with woman in maroon sweats is Leslie Stoufer, my sister-in-law from Mississippi.
We're on the Durango-Silverton train. She heads a surgery unit in Jackson.

The photo of me with the woman in red hair is long time friend, Alana Miller. She lives in Colorado Springs and has an older daughter that graduated from Colorado School of Mines with an engineering degree, and her youunger daughter just graduated from Embry Midlin here in Prescott. She now has a job in Phoenix. These women are not afraid of science. Alana works for Barnes & Noble now and we always talk about books.

The picture of me in the cowboy shirt is with Jeff & Sharon Rowe and Pete & Barb Crossan.
They live in Salida, although Barb and Pete will be spending some time in Florida tis year.

The black lab puppy belongs to my friend Margaret Park Thomas and her daughter Taylor. He looks very much like a black lab we had growing up named Black Jack.

The yellow tabby in the bed is my constant companion Biscuit.

Next is Ruth, a breast cancer survivor whose hair has grown back. She's been a great inspiration to me. We were diagnosed with cancer about the same time.

Next is a photo of my husband Robert and stepson Ian in front of Ian's favorite vegetarian restaurant in Denver, The Watercourse. Ian is a vegan - doesn't eat any animal products.

Then we have a classic shot of the Durango-Silvetrton train which I rode last week with Robert's brother Mike and his wife Leslie. It was wonderful!

Lastly, I have a picture of Robert feeding a doe an apple off our apple tree. The deer and bears have really been wreaking havoc on that poor little tree.

All for now. Must scoot.

Sincerely, Caroline

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Having a Wonderful Time in Arizona

We met my sister Suzie and brother-in-law Al at Williams, AZ last Friday and rode the train to the south rim of the Grand Canyon. It was great fun. I do believe the view is prettier from the north rim. My sister Diane and I went to an air show on Saturday and had a blast. I'd never been to an air show before, and it was amazing what those guys did. Diane is a retired flight attendant for American Airlines where she worked for 31 years, and I flew for Reeve Aleutian Airways back in 1975 in Alaska. What an adventure it was.

I'm gettting a facial on Wednesday and a hair trim. Not that I have that much to cut, but I just want to shape my hair up. I'm passing from the Sinead O'Connor to the Mia Farrow "Rosemary's Baby" look. I do have super-puffy checks from the steroids and a good appetite. Last night my sister Suzie made chicken pot pie like my mother used to make.

Have I mentioned that I am able to give myself a shot now. If I don't do it for a few days, I start gettting afraid of it again. That phobia has a name, but I can't think of it right now.

During the book show, I did go see a specialist regarding SIRT spheres and am looking into that. That particular doctor suggested some other things as well such as tweaking chemo. The FOLFOX appears to have stablized the tumors in my liver, but it is hard on the soft tissues in my head - septum, esophagus, brain cells? I don't know how long I can do this regimen, so I'm being proactive and looking into some things for the future.

Anyway, if anyone wants to call me at my sister's house, the number is 928-776-0202. My cell phone is 970-596-1068, but it's not working great here.

Thanks again to everyone for your support. I think it keeps me going!

Just down here in Arizona enjoying some wide open spaces.

Sincerely, Caroline

PS My sisters and I went to see "3:10 to Yuma" and it was very good.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Headed to Arizona

We leave today for Arizona. We will be staying in Williams and ride the train to the Grand Canyon tomorrow. We rode the train from Durango to Silverton yestserday and it was wonderful. The aspens on the Durango side were perfect. We got some snow on Red Mountain Pass, so those leaves might not be as pretty. The cottonwoods in our valley are beautiful right now as are the aspens near Ridgway and just out of town here in Ouray. Oktoberfest is this weekend, but I will miss it this year. I'm going to go to my sister's house in Prescott for about 10 days. This will give Robert some respite, plus he has budget meetings three days next week for City Council.

Better run. Got lots of packing to do yet.

Just up here in Colorado, enjoying the fall, friends and family.

Sincerely, Caroline