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Don M

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Posts posted by Don M

  1. Thanks for all the replies---I ended up going to work, and though it was tough, I made it through. I have four days off now---which will be a good time to relax, have fun, and remember how much of a wonderful man my dad was.

    I suppose, however, I might be in my best interest to not go to work on the anniversary of his death...January 5. We'll see...one step at a time. :-)

    I am so glad that he was this much of an inspiration to some of you...the fact that he has been such sort of makes it so that he's not really gone.

  2. Hi all. I see that my mom, sister, and sister in law...and perhaps a few others have posted things about my dad, Don M, who passed away last January.

    Apparently I have created my own account, but I can't, for the life of me, remember my username, nor my password, so I hope it's okay that I'm using my dad's account.

    I really felt the need to post on here today---September 3rd, because today my Dad would have been 65 years old.

    My name is Sarah, and I am the youngest daughter of Don. It brings me great joy to read how much everyone loved my Dad on this site. I know it certainly helped my father through his journey with lung cancer...and as I've learned, he helped many of you, too.

    Today I am debating whether or not I should go to work. I've already wept sufficiently this morning...and yet, I know my Dad would have told me that I should go to work. I'd much rather stay home and grieve---yet also celebrate my Dad's life. He was a great man and a wonderful father. I'm sure that those of you who knew him would agree. :-)

  3. Hi you all.

    I kind of withdrew a bit in the last month. I have not been on line much. Also, it has been physically difficult for me to sit at the pc because of the mets. There is still some residual pain even after the fenatyl patch and breakthrough meds are applied. I have found a way to support my right leg though, and use a chair next to me for a mouse platform. That way I can sit with my right leg fully extended and elevated a bit.

    I completed radiation to the mets in my back and hip last Friday. They say it might take a month or more before I notice the results. I seem to get by now with the fenatyl patch and oxycodone for breakthrough. I hope the radiation will allow me to cut back on the pain meds.

    I have noticed an improvement in my lung function. There was a point where I could not walk much further than 4 feet without having serious breathing issues. Now, I can go to the kitchen and back to my room. I got a wheelchair the other day. It has been handy for treatment trips. I can also use it around the house if I want to make a long trip like out to the front room. I think I may have some more improvement coming in my lung function.

    I signed up for hospice yesterday. They offer a lot of convenience. I have met and visited with my RN case manager and she seems ok. I don’t know how much longer I have, but right now I am satisfied and grateful for each day and can find “quality” in each day. I will stick around as long as I can just to see what happens and take pictures of the grandkids.

    Don M

  4. Thanks for your support everyone:

    t's like it will be a good hospice, not a bad one. It is like retiring from a second career. I hear they have a good home hospice service here. I intend to go sign up soon and then I will have a lot the care and expectations in place when I need it say 3 or 4 months from now. Right now I feel pretty good except that I am tehtered to the oxygen concentrator.

    Don M

  5. It was 5 years ago on halloween that I found out about my lung mass. The day before this last halloween, i found out that my doctors are recommending hospice as a result of my last scan. I am inclined to agree with them.

    Don M

  6. Hospice

    I had another lung function crash this past Tuesday. I got out of the hospital today. I went on antibiotics and prednisone. I had pneumonia. I have to be on oxygen 24 7 for now. I could still get some more function back. They did a ct scan and found that my cancer is spreading and growing. The big tumor is on the move again. I have 2 new lesions on my liver. It is apparently in my backbone and ribs. The small tumors are growing. The palliative care doctor at the hospital had a talk with my oncologist and they agree that any more treatment would cause more harm than good. I did not tolerate the last chemo well. I am inclined to agree with them and will probably enroll in home care hospice in a few weeks. I want to consult with my oncologist first on some items and I may run it all by the folks at Swedish.

    Mean while the family is fixing me up a nice big room down stairs so I won’t have to go up and down the stairs any more. I think I will like it there better.

    Don M

  7. Welcome Lisa. As soon as you start chemo, things will be more routine for you and less scary. chemo these days is very doable. the fact that you have had the surgery means you have a good chance for a cure.

    Don M

  8. Welcome Wattle.

    Since there is no spread to any other area of your mom's body, I think she may still have a shot at long term survival. They may want to do Prophylactic Cranial Irradiation (PCI) on her brain when she is done with cyberknife (CK). It is a low dose treatment that is used to kill off any mets that cannot be seen. One can still do ck after PCI if another met shows up.

    Don M

  9. Hi Chrissy. Once your mom is done with chemo, she may be able to have cyberknife (ck) so as to shrink the big tumor away from the aorta. If you live in the USA there are many facilities that have ck equipment.


    I guess the way I cope is to focus on the next step and not to wrap myself up in a doctor’s prognosis. I guess your mom will just have to sort out her feelings about having cancer and how it will affect you. Maybe you both could talk about it from time to time…that is what I do with my wife and adult children… but mostly I just focus on the day at hand.

    Don M

  10. Linda I am glad your mom is doing well and I hope your aunt does as well as your mom. At least the 3 of you together should be able too support one another a lot.

    I must have tried to quit smoking 10 times or more before i finally did on my 40th birthday in 1984. I think turning 40 was what helped me make up my mind to quit.

    Don M

  11. Hi shrimp.

    It is good that you and your family members get together and support one another in the grieving process. I am sure that other people may isolate themselves.

    I don't post as much as I used to either. It has been almost 5 years for me and I am still dealing with my cancer. Sometimes I just don't feel like posting much, but I at least scan the posts since last visit.

    Don M

  12. Hi Maryanne; I had 4 rounds of alimta after some image guided radiation I had 2 years ago. I tolerated it ok, but I was tired most of the time. I think follow treatment after ck is a good idea. If they do a PET/CT scan, they will monitor the suv. If the suv goes down over time, that is a sign that it is working. Alimta did not do much for me. I hope it serves Joel well.

    Don M

  13. Hi Dessertthorn. Did you have the results of the scan read to you? Usually a pulmonolgist gets involved if a bronchosopy is going to be done. They will probably try to get a tissue sample to see if whatever they found on the scan is malignant or not.

    I used to go to Seattle for treatment when I was getting radiation treatment. I also got second opinions there from Dr. West at the Swedish Cancer Institute. I always got same day results for the scans I had there. If you can do it, you should go to Swedish Cancer Institute with your scan and things should go a lot faster for you.

    Don M

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