UPDATE: 6/30/19 Day 61

My stem cell transplant (SCT) was June 13th so now I am officially SCT + 17. I was discharged from the University of Washington almost 48 hours ago. I had a out-patient follow up visit yesterday. I am happy to say, as I was reminded during my visit yesterday, my course has been “uneventful.” In other words, there has been no complications, so far.

Yet, with that said, I will say without hesitation, these past few weeks have been the most miserable of my life, and I thought I was familiar with suffering. Maybe I am a wimp. But I just can’t imagine the torture those patients who did have complications have endured. I’ve met several of them. I knew that SCT was going to be hard, yet I may have under-estimated the symptoms.

Presently, we are back in the Pete Gross House, which is near the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. We are doing infusion for hydration each day in the apartment, as Denise takes on a nursing role.

The major symptoms of the SCT have been very painful cramping and diarrhea. In the beginning it was as many as twenty times a day. Now it is down to five or six, so there’s improvement. The second symptom was nausea and vomiting, that downgraded to just nausea, then to anorexia and taste distortion.

I have not been online during this time of being quite ill. I’ve ignored all my e-mails because I’ve felt so badly.

The plan will be to continue going to SCCA for daily checks and trying to stay out of trouble with secondary infections.

I have now missed two full months of dialysis. We were concerned that the harsh chemotherapy re-injuring my kidneys. To my big surprise, my kidney labs have continued to improve, to near normal. It is almost a given that the tunnel catheters in my chest, which were placed for dialysis on Jan 17, 2019, will be removed as soon as we are doing with our infusions (which are now using the same lines) in about 2 weeks. That is certainly a godsend.

Please pray that we can continue on an uneventful course and that when we check the status of the cancer, in about 2 months, that it will be non-detectable, meaning this course of misery was well worth it.


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10 responses to “UPDATE: 6/30/19 Day 61”

  1. So far so good as far as being uneventful per the medical staff. What you’ve been thru and your side effects are certainly a huge event in your life, but things are going in the right direction. Praying you stay well and away from the public germ carriers, and soon your dialysis tubes can be removed for good and you come home!!! 🙏🙏🙏🙏


  2. I think taking life one day at a time is the way to go and today is a great day to celebrate how far you have come. Praying for you and Denise everyday!


  3. Uneventful is great news! But the best news is how well your kidneys are doing. Hallelujah!! Thank you so much for the update so I know exactly how to pray.


  4. Mike, continuing to pray for you. Is there anything else that would make these weeks better for your and Denise? Anything we can do to help?

    A hug for both of you.

    Ann Ann Hutchinson Meyers, Ph.D. Annmeyers@gmail.com 210-213-0320

    “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

    Ralph Waldo Emerson



  5. Thanks for specifics to pray for!
    I am about an hour’s reading time from finishing “Waters of Bimini” and am so enjoying your analyses and philosophy from “Butterflies………” that are incorporated into the story, makes me feel knowledgeable (thanks for that, too).
    Huge hug to Denise, you look quite handsome with your shaved head, you both looked terrific in last weeks post.
    May infectious agents be banned from your environment! Onward and upward.


  6. Although it still sounds extremely challenging and uncomfortable, I’m glad that at least it’s abit better than before. Still continuing to think of you and Denise often, sending prayers for comfort, healing, peace


  7. So glad to hear you are on an uneventful course (who knew those words could mean so much!). I think of you often….


  8. Hello Mike and Denise! I am so happy that you have improved to this point! Ecstatic in fact. I do realize it’s still very difficult, but gaining ground. Yes!
    Denise, thank you for taking such good care of Mike and for being the wonderful support that only you can provide!
    Keep up the good work guys! You are doing it!
    Blessed be, peace


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