Most of my life I was VERY presumptuous about being healthy, taking my (mostly) GOOD health for granted...
I was committed to annual check-ups for all of us, and so late October 2009, my daughter and I went for our annual and very routine physicals.
Surprise, surprise... my routine blood tests revealed extreme Anemia, significant White and Red Cell issues, low Platelets, and a variety of other CBC red flags! I was (stupidly) not worried when my GP doc left repeated phone messages to contact him, and when we did speak, I (stupidly) requested postponement of his referral appointment to the Hematology Dept until the end of the Fall academic term.
Arriving for my first appointment Dec 14, 2009, I was confronted with the check-in sign that read: "Hematology/Oncology"... What? Nooooo! not me... I must be in the WRONG place! And so my diagnosis journey began with vials and vials of blood drawn "stat", urgent Dr consultations, a surprise and painful Bone Marrow Biopsy, a full body Skeletal Scan, more blood tests stat, and then on 12.30.2009... THE revealing meeting... the "huh-what" moment ... the confirmation diagnosis that I, Julie, have CANCER!!!
Happy New Year to me, I just learned a new vocabulary word:
Multiple Myeloma!!! MM, Multiple Mye-what-loma!!!
January - June 2010
My medical metamorphosis began.
I read, and read, and read and researched and researched MM. I trusted my expert Oncology/Hematology team's plan and began my "New Normal" as a cancer patient.
My treatment plan was developed to include powerful Dexemthesone steroids paired with Revlimid chemotherapy, with the plan to be hospitalized for an Autologous Stem Cell Transplant July 2010.
I began living "one day at a time" like never before.
Jim was a wreck. Alissa and Scott were stunned; family and friends shocked.
Me... Cowgirl Up! I got back in the saddle and knew I was in for the ride of my life!
I did well on my initial pill-form Revlimid Chemo, "roid-rage" Dex Steroids and other supportive meds. I am forever deeply grateful and appreciative for all the love and support from everyone in my personal and professional life! I thank all of you for working along with me, and allowing me to continue to lead a semi "normal" life!
YOU have helped save my life!
My treatment trail ride forks to City of Hope hospital as I will saddle up beginning June 9, 2010 for a new rodeo called an Autologous Stem Cell Transplant!
Ye-Ha, let the adventure begin!
My thoughts are with you, and no, there is no sense that I can find. It's just a long strange trip. I can only imagine the anxiety and stress you must be going thru. Hang in there for your sons sake. I hope he is treated successfully .ReplyDelete
Best to you and your son,
Christina, fellow MM er
Thank you Christina for your kind words of supportDelete
Julie, just got your email. I just can't believe it. What I do know is that YOU are a very strong person and you can be such a support to Scott!! Love and prayers for you all.ReplyDelete
Thank you Gay for your kind words of support... stay away from my office, as who knows if this cancer-thing is contagious!ReplyDelete
Jules, there is no reason for all of this craziness. We're so sorry you all have to endure this new curve ball. You'll have to be strong for Scott and we are all rooting for success. Keep your sense of humor as best you can. Let us know ANY WAY we can help.ReplyDelete
Love and Hugs
Thank you Linda (and all the Ryans) for your continued support of our cancerous craziness :/ xoxoDelete
UGH!!!!! I am so done with cancer!!!! Make it go away!!! I need your strength to get through everything right now :(ReplyDelete
Hang in there Claudia... I will call you regarding mom's chemo options. Love to all of you always!Delete
Julie and Scott, I'm sending you both my love and prayers. I'm always incredibly impressed by your guys' strength! That truly helps with your fight.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much for your love and support always Julie!Delete
Julie and Scott, You are in our thoughts and prayers. Stay strong you are loved by many..... I don't know why so many are touched by cancer but maybe our strength is being tested. The one thing I know about this bumpy path is "God is right beside us". He gives us the strength to endure......And He puts special people around us to help share our bumps ......... Hopefully you are feeling the love and prayers that are being sent your way. Evelyn SchmittReplyDelete
Thank you Evelyn (and Neel) for your continued love, support and prayers! We are doing better... and yes indeed we feel all the love and prayers you and Neel continue to send our way! Thank you so very much!! xoxoDelete
Julie, I was diagnosed in Nov. 2011 with MM and kidney failure and recently stumbled across your blog. I have read every entry and have really enjoyed it. My husband tells me I shouldn't read all this stuff, because every body is different and he thinks sometimes it will depress me. But it doesn't. I like to see how everyone handles their treatments, hair loss, emotions, etc. I just started the stem cell collection process. Had cytoxan and now Neupogen shots. I also share a birthday with your son, Scott. I wish him all the best with his treatments and recovery. Keep writing and inspiring the rest of us out there going through the same things!ReplyDelete
Thank you for writing Sheri! I just found your post! but I don't have a way of replying directly to you. Hoping you reply again! Thank you for your comment!Delete