|I think the shirt says it all|
I want to start off by saying that Martin is an amazing husband and encouraged Katherine to come down to Florida with us to be able to spend time with dad just two days after coming back from their honeymoon. He had to work, so he let his new bride leave him for 5 days and it is something we very much appreciated. Thank You Martin!
James and I planned this trip to Florida in hopes of giving mom some time to relax (she loves the beach) and give us time to hang out with dad away from the mundane routine of being around the house. The timing could have been better regarding chemo and such, but it was our Summer break and was the time we had to work with.
On the way down, dad had some episodes of falling at rest stops. After initially thinking they have been seizures, we came to the conclusion that it was more likely the case that dad was standing up too quickly after having sat for an extended period of time. In addition, dad had finished a chemo round the day before we left, this leaving him weak and with a variety of other side effects that weren't conducive to travel so soon. Dad pushed through, and by the second day, he was still tired but enjoying himself.
|Isn't Mom beautiful?|
After returning home, dad had an appointment to have a follow up MRI. Dr. Weir was amazing and got us the results the same say instead of us having to wait for days or weeks like some people do. That evening he contacted me and told me the results.
|Just like before. Opa ad Boo reading|
Many very promising immunotherapy trials do not allow for patients to have used a drug called Avastin. Avastin is an angiogenesis inhibitor, a drug that slows the growth of new blood vessels. This sounded very scary to me at first. I thought, if no new blood vessels can grow, how does the body repair itself? I spoke with Sheng and he assured me that this drug targets the vessels that supply the tumor. With the tumor being in the brain, we have a situation where the only part of the brain that has new vessel growth in someone my dad's age, is tumor. The glial cells don't require constant vessel growth, so it shouldn't impact the brain negatively. There are some side effects that I worry about such as intestinal bleeding, extreme fatigue, and some others...
|Annabelle had to give kisses to Opa|
I have been the one to do research, scouring journal publications, clinical trials, alternative medicines, etc. I am also the one who keeps an open line of communication with dad's doctors between visits. Dad trusts me to give him the information I gather and help make decisions regarding his treatment with his doctors. Dad obviously has the last say on everything presented, but getting the information and making sure I've looked at every angle for what it would look like to move forward with a treatment is scary and I am constantly afraid I will make or suggest the wrong thing.
|Adelyn loves giving her Opa kisses|
|Boo insisted on sleeping with dad|
Please continue to pray for dad and his ability to beat this beast. We have no growth, so lets pray for shrinking of the tumor next! Be sure to thank God for keeping dad stable :) We thank all of you who have been with us from the start and those who continue to show your support and love by visiting and calling. I will update you as soon as something happens!