Monday, October 20, 2008

Blaine Update

Well …. Good and bad, I suppose.

Bad simply in the fact that yep, he’s getting radiation to his head, and naturally that comes with side effects. He’s starting to get that burned feeling, both inside and out, and his pain medication isn’t giving him near the relief it normally does.

He’s fatigued, and says vacuuming the living room yesterday about wiped him out. (I know! You’d think I would have offered to vacuum it myself, wouldn’t you? But …. Um ….. it’s character building. Yeah, that’s it. It helps him to feel useful. ) (And, to be honest, I was sucked into Facebook for most of the afternoon …..)

One of the radiation beams is sort of “nicking” the bottom of his right eye and he feels like there is a constant piece of grit in his eye that he can’t get rid of. Sounds silly, doesn’t it? But it’s driving him crazy and will most likely not go away until this is over.

But --- the good news. The fatigue has actually led to him taking a few afternoon naps, and considering he sleeps so little normally, I think it’s great his body is trying to get the rest it needs to heal. (No, I’m not a doctor, nor do I play one on tv. But anytime you can take a nap, it’s a good thing, right? That’s my motto, anyway.)

He got his first case of supplemental nutrition delivered. It was the wrong kind, sadly, and will have to be returned, but hey! At least we know the paperwork red tape is moving.

He started convalescent leave today. He had really hoped to work all the way through, and it just didn’t happen. In a way, it’s discouraging …. And in another way, how moronic was it of us to think radiation --- REPEAT RADIATION --- to his HEAD --- wouldn’t cause him any problems?

Sometimes optimism can be a tricky thing.

Someone expressed surprise to me last week when I mentioned these problems were chronic and ongoing. Five and a half years since his initial diagnosis, fifteen (16? 17? Who the hell can even keep track?) surgeries later, an MRSA-staph infection where he almost lost his leg, total oral reconstruction, and over 60 rounds of radiation ….. and this person acted shocked to think Blaine might have permanent complications. It was definitely a “no shit, Sherlock” moment. I try not to be all gloom-and-doom when people ask about Blaine because my gosh, that will bore the pants off anyone. But maybe I’m not doing an honest job of reporting things, either.
I’ll have to think about that.

Best news of all?

Radiation is half-over.

32 comments:

M, Ms. R, Mom, Auntie M, Marey said...

Glad you have some humor left!
Prayers from CA for Blaine and your entire family :)

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

I just reread your profile statement where you call yourself a flounder-er. ANd now I can't stop singing that song "Cuz I'm a wanderer," but I keep substituting the word flounder!!

Thought you needed to know! :)

Yeah for half over radiation!!

Hallie

Dianna in Louisiana said...

Half way there Kristie, half way there....... breath, eat some ice cream, and breath some more. Thank God that Blaine can take off when he needs to.

Praying.......

L said...

Your husband is a champ. Sometimes as a caregiver you have to make the hard choices. I think it was very thoughtful of you to let him vacuum so that he would tire himself out to the point of needing a nap! Only a good wife would do that. Keep pushing him so he sleeps, I'm not a doctor either but I have heard your body heals faster when your asleep. I'm glad you continue to have your humor.. and obviously the person who was shocked has never been around a cancer patient.. seriously wth? You all are in my prayers!

Leeann said...

If hugs can travel over the internet, you should be feeling my arms around you right about now.

((((((((((((((((((Kristie)))))))))))))))))))
(((((((((((((((((((((((Blaine)))))))))))))))))))))))

Much love to the two of you,
Leeann
niccofive.blogspot.com

Leeann said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leeann said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leeann said...

Sorry, in my hugging enthusiasm I hugged you three times in rapid succession....lol

Leeann

Beth said...

Hang in guys! We all admire your courage. And I'll be praying, praying, praying. I've dealt with chronic pain myself and I'm sure it's not even a tenth of what Blaine goes through on a regular basis -- but man, does he have my empathy. And more prayers. Your family is one of amazing fortitude and humor (which heaven knows, is the *only* way to survive this kind of crap).

Alisa said...

Keep on keepin' on. You guys rock. And I in now way think that radiation should excuse the man from simple household tasks. Men these days.
In all seriousness, still praying here for your strength all around.

Daisy Duke said...

Yaay for the half-way mark.

Clearly, boo on the rest of that crap.

lizinsumner said...

Blaine - hang in there, guy! I saw the effects of my friends radiation toward the end of her six weeks, and it wasn't pretty. Her's was abdominal; I can just imagine how it must be when pointed at one's mouth. I have another friend with thyroid cancer; they make him drink something radioactive every six months. It's terrible how the cure can end up being as bad as the disease....but, keep up the naps! We're pulling (and praying!) for you!

Anonymous said...

I have so much admiration for Blaine. And, for you, too. I can barely fathom the never-ending pain. I know my mantra would be "I want my old life back".

You have both set a example for the rest of us in how to deal with life's curve balls with grace and courage....and a wicked sense of humor!

Dixie

katy said...

I am glad its half over, and I hope the side effects don't get any worse.
I hear laundry can be really tiring and can cause naps...just a thought.

The Running Girl said...

I can't imagine what going through all of that makes Blaine feel like. Glad to see he is able to get some naps in, though. You're still in my prayers.

krueth said...

Praying for Blaine and all of you, and I agree with the naps are healing. Your body does need that to heal itself. So glad its half done too. Wendy

Miscellaneous From Missy said...

He was vacuuming, and you were "sucked" into Facebook... HAHA! I'm sure that pun was not intended, but you cracked me up!

Eloise said...

Tell Blaine a lot of people that he doesn't know are pulling for him and praying for healing and comfort. I'm truly sorry your family is going through this, Kristie. Hugs to all.

Anonymous said...

Keeping Blaine in my prayers...

Kris Herbst
Bettendorf, Iowa

Anonymous said...

Continuing to pray for Blaine -- what an amazing man he is! And you're pretty wonderful yourself, Kristie.

Karen
California

AVT Coach said...

It is very hard to keep positive when someone is hurting. I am so sorry for your family and I have you in my prayers. From the comments on this post it looks like you have a great community of people who are surrounding you with positive thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous said...

sometimes life just really sucks. and you can whine all you want to because you have gotten more loads of crap heaped on you than I could ever deal with. But you do. Hats off. Keep plugging through. There is a light at the end of this tunnel.
mary cron schulman
crosslake/san diego

Natalie said...

Well, I AM sitting here without any pants on, but it's not because you're boring me, it's because I really don't have any pants that fit. Except my pajamas. And some yoga pants. Which is ironic, because I don't do yoga. So please do not consider my lack of pants a sign. I want to hear it all--good or bad.

Pam D said...

We've had this discussion before...and really, I don't think you've whitewashed the situation. Between your updates and the photos, it's apparent that Blaine will carry scars for the rest of his life. All of you will, whether they are visible or not. I am just praying that the scars never become your whole life story; that God will help you to weave those scars into the cloth of your life to make a pattern that is pleasing to Him. From all that I've read so far, Kristie, you have a talent for beautiful weaving.
With great big Georgia hugs and endless HOPE...

Rosemary said...

Oh, Kristie.. you have all been thru so much.. I know that I've mentioned this before, but I'm thinking that the people who didn't 'know' you through Kendries site might not have read the crap sandwich entry. That entry moved me.. and really made it hit home. You have been through so much, all of you.. and you handle it with grace and humor. Your friends make me laugh, too.. the pants being off but not because they are bored, because they don't fit!! Unfortunately, I can relate to that.

Just wanted to say that you are all in my thoughts and prayers.. Blaine is an amazing guy and it's so unfair that he is going through all this.. some people just don't understand.. maybe they are lucky enough never to have known anyone fighting the cancer fight? My moms radiation to her jaw caused all of her teeth to fall out.. just another indignity caused by cancer..

You are all amazing.. and thank you for sharing your journey. I know that must be hard sometimes.

Laura in LA said...

Yahoo for the half over part!!!

Missy said...

I'll continue to pray for your family. It's a big crap sandwich, any way you slice it.

Marisa said...

Sending prayers for Blaine and you. Hang in there.

Trish in Leesburg, VA said...

Poor Blaine! And are people really dumb or just pretending? lol. I hope you had a smart Kristie style comeback for that one.

Still praying!

Jenny said...

I just wanted you to know that I am thinking about you and Blaine....big hugs from ATL!

JenX67 said...

We have a mutual friend - friends, actually. Stefunk and Heather from Bethany. As another person commented - you are half way there. But, you seem to have already arrived to a wonderful destination from what I have read. I was visiting you a few months ago, but you dropped off my radar. I'll put ya back on it! Blessings on you, Kristie. The very best is yet to be. I know this promise of God's to be true. Onward, jen

Anonymous said...

The Escoe Family Rocks! You all are the best and I am so glad we got in the Pre-K line when I did that Friday! We really wish there was something we could do to help...okay, send the kids back to GA for stay for a while! :)
We have Blaine on the prayer list at church and Nicholas says his prayers every night and ends with "Please God, please make Mr. Blaine get over his cancer and make him never ever have cancer again. AMEN." Everyone that knows him at WR-ALC ha him in their prayers as well. Keep up the humor!
Love you guys! The Ashworths in GA.