Saturday, February 27, 2010

Saturday February 27, 2010

Not much to report this week in the way of treatment. John and I were home for what was expected to be close to two weeks but UCLA rescheduled John’s Radiation Simulation for yesterday so we headed back Thursday afternoon. That was after John traveled back to LA with buddies Tony Silva and Brian Swanson for a chemo treatment on Tuesday. One of their mutual friends (Jeff you know who you are) was surprised they made it to LA without detouring to Vegas for a fun filled 24 hours!! They had a good time anyway given the circumstances. Of course they didn’t go the distance without some kid games. See the “Anderson Brothers” in photo.

Being home was great. John planted a new cherry tree in the back yard. He is so proud of that tree. Doesn’t look like much now but he is anticipating the sweet cherries already.

Friday’s appointment went well. Xrays are taken to verify all the radiation beams are properly lined up according the plan the physicists created. Now that the plan is verified to be correct, they will start executing on Monday for 33 treatments, one each day Monday – Friday. John can’t wait till he makes it to that last treatment on April 14th.

We had a wonderful day today with Ernie and Mary Jackson, friends from John’s Morada days and again his co-worker at SFD. We went out for lunch and back to the apartment for dessert and coffee. They were great company and very photogenic too!! Thanks for the visit Mary and Ernie!!

John and I can’t wait for my sister to get here from Chicago on Wednesday. We are REALLY excited!!!

Can’t thank everyone enough for all the well wishes, cards and emails. We hope all is well with you,

Elaine and John..

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday February 19th

Well it’s been a good week. After John’s chemo treatment we drove back to Stockton to be home for some days before radiation starts on March 1st. John is happy to be home and see his buddies and go visiting at the fire houses!! We’ll be in Stockton until February 28th for the most part. John has to travel back to LA for a chemo treatment on Tuesday but then he’ll be back for the rest of the week.

We had more visitors last weekend and that always makes us happy. John’s daughter and siblings came to visit and we had a great time. We also got to see my brother and his family and see my niece Jacki play basketball. That was a real treat.

Other than that we’ve had some TV personality sightings!! Don’t want to use the word celebrity since some of you may not even know who they are!!

Our first sighting was Sheree Wilson. Some of you older folks may remember her from Dallas or Walker, Texas Ranger.

Then I happen to run into Doris Roberts , you know Raymond’s mom from Everybody Loves Raymond.

Maura Tierney was in the chemo clinic in the chair next to John last week. She played Dr. Abby Lockhart on ER, one of my favorite characters.

That’s all the news this week. Stay tuned for more….

Again, thanks for all the blog posts, emails, phone calls, and cards. Keep ‘em coming, they are very much appreciated. Elaine and John

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday February 12, 2010

John made it through another week of chemo and is doing well. His side effects are so far minimal except for the teenage acne on his face. John’s never had acne as a teenager but he’s making up for it now. No biggie, he’s a little more fatigued too but not too bad considering. His appetite for those of you who know how he can eat is a bit diminished too.

John finally had the CT Simulation this week. This is the first step in planning the radiation treatment therapy. During this simulation, he had his mask made (see photo) which helps maintain a reproducible patient position for daily treatment.

The next step is the treatment planning taking place during the next 1-2 weeks. Here, the radiation oncologists, medical physicist, and the dosimetrist meet to design John’s customized treatment plan. Once this is complete, John undergoes (on March 1st) a verification simulation where a dry run of the treatment takes place to verify accuracy.

If all goes as planned here, the actual radiation starts the next day for 33 treatments M-F.

After all that, we also had our first visitors! Yeah!! This was so good for John; it really lifted his spirits up. He can hardly wait for more company after March 1st.

It looks like we are able to go home for a few days after this next Tuesday’s chemo and again after his chemo on the 23rd until the 28th.

We hope to see a lot of you during that time. Thank you so much for all the cards, calls and emails. Keep ‘em coming. We are so grateful to all of you.

Happy Valentine’s Day,

Elaine and John

Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday February 5, 2010

Well, another week of scheduling and making appointments, learning more and trying to understand this whole treatment process. Besides John’s second chemo, which went well, he finished getting all the mouth and jaw implements he needs during radiation. More tests and scans next week to prepare for the start of radiation.

We also attended a SPOHNC meeting (Support for People with Oral, Head and Neck Cancer). This was quite eye opening. John was able to talk to many people who have survived this disease but feels especially lucky to meet a wonderful man there who has already been a tremendous inspiration to him.

We were sad to leave Nicole and John’s house in Mission Viejo yesterday to move into our own little pad in Santa Monica. We are now just 6 miles from UCLA, much easier than the 60+ mile commute from Mission Viejo. We like it here so far and think we’ll be comfy.

Please keep the posts and emails coming. We really enjoy them and they really keep both John and I up and positive. Thanks for all your love and support.