Thursday, January 15, 2009

SWMBO and the Get Well Card

I haven't talked about SWMBO lately.

Her Oncologist pulled her out of Chemotherapy at the end of the 9th week during her evaluation. She was so overwhelmed by the chemo, and associated medications, that she was unable to walk unassisted. Also, she was disassociated ... couldn't think straight.

So he too her off Chemo around New Years (December 31st, to be precise) and told her she would have to recover from the debilitation before he could decide on a new course of treatment.

She took a couple of weeks off treatment, to allow the heavy metals to dissipate, went back yesterday for another evaluation.

They did some tests, inclding Scans and Xrays; the doctor said they needed to be able to say that the tumor was ruduced my 50% to determine that the chemotherapy was working.

He was unable to do that.

Show she's going to stay off the chemo for another two weeks, and he'll put her on a weekly regimen of Avastin only (constricts the blood vessels to reduce the amount of nutrients to her tumor ... and also to the rest of her body.)

This every-other-week addition to her weekly infusions have caused her a lot of problems in the past, but her oncologist thinks it will help slow the growth of the tumor, and that the side-effects will be lessened because it will no longer be infused along with the other 'heavy metal' drugs.

So she'll be working on maintenance procedures for a while (indeterminate length, perhaps in terms of years) while her doctors work to find a curative palliative. They're talking about some possibilities, but she probably won't be going back to the normal chemotherapy for the foreseeable future.

The Greeting Card
In the meantime, I received a mysterious message early this week from Mike of Mister Completely. He wanted my street address to "mail (me) a package".

When I got home tonight, after stopping at SWMBO's house to see what I could do for her, I found he Mystery Package. It was a large box, addressed to (Jerry the Geek) "Re: Sandie".

I took it inside and opened it up quickly. Unlike most parcels addressed to me, it did not include reloading components.

Instead, it included a huge Gift Basket with "Get Well" ribbons wrapped around the handle.

I didn't look for a gift card. I didn't even take the basket out of the box to look for a card. Instead, I just came upstairs to email Mike and ask him if this was the surprise package he had promised me.

He said it was (and included the story behind it, which I will not relate here).


What a wonderful surprise for both me and for Sandie. I put the box by the door to take out to the car later, so it will stay cool and fresh until I can bring it to her tomorrow night.

Want to know the amazing part?

I've never met Mike. I've corresponded with him, he has posted comments in support of Sandie and me during her current battle, and every year he invites me to the Gunbloggers Rendesvous in Las Vegas (I've never taken him up on that ... I don't like Las Vegas and it's too far to travel.)

In fact, I don't think Sandie has ever heard of him. Well, she hasn't spent much time on the computer lately, and she doesn't surf GunBlogger websites as some of us do.

To receive this open expression of support from Mike is a wonderful thing, in my mind. here's a guy who only knows her third hand ... only knows me 2nd hand, and still he goes out of his way to make such a generous gesture.

I can only repeat the few things that I have said often, but not often enough.

You meet the nicest people in the Shooting Sports. And you meet surprisingly nice people on The Internet.

The combination of the two can only be said to be "The Best of The Best".

Many people have told me, in relay to Sandie:

"If there's ever anything that we can do, please let me know". The obvious reply to this is "okay, can you show up this weekend to vacuum the floors, Friday to do the laundry, Wednesday to do the shopping?" I'm sorry, we sometimes get a little bogged down in the mundane details.

So if you want to show Sandie some support, I'm afraid the the Gargantuan Generous Gift Basket niche has already been filled.

Can you show up on Tuesday to take the trash cans out to the curb?



Yes, I'm making light of this. What else can one do? But we do receive so much love and encouragement from our friends and acquaintances, and it's impossible to keep up with the volume here. When someone at a match says "Tell Sandie 'Hi' from me and tell her we miss her", I put it on my list and dutifully recite it only a few hours later, when I get back to her. She appreciates your support, and if I don't make the effort to return the greeting, please be patient with me. SHE receives your message, and SHE thanks you individually ... even if not in person.

Sandie and I are both doing as well as can be expected now, and we're hoping that she can spend some time on her day job in the near future, as soon as the worst of the drugs wear off and she canconcentrate again. Her fingers are still numb, so it's hard for her to type on the computer.

But if you will accept a group THANK YOU, here it is.

Sandie will probably not show up at a local match soon, but I do keep her informed on the odd occasions when I show up, such as last weekend's match at ARPC.

And I still have my camera, so unless you want' to be profiled here ... don't shoot yourself!

It's a Jungle out there!

But she can read your messages, or I can read them too her, and we both appreciate

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