As U2 (in 1993) so eloquently sang:
“Some days come clean, other days are sneaky. Some days are better than others”
Today leaned more towards the sneaky side of the grid.
On Sept. 8, 2012, one day before Ingrid’s 2nd anniversary of being cancer-free, we had a call from the doc that, after a routine blood checkup, they spotted a rise in her CEA levels. It was at a 36 where somewhere in the 3-5 range would be normal. 3 months ago she was at a 3.
FACTOID #1 (from what I’ve read / heard):
CEA levels indicate a few things; cancer-fighters & cancer-survivors are monitored for spikes because this can measure protein caused from a tumor.
A retest was ordered (just to make sure this wasn’t a Friday-afternoon-job) and sure enough, after 2 weeks her levels are now at 58. Not good.
Today we walked back into the building (cancer clinic) that we thought we would never have to revisit for a meeting with an oncologist to hear about the results from a CT scan taken a couple of weeks ago & figure out what this CEA spike was all about. Here’s what we’re fighting:
Ingrid now has stage 4 cancer as it has moved into her liver. She has 2 tumors about 5 cm. in diameter on the right lobe of her liver which we saw on a nice little computer screen.
WHAT THIS MEANS:
She’ll need to go down to Vancouver within the next 2-3 weeks for a PET scan (which will reveal any other possible growths in any other part of her body) and the chemo will begin within the month.
They want to give her 3 months of chemo to first shrink the puppies.
Then surgically remove the cancerous pieces of shit.
Then pump her full of more chemo for 3-6 months just for kicks & giggles (AKA safety).
Doing chemo increases the chance of cure by about 10-20%. Statistically, without chemo and only surgery, there is about a 30% chance of cure.
We are surrounded by quality people who have already offered so much & even showed up unannounced with beer / wine. This kind of kindness breaks me and makes me thankful to live in a community that really knows how to fight for & with each other. Everyone has their own way to show support – I loved Sylas’s way of fighting for his mama a few weeks ago by running 9K even before we knew what was going on.
That’s the scoop.
So, ding-ding-ding, round 2.
MORE GOOD NEWS – A CANCER HAIKU
This has inspired me to start writing. Maybe it’s the beginning of a song or a sweet haiku but in any case, here it is:
And for a look back at one of the happiest moments of our life when Ingrid was able to walk out of the Kelowna Cancer Clinic after her final chemo treatment on Sept. 9, 2010. Can’t wait to film the next final treatment video.
For those wondering how you can help, Ingrid loves Facebook notes (speaking of words that start with the letter “F”) and I’ve started a blog uniquely titled “Ingrid’s Blog” for her HERE so you can stay up to date with how she’s doing. Cancer blogs are all the rage right now apparently.