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18 December 2014 @ 09:09 pm
Kate's progress  
Kate has now been home from the hospital for two weeks. She's getting stronger, her balance is better, and the swelling and bruises are fading. The aphasia, unfortunately, is worse, which is very frustrating for everyone. We've re-started the steroid that was tapered off after the surgery, which should reduce swelling in her brain and bring her words back. Based on earlier experience it should take a few days to a week to have an effect.

We have met with the medical and radiation oncologists and Kate will be starting both radiation and chemo on Monday December 22nd. The radiation will be a five-minute treatment five days a week, the chemo a once-a-day pill (Temodar) taken seven days a week, both for about six weeks. After that there'll be a month off, then monthly chemo (five days on, 23 days off) for six months or so. Everything is subject to change based on how she responds to the treatment. There will be unpleasant side effects, but it's not supposed to be as bad as intravenous chemotherapy.

Our friends and relatives have been absolutely outstanding, especially Kate's sister Sue and our neighbor Michelle. Many people have sent cards, packages, emails, and foodstuffs and they are all greatly appreciated. All of the medical and insurance professionals we've dealt with have been great. Also, we have solid financial resources and excellent insurance. We are as well prepared for this situation as anyone could be.

At the moment I have to admit that my biggest problem is not knowing how to ask for help. I'm pretty overwhelmed, but I don't have the mental or emotional energy to figure out what I have to do myself, what I can outsource or simply not do, and what I can ask for that isn't even on my radar.

If there's something specific you can do for me or Kate, please let me know what it is.

If you'd like to come by for a visit, you'd be welcome! Just contact me by email (dlevine at spiritone dot com) or text (503-806-7562) before coming over, in case we're out of the house or indisposed. We would also welcome more healthy dinners; our freezer is pretty full at the moment but I'm sure we will be eating into that stash (literally) as things get busy around the holidays. You can sign up to bring food on our mealtrain.com page. Ask Bo O'Dell (youknowmeasbo at gmail dot com) to add you if you aren't already on that list. I will also be posting specific visit time requests on that page as soon as we know the details of our schedule for the next six weeks.

Thank you all for your support and good wishes.
KMS: balesvgqn on December 19th, 2014 08:38 am (UTC)
I've been thinking of you frequently throughout the day. So sorry to hear that the aphasia is worse. It must be a huge frustration to Kate! Hope that improves.

Hugs from San Jose!
farmgirl1146farmgirl1146 on December 19th, 2014 04:12 pm (UTC)
I regret that our help to you can only be in spirit. If there is something that we can do at distance, please let me know.
martianmooncrabmartianmooncrab on December 19th, 2014 08:37 pm (UTC)
I heartily endorse the steriods, I had one seizure event after my surgery, but it wasnt too terrible. I have gone with an anti serizer med for now though. My aphasia has greatly reduced, I think that the worst was saying "salad bar: for curtain rod.

I just went with the flow on the aphasia, its vastly entertaining. It sure makes folks laugh.

I hope that Kate is continuing on with her recovery... this isnt easy, and suviving a zombie attack on the brain is special. nom nom nom.
pennski: so many bookspennski on December 22nd, 2014 05:47 pm (UTC)
Finger, knees and toes remain crossed that she continues to recover.

Continued best wishes to both of you.