Saturday, November 1, 2008

Saturday, November 1st Update

Just wanted to give everyone who is checking an update on what's going on, which actually hasn't been much in the last week or so. I had my third chemo treatment yesterday and it went well and I feel pretty good still. Most of the pain I have been having in my chest (that led to discovering this) is gone, which I will take as a good sign, and am hoping is telling me that the tumor is not growing like it was before. The chemo has made me a little sick, but it's not as bad as I expected and I was told that the third chemo is the one that will probably knock my hair out so Shana and I decided to be proactive and we shaved my head (not ALL the way, but close) this morning. She has been asking me to let her cut my hair for like five years now and I finally gave in!

We also got to meet with Dr. Scalzo, my oncologist in Syracuse, yesterday after chemo and he said that it looks like the doctors in Boston have tentatively scheduled my first surgery for the week of December 9th. This would be the open-heart surgery to resect the tumor and remove a piece of my stermum. We were unaware of that before, but we are assuming that they needed to book the surgeons time, even though there is a chance I won't be ready for surgery at that point. I have my follow-up scans scheduled for the last week of November and the first week of December and those will basically tell us if the chemo is working and if we can move forward with the surgery. My three main doctors (Dr. Scalzo, Dr. Butrynksi and Dr. Gorman) have been amazing to us through this ordeal and every time we talk to them we get the feeling they really care. They make you feel like you are their only patient and spend as much time with you as you want answering questions and talking about what's going on.

Our spirits are still high and I really believe that I will beat this. I am taking it one day at a time and for now am just concentrating on letting the chemotherapy do it's job while I live my life. I went back to work on Tuesday, which felt great and once again my employer and co-workers (who are like a second family) have been GREAT through this ordeal. I am going back to Buffalo for the Jets game tomorrow (Go Bills!) and am excited about the month of November as by the end of this month I will be ready to move on to the next step of treatment. Though I wouldn't wish this on anyone, I have to admit that this experience has taught me a lot about what's important in life and where my priorities are.

Shana and I have to thank everyone, once again (and will a million more times) for all the support we have received. I learned about a benefit that is being planned by my family and friends and we are both deeply moved by peoples willingness and want to help and I don't have words that can come close to expressing how thankful we are. I (and my entire extended family) are truly blessed that we have each other and I have said over and over I couldn't walk this walk without them. Also, to my wife, immediate family and in-laws, I really don't know what I would do without you guys and I love you all so much. Thanks!


Lynne said...

Will- I really appreciate this on-line blog set up for you. I think about you and your family almost everyday and know that with all of this GREAT postive energy going around it will all be all right. How can you go wrong with the kind of team you got behind you. Keep up this great work and my family is pulling for you too. Lynne wolfe and family

Chris said...

Will - We've never met, I go to church with Joan and Michelle. I've been praying and thinking about you and your family all week. Keep up the fight and know that you have an awful lot of people you don't even know routing for you.

Enjoy the Bills game!!

Chris Acuff

Beartooth said...

Will there's a song that's in my head tonight. The song is called "Pressing ON" by Bob Dylon.
There's a couple lyrics that remind me of you. These are the lyrics:

Shake the dust off of your feet, don't look back.
Nothing now can hold you down, nothing that you lack.

I'm not sure if you know the song, but look it up if you need some motivational music. It really rocks.

Michelle Militi

Joyce said...

We can't thank you enough for keeping us all updated. We are all convinced that you wil bet this thing, too. Glad to hea your doctors are so great (of course, I knew that, lol)Havefu at the game and I hpe your presence turns them right around.God bless you both.
Ajima Joy & Uncle Lenny

Juan Perez said...

hi Will. This is Juan, Carlo's brother. We met at Elena's graduation party and I always remember you because you were so funny. We had such a good time laughing. I wish you all the best and am praying for your quick recovery. God bless you. Juan.

Cindy Dout said...

Sheesh, I thought you'd never update this blog - it's like you're busy or something. I just heard that you'll be back on the 360 project for some percentage of your work time. Yay! I win! I win! I get to work with Will!

Chris Shields said...


Sounds as if the chemo is already doing its' job, and it's great to hear that your not getting too sick from it! The benefit sounds like it's going to be a good time. As for our Bill's, things were looking great for us three weeks ago, now it's let down after let down.

jennoonan said...

I'm so glad you were able to get to the game today...even if it wasn't the outcome you would have wanted.

Hang in there. You're doing a great job and you've got a TON of people behind you.

Aunt Kate said...

Hi Will,

I'm sorry the Bills lost, but I hope you had a great time anyway. Really good news that your chest pains have subsided - it sounds like a very positive sign. Hurray!

Aunt Kate
(p.s. please post pic with new look...)

Joan (Mumsie) said...

Will, we are leaving for Florida right after we vote on Tuesday, and when we return, we will simply take the shorts out of our bags and replace them with slacks. We'll be ready to go to Boston!!! We will be in charge of buttering up the nurses and hospital staff who will take care of you!

Absolutely EVERYONE we know is praying for you, and I feel a distinct connection here with a power that is bigger than all of us. I have given God the nickname "Bill" for now, so every time someone says "Go, Bills", God will send more grace and strength and healing your way.


We love you and Shana and your family so much! It's a heck of a way to bond, but bond we have done, eh? Now we are closer than ever, so our prayers, linked together, send a strong message to BILL for you!

Much love,
Mumsie (Joan)

Anonymous said...


It's so great to get these updates and to hear that you are doing well. You better post a picture of yourself without hair! I can't wait to see it.

Glad to hear you're back at work. Nico and I will come visit soon

Stacy Spaziani

Christine Lauri said...


Dr. Scalzo is my oncologist as well, he and his staff are very good and always take the time needed to answer all the questions. Make sure you get the pillow and warm blanket during chemo (small benefit but at least its something)

Still thinking of you daily,
Christine Lauri

Meredith Jordan said...


I may have to introduce myself every time I leave a message, but---hey!---got nothing else to do. I'm a friend of Joan's (Shana's Mom) and have been asked by Joan and Michelle to keep the prayers flowing to you. I'm a nurse-psychotherapist who works with people who have a serious, chronic or life-threatening illness...and I made a CD a while ago that has 5 healing meditations to listen to while undergoing chemotherapy. I'f be happy to send you a copy if you want. Just have Joan let me know.

In the meantime, all you have to do on any given day is keep putting one foot in front of the other and keep moving in the direction of being competely well. Tumors of the heart are especially easy to heal in people with good hearts, and everyone tells me that would be you!

Prayers, blessings and lots of good thoughts coming to you and Shana...

Meredith Jordan

Kirsten Czupryna said...

Hi! It's nice to meet you. I am a friend of your brother's from BAE. You and I have alot in common. I am going thru chemo, too. And I'm also a HUGE Bills fan! (although I really hate the Red Sox- I'm a HUGE Yankees fan, too) I was orig. dx in 2001 with breast cancer and from there it metastacized to my bones (2004). Then, in 2007, I found it moved into the tissues. So that's where we are now. I have weekly chemo in Oneida, thru Univ. Hospital and take oral chemo daily. I also had taxol back in 2002 so I can relate. I also have a port - my second one, actually. I had the first one removed since we thought we were in the clear. Then when 'it' came back, I had another port put in.

Anyhow- I'm here to tell you I'm 44 yrs old, have a 14 yr old son and just got married 4 weeks ago. My attitude is that alot of people have it way worse than I do. I don't complain...I take each day as it comes and go from there. There are alot worse things in life than losing your hair or having treatments or whatever.

I will be following your progress and checking in with Matt to see how you are doing. Prayers are going up for you and Shana- you'll get thru this. Keep your chin up, a smile on your face and keep rooting for the BILLS! Everyone in my house are (EWWWWWWWWWWW) Dolphins fans except me...and you think YOU have problems??? !!!

Take care and keep fighting...

Kirsten Cz

Liz C said...


Its so great to hear the chest pain is going away and hopefully that means the tumor is too...go chemo! Looking forward to seeing you at the office soon. I already saw your cube...looks great...and yes we all believe in WillPower! Keep smilin'.


Liz SISTERR said...

I know I talk to you everyday, but I don't think that I have told you yet just how strong I think you are. If anyone is going to beat this, it will be you. You are a fighter and you always have been! I think about you all the time, and I tell everyone I talk to about this amazing brother I have, and how lucky I really am. Without you (and Shana of course)-I would really be lost. And that is why I know that you are not going anywhere, because I need you way too much, and the big man upstairs knows that. I have a lot of people praying for you, and I know that you are going to knock this thing right out. I love you so much. GO BILLS!! (Thanks to you, I am officially a bills fan, and I have the "tramp stamp" as dad would say, to prove it!)

love your sister!

Kelvin said...

Will--I just want you to know that I, along with others whom you may never meet, am praying for your recovery and that your spirit remains lifted during this time. I was very saddened to learn of your illness, but feel faith-assured that on the other side of this trial, you will be stronger! Thanks for posting these updates--it's a great way to keep everyone up-to-date and helps me to know how to direct my prayers.

Blessings to you!
Kelvin Sapp

Bo Stoianoff said...

Will, Tim and Diane have keep me in the loop. I am so happy for you that the pain has stopped and that the Chemo is not kicking your butt. I think it would be a great sign of support if your dad shaved his head as well. I would love to see it. Carol and I are thinking and praying for you often. Scalzo is the best around and with your attitude I am sure you will beat this. All the best, Bo

Beartooth said...

Hey Will,
Hope you're feeling strong today!
m militi

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