Thursday, December 4, 2008

Home For The Holidays

Hello again! I wanted to post a quick update as I spoke to Dr. Butrynski tonight and got some more information, including the next phase of treatment. He called me at 9PM tonight and would have spoken to me all night if I didn't run out of questions.

They decided that the best course of action is to continue chemotherapy for six more weeks and then evaluate again, but this time at Dana Farber in Boston. So I begin round 2 tomorrow and it will go every Friday until mid-January and then we will go to Boston for a few days so they can do all the scans needed and discuss what's next, whether that's surgery (there are currently two that I heart and the one on my vertebrae), radiation or more chemotherapy.

We were almost positive I would be having surgery next week, and though we thought they only thing that would stop that is bad news, we were wrong. The doctor explained that since the cancer has spread to two spots outside the primary tumor, and the primary tumor poses less of a risk than the cancer itself does, he wants to continue to attack and continue to kill cancer cells with chemo. He was happy with the direction things were going, and so am I. I must admit I really don't want this tumor in my heart anymore, and I feel like taking it out is such a big step towards recovery, so I was disappointed that I wouldn't have surgery next week. That might also be because I was anxious/nervous about it and I had prepared myself mentally for it, kind of like studying for a test, and now I will have to do that all over again. Oh well...I am REALLY happy that I will be able to attend my benefit and will not be recovering from surgery over the holidays, so I guess the timing works out better (as if there is ever a good time).

So, tomorrow morning, I get Taxol treatment number 7. I talked to my doctor about how well I have been handling it and he warned me that the effects of chemo are cumulative and this round might not be as easy. I am fine with's a means to get better so a little fatigue, nausea, baldness and neuropathy are much better than the alternative. I think I noticed myself feeling a little worse towards end of the first round so I see what he is talking about. I don't plan on letting it hold me back though...I want to keep living my life, keep going to work and keep on moving forward.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I will continue to update my blog at least once a week with whats going on (it's pretty therapeutic!) and I want to, once again, say THANKS to everyone who is supporting us during this. I couldn't walk this walk alone - not without my wife, my parents, my siblings, my nana, my aunts & uncles, my cousins, my friends, my co-workers and everyone else who keeps the positive vibes and the prayers coming. I am blessed with an amazing family, amazing friends and amazing people in my life...I firmly believe that.


Anonymous said...


Im so glad that you are going to be home for the holidays! It just wouldnt be the same at Nana's house without you and Shana there on Christmas Eve! We love you both and will see you soon!
Steph, Darryl
Kyle, Sydney and Alex

Liz said...

I know that you really wanted to be in Boston on Sunday, but I really am happy that you and the rest of the family will be home for the holidays. I couldn't imagine being here for so long without you guys. We just need to put our faith in the "dream team" and trust that they are doing whats best. Good luck with chemo today. I love you so much, and even though we still have a hike, we will get there! one step at a time! love you and see u later

Lizzy said...

I think this is fantastic news.
you get to go to your benefit and you get to be home for the holidays. Chemo can be tiring but keep up the great attitude, I have seen it work.

vicki said...

Your positive attitude is wonderful. This is just a little bump in your road to recovery but a necessary one that the doctors feel will bring long term gain. Keep your wonderful attitude in place and remember that we are all here in spirit for you. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Keep up the good work that you are doing.

Anonymous said...

I was so excited to log onto your blog this morning and learn that you did not have surgery...and for great reasons! It sounds like you have a great attitude about this, and as we discussed that is a big part of the battle. Continue pushing with your positive attitude and draw on the great support you are receiving from family and friends (sounds like you have a great support system too)!!

Wendy Ryan (Merkle)

Anonymous said...


I'm so glad to hear that you got good news, even though it wasn't exactly what you thought you wanted. Things have a funny way of working out and I firmly believe there is a plan for everyone. Now you can actually be home for Christmas and spend it with your friends and family!

Keep up your positive thinking and I'll continue to keep you and your family in my thoughts daily! I'm so sorry you have to go through all of this but am sure you'll come out stronger in the end!

Stacy Spaziani

Joan (Mumsie, Shana's Mom) said...

Will, I am so happy that you will be home for your benefit! And, of course, Christmas with the family will be had been poised to be so much less! The real meaning of Christmas is once again brought home to all of us: God's love for us born as a gift. We have had a lot of lessons during this trek; patience has been hard for me. I do trust all of the doctors who are overseeing your treatment, and that is a huge plus! I am happy you are getting to do things that are really important to you, including going to the Bill's games. Primarily, I am thankful to God and every saint I could ever think of to pray for you! I have them all on speeed dial now and a list serve on the internet. It saves time! I have to say, though, that I called your doctor to find out the REAL reason you did not go for heart surgery last Monday, and he fessed up: You like Michelle's lasagna and Chicken Parmesan, and are afraid she won't be able to whip it up in the hospital's lounge. I think I can get Dana Farber to give her a special lounge with complete cooking privileges, or we will take over Au Bon Pain.
I am also glad the prayers of so many people are doing their stuff. People stop me on the street for updates on you! I don't think I've missed asking anyone in Liverpool to pray for you! People have been so gracious! No one deserves this more than you, Will.
Gotta go. I think I hear Michelle whipping up another lasagna tray.
God bless, my man! I love you so much!

Anonymous said...