Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Quick Trip South

It has been a daily grind since January 2ND. Every Monday a blood test for Marie to see if she is strong enough to take her Tuesday chemo treatment along with what they call a hu2 inhibitor. Not everyone has the right whatever to take Herceptin. Herceptin is not considered a chemo drug. It supposedly stops the cancer cells from dividing and multiplying. The chemo is three weeks followed by an off week. The Herceptin is every week. Oddly the side effects from the chemo drug were minimal. It is the other drug that causes severe body pain in 10% of the patients. This regiment was developed by Dana Farber in Boston for folks whose breast cancer has metastasized. After 10 weeks, a scan showed that this treatment was not having the desired effect. The Oncologist (who we like and respect) told us to take two weeks off and go somewhere. The body pain that my wife has experienced has been particularly severe in her legs, adding to her MS ills.

So we decided to go to the Outer Banks, a favorite place, and an easy two day drive for her. My wife had not been getting much exercise these past weeks due to the pain. As we traveled she was walking more as we stopped at rest areas, visitor centers, motels and restaurants. We had reserved a room at the new Hilton in Kitty Hawk. We had a straight on ocean view. A very nice upscale Hotel. Unfortunately our room was a hike from the elevator. Worse yet the king adjustable (so called) bed was horrible. We did tour the Wright Brothers memorial, Had a nice lunch at the Duck Deli, a dinner at Tortuga Lie and another at Sam and Omy's. Sam and Omy's is a local hangout for the fishermen and local folks. More bar than restaurant. I like it.

I was awaken on the third morning from a sound sleep before 5 AM. My wife was crying and in immense pain. I believe that the prior weeks of inactivity followed by a definite increase in activity had affected her legs. "I want to go home now" she cried. So I went about arranging an early checkout and acquiring reservations in Chincoteague, VA which would be a manageable 4 1/2 hour drive. She could barely walk with my support. The room in the Comfort Inn was great, comfortable bed, good inlet view, two door from the elevator. We were treated to much wildlife in the preserve as we drove around the loop. The next day we ran for Rhode Island.

This was the first trip we have made in the van that was purchased for the express use to travel to Florida for the winter. It proved to be a comfortable ride, spacious for luggage and stuff. Gas mileage was acceptable for a heavy box on wheels. We did get away for a few days. Her legs are getting stronger. She has gone from cane to a walker and needs a chair for a shower. The pain is easing.

This Friday we go back to the Oncologist and his associates to find out what the new treatment plan will be along with the side effects. Some heavy decisions will have to be made.

At least we had our time together for a few days in locales that have been special to us over the years as we begin the next treatment phase.

No comments: