Friday, January 26, 2007

Week Two


We officially started Week Two of Jeff's treatment-adventure. This is the "rest and recovery week" after last week's hospital stay. We decided to celebrate with some blood tests and a trip to the oncologist. Today, Jeff had his first post-hospital check-up. His white blood counts were quite low (which is to be expected). They were 1,300 and the normal range is 4,000 to 10,000. Therefore, Jeff will have to continue to give himself a daily Neupogen shot until his counts are 10,000 or better. Otherwise, he is feeling better everyday and the doctor has been encouraging and optimistic. So, we have chosen to follow his lead and ignore any possibility that the treatment is not working. The doctor told Jeff that he can consider Week Two his "vacation" week and that he should sleep and "be lazy" as much as he wants. However, during Week Three, Jeff has to work hard to gain weight and strength for the Second Cycle of treatment which should start on or about February 7th when he will go back into the hospital.

Oh, and before I forget . . . Jeff cannot have any flowers or plants around him. He also cannot have any fresh fruits or vegetables. These things pose a threat of air-borne and food-borne illnesses, so Jeff has to stay away from them until his white blood counts are back up. So, if you were thinking of sending Jeff a singing telegram, please make sure the lady is wearing FAKE coconuts. Ha!

Jeff's mom, Mary, arrived in Houston last night. She and I will be trading places while I go home to Milwaukee tomorrow. We're not yet sure how long either of us will stay at our "new" posts. I would really like to bring the kids to visit Jeff during his Third Week (next week before he goes back into the hospital). They are desperate to see him and I'm sure it would do Jeff good, as well. So, we'll have to see how Jeff is doing and whether he can handle the company. So pray that the kids stay well (we cannot go visit Jeff if one of them is sick) and that Jeff stays well so that they can all see each other soon! I dread leaving Jeff tomorrow, but I am also very excited to see my kids, and I miss my friends in the band and at work. So, it will be nice to return to the "normal" routine for a while--even if it is not so normal.

In the meantime, pray that Jeff's white blood counts rebound so that he can gain some momentum going into the next treatment cycle. And thank you to Barbara for bringing dinner to the kids last night. They loved it and Jack especially liked the "yummy yummy bread!" It was a big hit and we appreciate it sooo much!!

So, I'll see you all soon and I'll continue to try to keep everyone updated here. Maybe Jeff will post some entries from Houston if he feels up to it. We still don't have internet access in our apartment but we're working on it. Otherwise, I'll report what he tells me second-hand and will use this as a forum to fill-him in on what's going on at home until I am back on the front-lines in Houston.

Much Love, Kelly


aubrey kate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
aubrey kate said...

Hi Mom and Dad! How are you guys today? I can't you both. Well, this is a really short comment but I have to go now. I love you SO much and miss you very much!
Lots of Love,
Aubrey Kate

Ann R said...

Jeff and Mary,
Glad to hear you are out of the hospital and hope all goes great with the white blood count coming up soon. I am sure your glad to have a break from the treatment for a while and will enjoy your mom's company. I am sure she has great stories from the children, since she has been around them the last couple of weeks. I can not imagine that From the Christmas letter your mom sent they really have grown. Well take care you two! I will pray for your strength and blood count to go up. Tell your mom hi and have a great visit.
God Bless,
Ann Reins (Tracy Mom)

Ron & Mary said...

Jeff and Kelly,
I just wanted you to know that the Christian Church (the one Grandma Dodd was a member of) has you on their prayer list too. I figure any and all prayers will help you to heal quicker and get back to your family. We will continue to pray for you and all of your family.
Love, Mary and Ron, Kelsie,Leslie

mphaley said...

We're following your lead around here and staying very optimistic about the treatment. Hmmm...I wonder if I can arrange for a "lazy" week for myself. God bless you all!

Mike & Laura Haley

Tom and Carmela said...


I haven't had cancer so I don't know what you're going through, but my sister was treated for breast cancer last year and went through some of the same suffering you have, what with chemo, radiation, and now that Tamoxifin treatment.

Thank you for all you have done for the ND Club of Milwaukee over the years. We'll be praying for you. Suffering is a mystery. Fr. Benedict Groeshel has a good book on this. We'll keep you in our prayers.


Tom Kustner

KG2 said...

Hey, Jeff
We are so glad to read that you came through the first round in such "good" condition. The positive, fighting attitude you had going in has obviously remained intact for the next round. You sounded pretty strong on the phone the other day and I will take that as a good sign. Your family is lucky you are such a strong, determined man. We pray for you, Kelly, and the kids multiple times a day.

Unfortunately for you, your new residence is not far from my office... plus I am at the Astrodome at least once a week. So, as further motivation, I will be dropping in to bug you until you beat the cancer and can go back home!

Kelly, if you need a spy to make sure he is fattening up, let me know!

I hope the changing of the guard went smoothly. Please let us know if we can help in any way. God Bless!

-The Gardners

teasley_5 said...

Glad to hear you are doing so well after round one! Keep up the good work and the great attitudes! We are praying for you everday. Right before we say our prayers the kids always remind us that we have to include cousin Jeff and his family in them. You are never far from our thoughts.
The Teasley's