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