Thursday, February 1, 2007

A Word From Jeff

Hi all! Well, I'm feeling really good and so I wanted to take the opportunity to post a personal note on the blog. One of the side effects of the biochemo is that it is hard for me to think straight. It's been difficult to even read, and those of you that know me know that's saying a lot. Now I'm thinking much clearer and have pounded through about 100 pages of the sixth Harry Potter books (one of the books I brought along to read) in the last couple of days. I also put together an article for work.

Now I have about a week before I head into the hospital for round 2. The doctors say to eat, eat, eat, and then eat some more. It actually is kind of hard, especially for someone who isn't used to eating a whole lot to begin with. I have gained two pounds since yesterday, though, and I'm drinking about 1000 calories a day in milk and juices alone so that's got to help. My mom is keeping me surrounded with lots of good food, as are some new local friends who have supplied us with delicious cookies, protein mix, and other goodies. The doctor said I should try to gain 15 pounds before the next treatment. I don't know if I'll succeed, but I'll make the effort!

Kelly has done a great job of keeping you appraised of my doings, so I don't need to report much. The main thing I'd like to say is THANK YOU to all of you. Your prayers, notes of encouragement, and kind actions are doing so much to keep my mind focused on the positive. I can't possibly thank everyone individually for all they're doing so please know that you are each in my thoughts and prayers of thanksgiving every night.

Finally, I'd like to give a shout out to Aubrey, Regan, and Jack. I miss you guys a lot and can't wait for you to get here tomorrow. The thing that makes me the angriest about this whole business is that it has to affect you kids. That's not fair. We'll try to make up for it a bit by having a really good time here in Houston.

Well, the line is backing up here at the computer lab at the apartment complex so I've got to go. Thanks again for all your prayers and support. They mean a lot.



Larry said...

That's more good news Jeff.
Rest assured that we will continue to keep all of you in our prayers. Hope you guys have a great time together this week-end.
Love to you all
Larry, Kathy, Greg

gardiner said...

You bet. We're with you all the way, Jeff. Special hello to your mom for us. Also, it's great to know you're able to read again! You're handling this like a superstar!! Keep eating, lots!!Love, Meaghen & Brendan

Katie Clancy said...

Jeff, great to hear from you and that your treatment is going as planned. I hope you have a great time with the kids and Kelly this weekend. It will be very nice, I am sure, to be together again. Say hi to your mom ! Keep pushing - you're an inspiration. Take care, hope all flights go as planned.

PJ said...

Continued peace, love and prayers to you and your family. Peace, love and prayers to you.

PJ, Julie and the Whalen Gang

Tim Klein said...

Hi Jeff

Sounds like there's some good news to talk about. It's good to hear good news.

Say hi to your mom, Kelly and the kids.

Enjoy it when the doctors tell you to eat and put on the weight. I don't think that any doctor's ever told me to do that. Most of the time when their talking diets with me, it's about the type to be getting the weight off. Of course if I'd probably stay away from the Ho-Ho's and the fast food joints, I'd probably be doing myself a favor.

Have fun with the family this weekend and enjoy.


Mary H. Dodd said...

Hi everybody,
Jeff and I are at the apartment computer lab this morning. We are so excited to see Kelly and the kids. Jeff made welcome signs which we are going to hang on the apartment living room window. They will be parking really close and of course have no idea which unit Daddy is in. I think they will be excited to see the signs. Mary Margaret just called to tell us that she dropped Kelly and the kids off at the airport. Everyone was excited and carrying their little bags. Jack is sporting a new hair do--asked Mommy to be sure and put in the hair gel--can't wait to see him!! It is cloudy and in the 40's down here this morning. Sure hope the sun comes out--am I asking too much. Thank you for all your love and concern in my direction. Jeff is the perfect patient. Easy to take care of and does what he's told and so positive. I'm a lucky mother. Thanks for sharing Kelly. Keep up the prayers!! Mary, Mom

Scott_Monica1981 said...

Jeff, Kelley & family,
Have a GREAT weekend with your kids! They can learn some much from the love that you show for them!

I don't think I've ever prayed for someone to gain weight, but it's at the top of my list now!

Love all of you!

Scott & Monica

Patrick and Tracy said...

Next recovery round consider doing it on the ship. I'm fairly confident that you can pack on 15 pounds.
Have fun with the kids. We'll be anxious to hear how the plane ride was for them.
Talk to you soon Jeff- Tell everyone hello for us.
Patrick and Tracy

Michelle & Jeff said...

You da' man! I can't wait to talk with you Saturday. I hope you have a wonderful time with the kids. Did the doctor say anything about weight gain transplants? If so, I've got a few pounds I'd be willing to spare. Just let me know. HA! I love you big brother and can't wait to chat with you soon. Only three more cruises to go!!!
Much love and prayers,

nealy said...

Jeff, Kelly, and kids,
Just wanted you all to know that we are thinking of you and praying for you. Martha just emailed me your blog page, my eyes are a little blurry from all the reading!! We will keep in touch, thanks for all the updades!
Nealy, Kevin, Tanner and Ryann

Rhonda said...

Jeff ~

This is Rhonda (March) Heier. My parents just told me of your diagnosis last night. Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Kelly and the kids.

Don't ever worry about the support of your family and friends, they will be with you every step!

My next door neighbor/best friend is also battling Stage 4 Melanoma. At the present time she is on a clinical trial. She has gone through both Interleukin and Chemo, Vaccines and is on a new drug...if you or Kelly would like to talk to her or her husband, they are well versed in the Melanoma fight. Their email is

Currently we (Jess and I are the race co-directors) are planning a 5K Walk/Run to raise money for her Drs Research Foundation.Here is Jessica's story from our race brochure:

In June 2004 Jessica noticed that a mole located on her toe was bleeding. A biopsy confirmed it was melanoma. Due to the location two of Jessica’s toes were amputated. A sentinel node biopsy was performed to determine if the melanoma had spread to her lymph nodes.

On September 7, Jessica was informed that her cancer had spread, the same day her daughter started second grade. Jessica began a clinical trail at Fox Chase Cancer Center.

November 2005, Jessica noticed bumps on her arms and groin. A PET scan showed the spread of melanoma in her groin, pelvis and abdomen. This is when Jessica’s cancer journey brought her to Dr. Riley at St. Luke’s Hospital in Bethlehem. Jessica began Interluekin II treatment administered by Dr. Riley. She received 6 treatment of I-L II over the next five months. This treatment requires 5 days of hospitalization being infused with the drug until their body can not handle anymore. This treatment offers the promise of a cure in rare occasions.

I-L II kept Jessica’s cancer stabilized but not cured. Jessica returned to Fox Chase and began a Phase I clinical trial to potentially shrink her melanoma tumors. Jessica was also required to undergo chemotherapy. Jessica remains on the clinical trial despite unpleasant side effects.

She is a loving mother to Justine, 9, and Eddie, 6. Her husband, Ed, has been steadfast in his support. Some days are a struggle but Jessica’s attitude remains positive as she enjoys the love and support of her family and friends.

Jeff and Kelly ~ stay strong and positive and keep fighting every day. We will be praying for you!


Janet Tyler said...

DEAR Jeff, Kelly & kids,

We just arrived home from Dallas and have now had time to catch up on all of the updates. We are praying for you Jeff. Keep up the hard work, eating and doing what the doctors say. If you were here in Vegas, we could help you with the eating part! HA! All our love and prayers.

janet & michael