Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Chemo Brain

A weird side effect from the chemo is what they call "chemo brain". Some may argue I've had it longer than I've been on chemo, but it is characterized by the inability to concentrate, focus, or retain information. For instance I could read the words on the website I was searching, but I couldn't make it make sense. It was tough to watch a sports game for any period of time. One friend told me I acted, "like I'd had one too many beers".

Thankfully I have been feeling much more alert since Sunday night. In fact, I seemed to snap out of it and felt so alert that I stayed up until 4:30 am Sunday night (not my choice). I enjoy having high cognitive function. Not being able to think straight was very frustrating. I was mad that I couldn't study or do my devotions, keep up with the world, or enjoy my favorite magazine (Western Horseman).

We met with a local oncologist today who is willing to administer the second week of our chemo cycle. So our schedule for the next couple weeks will look like this. Week one we'll go to Chicago to the CTCA. Week two we'll get treatment in Muskegon (20 min's away). Week three is an off week and we start over again. Tomorrow is day 8 so we will be getting the second round of chemo.

It was an answer to prayer to find a doctor willing to treat us so close saving us an extra trip to Chicago. He also showed us the lab results of another patient (without revealing identity) who has cholangiocarcinoma and is on the same drugs I am on whose tumor markers have shrunk dramatically over 3 months. This was highly encouraging.

The treatment tomorrow should be much less intense than last week. This drug is not known for the side effects of last week. Please pray that I would be able to tolerate the drugs well, and of course that they would be working every moment to rid me of this cancer.

At times the depth of the situation that Kendra and I are facing pops up and surprises us. Please pray for our peace of mind and that we would continually turn our eyes off of ourselves onto God. We are doing very well, enjoying life for the most part. God is providing for us in so many ways. We are overwhelmed by His goodness.

FYI, there is a movement started by our church for prayer and fasting in our name tomorrow. We're blown away by this and honored. If you would consider praying and or fasting for us tomorrow we would be so grateful.


Lisa said...

Hi - I found your blog thanks to that series of prayer requests. I just thought I'd let you know that you aren't alone - I am 31 and was diagnosed with cancer last summer.... It is not an easy road we have been chosen to travel, but it does get easier. It sounds from your blog like you have an amazing attitude and trust in God. If you ever need to vent to someone who has been through something similar, feel free to email me - leesuhm@hotmail.com. You will be in my prayers tomorrow, and for a while to come.

Nate said...

Rock on Ryan and Kendra!