Leanne, Ryland, Kaitlin, Jeff & Maryn

Thursday, January 4, 2007

January 4, 2007: Holiday Update

Family and friends,

We hope you had a wonderful holiday! Ours was exciting, as it was Maryn's first Christmas...and boy, did she get spoiled! Jeff's parents were here until the week before Christmas, then Kaitlin (Jeff's daughter) flew in on Dec 26th. We drove up to Idaho for the week to visit our parents, family and friends up north while Katie was in town.

I figured I'd wait until the end of the first round of chemo before giving the report. Overall, it wasn't too bad. I didn't experience much nausea (and the anti-nausea meds are great!), but did have a severely decreased appetite, fatigue, some pretty intense bowel irregularity, cramping, headaches, etc. The day 7 blood tests showed that my red cell count had dropped, but the Oncologist decided to let me ride it out to see if my body would recover (the other options are a shot of Procrit, which is so-so in pregnancy, or a blood transfusion). I thought I was going to make it on the hair, but I only got to keep it for Christmas! As you can see in the attached pics, it started falling out on Dec 26th, and quickly became bald on one side by the following Saturday. I was surprised at how fast your hair falls out, when it finally decides to go. On Saturday, we decided to have a shave fest, where Kaitlin did the initial honors of giving me a mohawk, my girlfriend, Heather, took a run at it, then Jeff cleaned everything up with a #3. It turns out that I'm a finalist in the 2007 Homer Simpson look-alike contest, between my bald head & growing belly.

While in Boise, I came down with a nasty throat infection (couldn't eat/swallow, throat was on fire, everything was swollen to the point of almost being closed up in the back of my throat, etc). The Onc prescribed some antibiotics, and after a couple days of being in sore throat hell, I felt much better. I went in on Tuesday for more blood tests in preparation for round 2. My white cell count has dropped, but is still within the normal chemo limits, but my red count didn't recover from the last round of chemo and dropped further. We got the Procrit shot okay'd by the Perinatologist (high-risk OB), and I went in yesterday to start round two - with an added shot of Procrit. I should gain some energy from the Procrit, so I'm looking forward to that...but what exactly should I blame being tired on??? A 1-yr-old running daughter, being pregnant, or on chemo??? I think I'll be tired regardless - and I'm perfectly fine with that!

In other news, Jeff and I went to have an ultrasound on the baby on Tues as well. We are in total shock - it turns out that we are having a boy!!! We both knew that we were having another girl, and had even picked out a name for her. We have never agreed on boy's names, so this little man is going to remain nameless....maybe we'll call him "Hey You" - but with a unique spelling (Hai-U?). We are over the moon that we are having a little boy - and he is completely healthy. I'm 18wks pregnant, and he measured at 18wks 5 days, so he is growing perfectly. I was a bit concerned about his growth, because I have only gained 4 lbs so far in the pregnancy, where I should have gained 10-12 lbs by now. At this point, the docs aren't concerned, as long as I continue gaining weight & the baby's growth isn't affected. We go in for another growth ultrasound in 2 months to make sure all is well.

So, that's the latest news from the Lusk household. Maryn turns a year old tomorrow (where has the time gone!?!) and my mom is flying in to help out for the next two weeks. Maryn can't wait to see her Mema. We hope you all have a happy and healthy new year!!

Leanne (& Jeff and Maryn)