Thursday, August 14, 2008

I've gathered my thoughts and here they are!

Here I am in front of the computer hoping to find deep and meaningful words to share with all of you about hope and courage. It may take a while to come up with some, but I'll keep working on it until I muster something up.

Here is what we know: Rick's chemo is no longer working. The cancer is spreading in his liver and the tumors are all getting bigger. The next step is to try a drug combination which includes a drug called Erbitux (it has some nasty side effects...but if it gives him quantity and quality of life I think he'll try it) Before they try that drug however, they have to check his DNA to see if he is a good candidate. (They need to look for a certain gene) In the meantime, he is a good candidate (they think) for a clinical trial. Dr. Whiting says they'll move quickly on this leg of the journey which will include a PET scan, blood work, DNA testing, EKG and drawing straws. Rick won't know until we get a little further into the clinical trial if he will be one of the 25% who has to have chemo one last time before the trial begins, or if he can forge ahead and start the trial next week. We hope to have some answers about the timeline of this trial by tomorrow.

All of this is so surreal to me because when I look at Rick he seems healthy, he's still working, and mowing the lawns (when Jake doesn't get to them first). After the initial prognosis today, Rick got very quiet. However, as I looked into his eyes I could see his mind working harder than ever. He wants to make sure that everything is "taken" care of. He's the provider. Only now, he's uncertain about his future, the unknown, the "new stuff". Lucky for him, he has me to hold his hand, be inappropriate at all the right times, make him laugh, snuggle with him when he's not feeling well. Love is an amazing medicine. I'm going to start doubling up on his dose.

With all of this new information to digest, I'm not ready to go for my scans and results next week. I'm feeling good and I don't anticipate any changes, but we NEVER do. Let's hope after a fun weekend at Desert Aire that we'll be refreshed and recharged to take on whatever our new battles are.

Thanks again for all your love and support. Our lives are so much richer knowing that we have so much love coming our way.

Dreaming BIGGER than EVER!


Anonymous said...

Hang in there, we love you guys.

Dave in MT said...

How about we think of Rick's invader as the French men's Olympic swim team, and Rick and the new round of treatment as the American men's Olympic swim team. Determination and courage gave our guys one sweet VICTORY over those arrogant you-know-whats; let's see the same with Rick!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the visual, dave in mt! I love it. The Schmitt family may not have quite as many rippling muscles as those Olympic athletes, but the love that they share is their strength. And we're all cheering them on.

Janeen (the 55 year old friend)

Anonymous said...

This is the biggest olympic race and you continue to claim the gold.

Heather said...

I'm dreaming big with you all!

Anonymous said...

In blog #688 there is devastation. in blog #689 there is determination.
You guys are amazing. You alway reach way down and pull yourselves up. As you recharge for your new battles know that you are not alone. There are so many prayers and so much love buoying you up.

Anonymous said...

Our thoughts and prayers are with you!

Anonymous said...

For people like you and your family as well as our own family and friends is why we do what we do with the extra hour we have...keep fighting the fight! ACS' 25th Hour-What Would You Do Video

Celebrating 25 years of HOPE!

Anonymous said...

I know the feeling of bad scabs, I am so sorry you have to go through this.laughter is the best medcine there is.okay that and friends and family, but laughing helps.

Anonymous said...

Even when I cry right along with you, you make me smile and cherish my family so much more. All the love, prayers and support that I can come up with is being sent north to Washington tonight.
Love in my prayers,
Karen J, a friend in Oregon.