I remember when the kids were little how much fun we would have playing hide the penny. The game works like this, one family member would hide the penny anywhere in the living room after everyone else left the room. Once they returned it was game on, and the first person who found the penny was the winner and then they had a chance to hide the penny next. There was many times that the kids could not find the penny and I would give clues.. "Mallory, you are getting warmer," then the others would race over to that area until someone found it. Carlee was about 4 years old when she hid the penny and we could not find it after a few minutes. When we asked her for clues, Carlee would not give us any clues so we kept looking.. a couple more minutes passed and we started whining. "Carlee we need a clue!" Finally, Carlee looks at us and says, "IT'S SOMEWHERE!!" All I can think of is, "Great, another Reinemann smart ass." Some clue! Well as it turned out, Carlee was not playing by the rules. The penny has to be visible for others to find.. and Carlee had the penny in her pocket!
I am learning that illnesses also don't play by the rules! My treatment of the kidneys is falling far short of expectations. I have 18 days left of the chemo portion until my 6 month roller-coaster-ride-from-hell is over. There are some good signs.. my albumin (protein in my blood) is increasing, I have not had any swelling of my ankles since 11-22-09, and I have reduced the amount of blood pressure medicine to one 40mg pill of Lisinipril. My kidney doctor suspects that there is a secondary cause that is hindering the healing of my kidneys. On December 30th I met with one of Froedtert's best doctors. Doctor Sam Pappas is an oncologist surgeon who specializes in a rare cancer called Pseudo Myxoma Peritonei (PMP or "jelly belly" for short.) You get this disease from having a ruptured appendix where micro organisms start to grow on your internal organs. Dr. Pappas ordered some labs called tumor markers to see if i may have the big "C." The two tests were CEA and CA19-9; my CEA came back at 59, much elevated from normal- and my CA19-9 came back at 92.5.. and anything over 37 is considered abnormal. Not good!
Dr. Pappas called me last Wednesday and moved my scheduled appointment from Jan. 27th to tomorrow, Jan 18th.. this can only be good news (yeah right!) Based off of my first talk with Dr. Pappas, he wants to perform surgery on me before the end of this month. I am not comfortable with this due to my immune system being at an all time low from my steroid/chemo regiment. If something goes wrong, my body has no way to fight back and this blog could be over real quick! Dr. Pappas point of view is this: he suspects PMP and with my immune system being down, PMP will be running uncontrollably and unchecked by my body. Therefore he wants to get in there as soon as possible. Seems like we are getting "warmer" to the clue. "It's somewhere!" But hey, in order for me to get a full recovery we must get down to what's causing this whole thing.. I will keep you posted.
I want to thank Dave Kolar who took a day from his vacation to drive me to my appointment on Dec 30th. Just goes to show what kind of friends that I have, and many of you have offered to help me all the time.. I am very moved by that. Thanks again! I had on my $250 pair of Allen Edmond shoes and nice clothes and looked real good other than my bug eyes. Dave always looks sharp, too! But, the doctor and the nurse thought that we were a "couple" and asked, "Do you live together?" Very awkward!!! I was laughing as I told them we did not. Debbi is coming to my appointment tomorrow! We could not afford to have Debbi miss 8 hours of work- remember I had no income since the end of September. I finally was approved for long term disability after I submitted 20 pages of questions to MetLife.. I also did this without the aid of a lawyer. Knowing I have this provides some comfort if things keep heading in the wrong direction.. it was a huge weight taken off of my shoulders.
Happy Birthday to my baby Carlee on the 15th!
This is her watering the flowers naked outside of our home on Harry Court. She loves it when I pull this one out! And actually, when she graduated High School, Mallory put this picture in a frame for all to see at her grad party. We will always have our sense of humor!
This is Carlee now- what a beauty! She must get the good looks from me, haha. :) But just you wait, Carlee.. we'll see what happens next time when you use all the hot water for your shower again!
Mallory, your birthday is on the 22nd and I'm pulling out the photo albums! I would start kissing my butt if I were you!