This morning we visited with my doctor to review my immune system profile, and discuss treatment options. It appears that my immune system has decreased to such a point that I am unable to take the next prescribed dose of chemo treatment (which was to be today). If we attempt the prescribed dose on time, then I would likely end up in the hospital for a long period with symptoms similar to acute leukemia. This would also prevent my entry into the Hospice program, and we all agree this type of support is needed now.
I took an immune booster shot today, and will review my blood profile again on Monday. But the truth is that I must be able to take this full-strength chemo as prescribed on time in order to have any chance at the desired palliative effect (intended to slow the cancer temporally). So I will not likely be able to take future rounds of this chemo on time either.
In essence, my body cannot tolerate this chemo; and thus I will not be able to use it to extend my life. If I keep making attempts in this direction, then the last few weeks of my life will be in the hospital. If I discontinue chemo treatments, then my life span may be similar, but these last few weeks will be spent at home under care of a Hospice nurse with better pain and infection management. I will also be among my family at home, and be able to spend some quality time with them on the good days.
The choice is obvious. No doctor has told me my time span, and I have not asked the question. Based on my body, and how changes are occurring, I feel that it may not go beyond the first half of October. But I know that when the time comes, I will be surrounded by love, support, and be made as physically comfortable as possible.
I will try to keep writing entries as inspiration comes, in these last few weeks. I have promise from my father and wife, to convert this blog into a small booklet when I am gone, so it can further be shared with those in need.
God Bless You All.