Saturday, January 07, 2006

Still Fighting!

Tanya’s birthday is coming up (Friday, January 13), so I thought I better hurry up and post something. Tanya is doing okay, but we don’t know how things are going to be from day to day, and many family members are sick, so we’re not planning a get-together. We wouldn’t have gone out anyway, since it’s an ordeal for Tanya to get out of the house these days—and for Steve to help her. Also, we don't like to have many visitors other than healthy family and nurses since, depending on how things are going, Steve or Tanya often is not feeling great or may have had a sleepless night.

Tanya has been coughing a lot, so she has had her lung drained by a hospice nurse many times recently. It is very painful at the end of the process, but Steve says Tanya barely complains. Tanya is one tough fighter.

Tanya had a blood transfusion shortly before Christmas to make her feel better, so she was feeling decent for our Christmas feast at my dad’s house with Dad, Julie, Dave, and Ed. (Ed is Steve and Tanya’s magician friend, who did a great trick for us.) Tanya’s mother had been very sick, was running a fever, and didn’t want to risk making Tanya sick, so she couldn’t join us. Tanya’s sister had taken her grandson to the ER that morning. It turned out that he had pneumonia, and so Chris stayed at the hospital with him. We hope to get together with Tanya’s mom and sister and have another Christmas dinner when everyone is well.

Tanya has had a pain pump for the back pain for a while now. That is making her more comfortable—she doesn’t ask for extra pain medication as much—but it makes her loopy to varying degrees, recently more so. Therefore, Tanya’s pain specialist changed the medication in the pain pump this week, and Tanya is already more alert and able to communicate better. Recently, the face and feet puffiness from drugs seems to be going down, too.

Tanya won’t have another chemo treatment until she gains some more strength. Our last report about the lack of tumor cells in Tanya’s spinal fluid turned out to be mistaken. However, we have some good news on that front. Several recent checks of Tanya’s spinal fluid have been clear of cancer cells!

As always, we thank you, everyone, for all you’ve been doing to lift Steve and Tanya’s spirits!
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