Last week I told you all about my meeting Charlie Teo. I left his rooms with no doubt in my mind about the surgery. In fact Sean & I both thought the same. It was a must do. I felt like he threw me a lifeline or perhaps more accurately, now I think of it, perhaps a very good sales speech. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a fabulous surgeon. But what he said he could do for me isn’t a “fix”. A lot of people he operates on have a GBM (worst brain tumour you can get) and have weeks/months to live and have no alternative options. I do have alternative options, I haven’t yet been handed a death sentence.
Still convinced to go ahead with surgery with Charlie, Sean & I (to be sure on our decision) we met with the head of Nuerosurgery at Royal Melbourne Hospital – Assc.Prof Kate Drummond – to get her opinion on surgery. Considering I’m under her care in the clinic for chemo. Kate was wonderful and basically advised she wouldn’t suggest surgery yet, due to my head still healing from radiation. But she did say she could do it and feels she could get a better resection than Charlie could. Due to her surgery being awake surgery. Yes you read correctly. AWAKE brain surgery *gulp*. A local anaesthetic to the head to numb everything and then away she’d go. The brain doesn’t have any nerve receptors so you can’t feel anything. And said if we really want it now, she will do it, but due to my “spectacular” response to radiation she thinks I should do chemotherapy first. Then we will do regular scans and at the signs of any change (growth) or if I decide I just want as much of Terry (Tumour) removed as possible we can operate if we wish and then continue on with chemo.
We were also very happy to hear from Kate about the “spectacular” reduction in tumour from radiation. We hadn’t heard this, they told us last time “stable & slight reduction”…. this is not the same as “spectacular”!!! I’m thrilled with spectacular. Attached is a photo of my MRI, pre-radiation left & post-radiation right. You can see the difference, she’s right this is spectacular! I think this might be the first time I’ve ever shared a pic of Terry. Its definitely not the smallest or unfortunately not the perfect ball either so no quick fix. That’s the problem with my tumour, it’s so intertwined with healthy brain tissue and crosses the central line into the left part of my brain too, so it’s dangerous and very difficult to remove. Kate’s way of surgery enables her to push the boundaries (safely) to get a little more, as you can talk/communicate throughout, from this she knows when she has to stop.
So after dilberating back & forth we’ve decided the best thing to do, is chemotherapy for now as planned then just wait and see on the surgery. I can have it whenever I would like basically and the best bit, it’s fully covered by Medicare. Unless I decide to go private then I’ll just have a bit of out of pocket expense for the hospital stay etc. Surgery will all be decided in time but for now after our “spectacular” news, I am going full boar into chemo. I’ve also visited a holistic GP last week and I’ve started a whole heap of supplements to aid me and I’ve also just started doing Pilates with my sister in law Courtney. Next step is joining a gym too. I’m getting healthy & fit. Fighting Terry with everything I’ve got. I’ve also just purchased a cold press juicer so I can juice anything healthy in sight! Much easier than trying to eat a ten tonne of greens! Haha
Mothers Day on Sunday, my first as a mumma of two. Safe to say I felt pretty special surrounded by my favourite little men (and one big one). Seany arranged a picnic down in Mornington. It was such a nice afternoon to just be hanging about and made me so incredibly happy watching Hux run around kicking his footy with his “dadda”. He’s just growing up so quick. He’s going to be 3 before we know it. Little Reevie also growing so big, so big in fact he was bigger at his 8mth checkup than Huxley was at one. Monster on our hands! I feel absolutely blessed to have these two happy healthy little boys. They make everything better. Sean attempted a nice pic to get all of us looking but no such luck. So here are some of the #outtakes haha
Finally, yesterday (Monday) I took my first dose of Temozolmide (chemo drug). 2 out of 5 days completed. So far so good and no side effects. Let’s hope it stays that way!!
Love Don x
P.S. My drug cocktail including the Temozolomide I’m taking every morning. Followed by more tablets at lunch, dinner & before bed!