(Of "Alexander and the no good, terrible, very bad day" fame.)
I'm not even sure I know where to start or how to explain
all of this.
I will start by saying that at several points during the
past two weeks BOTH Kyle and I have said to each other...
"Welp this is it. I'm dying."
"I think this is the beginning of the end."
Not that you're not ALWAYS dying when you have
terminal cancer--it's just that the "dying dying"
was postponed for a while. You always know it's there
waiting in the wings, ready to pounce again at a
But we were pretty certain it was here.
In fact if you were sitting outside of Clinic 1A
with us today, the mood was dim.
We were certain that Kyle had tipped and that he
had tipped the wrong way.
It's been an awful week. Or two.
Full of vomit and sleeping and coughing and more
vomit and more weight loss and ascites and weakness...
...and well all the things that would indicate a
patient with liver cancer was, in fact, DYING of
So when Joan bounced in with an almost smile on her
face today we were a bit taken back.
Certainly she wouldn't be smiling if she was telling
us this was "the end", right?
She said "Kyle your bilirubin has dropped, it's going
back the RIGHT direction and so are your other liver
What? He was going THE RIGHT DIRECTION?
As in the "not dying" direction?
A long story short we are cautiously optimistic that
he has indeed finally tipped, the RIGHT way, which
would indicate LIVER TOXICITY instead of liver failure.
His liver is starting to heal from all the radiation
and chemo and starting to function better again.
One must always be guarded in celebration, since this
is terminal cancer after all.
But we breathed out just a little today.
He does have a few OTHER problems though. (what's new?)
He is severely dehydrated and had to have a bag or
two of fluids to replace the sodium and electrolytes
that he is loosing every time we drain the ascites
(fluid off of his belly).
The symptoms he's having from that are bad enough.
And mimic some symptoms of liver failure.
He ALSO has an infection in his "Drain Hole"
AND a severe severe sinus infection - which are all
contributing to the never ending cycle of vomiting
and coughing and feeling miserable.
And also mimic some symptoms of liver failure.
He's been put on a 3 week course of antibiotics to
kick some infection.
He will have home health come in a few times a week
to hydrate him via a saline bag or two so he can
get on top of the dehydration.
In all the craziness of cancer and dying that
simple small things could blow up to be big problems
on top of what we're already dealing with.
Next week more labs to make sure numbers are still
tipping the right way.
I'm not sure this makes sense to even me--but this
is our update for today.
It was a pretty crazy day all in all.
That's what we've got!