Today I am sitting on a beautiful green mountain top feeling a slight breeze while the smell of wild flowers wafts across my face and blows through my long, thick, curly, blonde hair (hey it’s my daydream!) The white puffy clouds dot the blue sky.
Today is a day of rest and reflection. My family and I have been looking forward to this moment for over nine long dark months. It is a day to peer down off this steep mountain peak and realize how far I have climbed. I am tired. I am thirsty. I have blisters and battle wounds but today, “I made it to this mountain peak and the mountain’s under me.”
We met with Dr. Tricot yesterday. I “aced” my tests and scans! All the results indicate that there are no signs of any active myeloma cells. I am in complete remission!
Now I wish I could dance through the field of daisies like Julie Andrews in the Sound of Music and say this is the end of my journey. It is the end of days and weeks living away from the family. It is the end of aggressive, high dose chemo, and two stem cell transplants but it is not time to retire my hiking boots yet.
I will still be undergoing maintenance therapy for the next year.
This involves four chemo injections a month of Velcade, along with a steriod drug, Dexamethesone, and Thalidomide an “anti-cancer” medication. The Doctor explains that this regimen will kill off the “sleeper cells” lurking in my body and give me the possibilities of a much longer remission.
I haven’t felt “normal” for over a year. I told Dr. Tricot that I would love to go off all the medication for a couple weeks to see what I feel like without any side effects. He laughed and explained in his Belgium accent, “You must remember what our objective is, you haven’t reached the finish line yet, but you are doing everything possible to get there and the rest is out of our hands.”
These words brought me comfort and assurance that this dark, difficult journey for our family has been worth it. That I have scaled this steep, sharp, rocky mountain knowing that I am doing everything I can possibly do to reach the top and to extend and improve my life. The rest is in God’s hands.
I am tired. I am thirsty. I have blisters and battle wounds but today, “I made it to this mountain peak and the mountain’s under me.”