July 16, 2009

Back in the High life Again?

 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.” 


Andy and Robyn said...

Kris-that is SUCH good news!!!! I have been waiting all week for you to "post" your results. I talked to Missy last week-she keeps me updated so I don't have to "bug" you with calls. :) I hope you can now "enjoy" the summer, and try not to overdo it! :)

Melinda said...

WOW what great news!!! What a blessing to know that all the "climbing" has been worth it. The view from the top must be awesome, looking down and seeing how far you are you family have come. I will continue to hope and pray that you can enjoy the view from the top for many years to come. You have always been such a strong person, I knew that you could do it.
Thanks for being such an inspiration to all of us.
Love Ya

Beth said...

Hoo-ray, hoo-ray, hoo-ray!!! I know it's not completely over yet, but what a relief for you to know that all of the struggles have paid off!!! I am so happy for you, what a blessing! I've been checking every day to see if you had posted your results yet. I am so glad for all of you.
Love ya,

Anonymous said...

This is great news! I have been checking everyday, I am glad you finally have the results you and everyone were hoping for. It brings tears to my eyes I am so happy! Now you can try to relax and enjoy the rest of the summer. Talk to you soon. Teresa

Kim, denese and kd dog said...

Kris (my Michael Phelps as we now call you).

You have gotten there!!! The view from here looks great. Michael might have gotten 8 medals, you've achieved much much more. We'll go through this next year of Thalidomide, Velcade and Dex with you. You are in our thoughts and prayers always.

denese Kim (MM patient) and kd dog

Alesha LeMmon said...

Kris - We are so very happy for you and your family! It's good to hear the success stories and the faith and ambition you have.

Brenda said...

Hey Kris,
This is very exciting news! congratulations on a battle well fought and a journey taken with grace and faith. I know the journey continues but you are right to celebrate this huge milestone! I am so happy for you and your family and please know that you have my love and healing thoughts always.


Jill Thorpe said...

Kris -
What GREAT news! Congratulations! Prayers have definately been answered.
Love, the Thorpe family

Fourteenth Year Cancerversary

              My husband and I at my 40th High School Reunion.                                                    Am I seriously that old?! ...