To: Family & Friends

Date: May 14, 2013

Subject: Treatment #5, day one

This was originally an email written to my family and friends on the date above. I decided to make these public in the event they may be helpful to someone in the future who is embarking on a similar journey to mine.

Hi Everyone–

Things are trucking along for me. I had another productive “off” week, while the side effects continued to extend longer from the treatment day. The checkin with my doctor yesterday confirmed that everything is still on track.

This is my 5th of 12 potential treatments. Because my cold sensitivity extended for 11 of the 14 days of the last cycle, my doctor reduced my dosage of Oxaliplatin by about 20% (that’s the one that induces most of the side effects). I’ll keep tracking my side-effects, though the warm weather we’re having now should really help with the ambient cold sensitivity issues.

I have a PET scan scheduled for next Wednesday; hopefully we’ll see some positive results from all of the treatment.

As my doctor says, “it’s a bit of a dance”. We’ll continue making adjustments based on my results. The current plan is to continue treatments through the full cycle (12 treatments, 6 months). After the 8th treatment I’ll be taking an extra “off” week as we’re going to Minnesota to visit with Heather’s extended family. I’m looking forward to the trip, and to the extra “off” week.

On Sunday I was able to get out and play my first full 18 hole round of golf since the surgery/diagnosis/etc. I got tired towards the end, but it was really nice to be outside doing something active. I played 9 holes two weeks ago, and again on Saturday (joining a threesome of pretty good golfers). It felt good to be able to just play and not need to bring up health excuses. For those who are interested, you can follow my golf progress (or lack thereof) here:

http://golfshot.com/members/0160127730/

I’m trying to work on a few swing improvements but have to choose (for now) between hitting range balls and playing golf. So far it’s more of the latter, with the knowledge that improvement will be slow and inconsistent. :)

After golfing, my back was pretty tired and sore. I miss being able to take my “vitamin I” after each round. I didn’t get many workouts in this week; that’s something I need to be more diligent about on my next “off” week.

Work is continuing to be productive on my “off” weeks and I’m getting better at using my lucid hours during my “on” weeks to get some things done as well. I love building stuff and miss being away from my team and working with them on projects.

I’m continued to be blessed with wonderful support from my family, friends and team at work. My parents are out visiting again this week (Heather and I snuck out to see Iron Man 3 on Sunday night) and my sister came out for a few days during my last treatment week. My friend Joe spent the day with me yesterday providing chauffeur service and hanging out with me at treatment (and it’s a full day – 8am-4pm or so).

My team at work has continued to crank along very nicely. I started taking steps to remove myself from the critical path on client projects about a year ago (to let me focus more on building product), and that has paid off nicely given the situation I now find myself in. I’m really thankful to have quality people I can trust and rely on.

I also really appreciate the notes, emails, texts, etc. that you’ve been sending. While my “off” weeks feel somewhat normal, I do feel a bit isolated at home resting during the “on” weeks.

Until next time!

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