I had taken some time off from forums

RickMurtagh
RickMurtagh Member Posts: 587 Member
edited March 2011 in Colorectal Cancer #1
I had taken some time off from the forums I visit to get some mental healing from all the deaths that had occurred on this and other boards. Turns out my mental healing finished just in time to allow me to deal with a new stage in my life- stage 4.

I don't have much in the way of specifics, except it is bad. Involvement in the sacrum, the intramedullary space, presacral region, both pelvic side walls, encasement of the distal ileal loop and a "massive tumor" to boot.

The CT films look amazing. Sadly, now I know what I am looking at and I did not need to see the radiologist's report to know I was in trouble.

Both my surgeon and oncologist are working toward getting me to see a doctor at MSKCC. I forget his name - begins with a P I think. The day was pretty traumatic over all, so I can't recall for sure.

On the upside I get to watch a CT guided percutaneous biopsy of a sacral mass. Then downside is, of course, it is my mass.

Oh, and I get a new PET scan - those things are so cool. The software for viewing them is kind of crappy and only allows you to export the images one at a time and considering the number of them and the options for viewing them, it is just not practical.

It looks a lot like I will have an ileostomy again (permanent this time), assuming I survive long enough to get to that point. I do not mean to sound alarmist or pessimistic, I just don't know enough details yet and I am of course nervous, since much of the area is not operable, just treatable. I assume treatment is largely radiation, but it is still early and as I said, I don't have much information yet.

At least this all explains why my post takedown recovery has been going so poorly.

On an up note, we have had my daughter and grandson visiting for the better part of ten days now and it has been such a happy time. I really hated to have to tell my daughter the news and add some rain clouds to the visit, but I thought that batter than telling her after she got back to Colorado. She leaves tomorrow and we just had my appointment today and I would rather tell her face to face than over the phone. The calls to the boys were very hard to make.

If you are a praying type, I covet your prayers - selfishly for me, but mostly for my wife, Sally.

Rick
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Comments

  • herdizziness
    herdizziness Member Posts: 3,624 Member
    Damn Rick
    You both have my prayers, my hopes and some hugs from me.
    Glad to see you again, so sorry about the circumstances.
    You can do this, it just sucks you have to.
    Love at you,
    Winter Marie
  • Lovekitties
    Lovekitties Member Posts: 3,364 Member
    Dear Rick
    I am so very sorry to hear this news. I know it has been difficult for you and your family to learn.

    I hope that as you explore options with all the doctors they can give you some which offer hope.

    There is no limit on prayers so there are lots for you, your wife and your family. May you all find the strength to deal with things that must be done and to find some bright spots in each day.

    Please stay in touch.

    Hugs,

    Marie who loves kitties
  • Kathleen808
    Kathleen808 Member Posts: 2,342 Member
    Rick
    Rick,
    My prayers are with you and Sally and your kids. I am sorry that the scan showed growth. I hope the doc at MSKCC has a plan for you.
    Thinking of you.

    Aloha,
    Kathleen
  • steved
    steved Member Posts: 834 Member
    can understand
    Sorry tohear of your situation- have had similar news of a similar recurrence myself in last few weeks- pelvic recurrnece after 7 years clear and similarly is not looking operable which as you say moves you into a new stage of dealing with this.

    Give yourself some time to adjust to this mentally as to me it does feel very different than dealing with the primary tumour where the aim was very definitely on cure for us. There are a wide range of good treatments (mainly chemo as radiotherapy whilst used maybe used at the start of treating this type of recurrence is limited due to its side effects on teh other local tissues) that can keep things under control. Quality of every day has now become the focus of my own thinking but I know I am only starting to get my head around this one.

    Keep strong,
    steve
  • herdizziness
    herdizziness Member Posts: 3,624 Member
    Okay guys
    Just remember, I was non-operable, told would never be operable, given six months, got my stuff in order. This was a year ago. I'm still here. I was operated on. Stuff changes, within sometimes a short amount of time to the good.
    After you get over the shock in a month or two (took me that long to finally say screw it, I've got to quit crying everyday)don't start looking at it as a death sentence, it isn't, it's a now what?, chemo for life? That's sucks, but it isn't that bad. I'm on xeloda and avastin, according to my onc, for a few years. I've got my moments, but I've got my life. And I'm running with it.
    Love to you Rick and to you Steve, persevere, persevere. You both have my prayers, thoughts, love and hugs.
    Winter Marie
  • ron50
    ron50 Member Posts: 1,723 Member
    crappy break
    Sorry to hear your news Rick(as I was yours Steve). All I can do is wish you both well and hope for the best possible outcome....Ron.
  • Okay guys
    Just remember, I was non-operable, told would never be operable, given six months, got my stuff in order. This was a year ago. I'm still here. I was operated on. Stuff changes, within sometimes a short amount of time to the good.
    After you get over the shock in a month or two (took me that long to finally say screw it, I've got to quit crying everyday)don't start looking at it as a death sentence, it isn't, it's a now what?, chemo for life? That's sucks, but it isn't that bad. I'm on xeloda and avastin, according to my onc, for a few years. I've got my moments, but I've got my life. And I'm running with it.
    Love to you Rick and to you Steve, persevere, persevere. You both have my prayers, thoughts, love and hugs.
    Winter Marie

    This comment has been removed by the Moderator
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375
    Sheesh! It never rains but pours!
    Hey Rick... I don't think we've met before. I came on the board back in 2007 and then at one point took a long break from because sometimes you just have to do what you have to do for various reasons. I came back, but I guess you were on your break, so we never did actually meet.

    This news is not the news anyone wants to hear... and I agree, a little knowledge can be very dangerous and downright painful. So getting your hands on those reports... now you understand them better, but golly gee whiz, it can also set your imagination going 200 mph!

    There's no getting around it... no matter how much we think we are immune to any new News, the fact remains when it is news that the cancer has come back, or it has spread or anything to do with the cancer not disappearing completely... it is a shock to the system. And that shock is not one that you can give your head a good shake and then it goes away. No, because shaking our head does not empty it... and that's where our imagination seems to be housed... so imagination takes over and comes up with all sorts of horrific scenerios. For me, it really hits home when we have good news and everything seems to be going along just fine, we can reason that oh sure, we can handle it if we were to get bad news... and we are ready for whatever is going to happen in the future. Sure... we are ready and can handle it as long as we are sitting on good news. As soon as we are given any kind of bad news we immediately go into fighting mode because dammit, we are not going to allow "whatever will be will be"... we are stopping that nonsense before it even begins.

    Of course, it takes some time to regroup, re-think, get our ducks in a row... and before we can do all that, we need a complete update from our oncologists and what our plan of attack should be. Once we get that information, then we can tell our imaginations to just settle down... we aren't going down any of those dark roads because we have a plan of action to work on.

    So, keep telling yourself, if your imagination is taking you down those dark, scary roads... this is just your imagination speaking. When the doctors tell you serious, scary news, then fine it's not what you want to hear but you need that background information so that when they tell you the plans they've come up with, it will make it easier to understand the plans when you know what it is you are needing to deal with. If currently, your condition is inoperable (always scary to hear this), then yes, there's the chance it will always be inoperable... then again, it's quite possible the plan of action you and your doctors agree on just might surprise you (and them) and down the road they feel that, in fact, they can operate. Nothing is carved in stone, no matter how dire it might appear. So as soon as you can tell your imagination to calm down... the sooner you will get over the shock and get back into fighting mode.

    You can do it... and we'll all be here so you can bounce your ideas off, or just come in here to vent and blow off some steam.

    Hang in there, Rick!!

    Cheryl
  • Crow71
    Crow71 Member Posts: 679 Member
    This really sucks
    Hey Rick - I don't know if you feel it yet, but you sound strong.

    I've been hoping that you would come back to the board because I miss you and your humor. But I hate having your cancer back as well. This really **** sucks, but I know that you will deal with whatever you need to.

    Promise me this, or at least consider it. Don't lose your sense of humor. Keep that casual, irreverent, hilarious attitude.

    Lots of sparks to you Sally.

    Roger
  • Sonia32
    Sonia32 Member Posts: 1,071 Member
    Rick
    Big hugs to you and your family. Your in my thoughts and prayers. I'm not sure but Rob in Vancouver, might have had a similar diagnosis to you, might be wrong. But I know he has recently had a two day operation? and he got through that.

    You are a strong man, with a great sense of humor and I know with the strength of your family, and friends you can fight this.

    Sonia
  • maglets
    maglets Member Posts: 2,576 Member
    Sonia32 said:

    Rick
    Big hugs to you and your family. Your in my thoughts and prayers. I'm not sure but Rob in Vancouver, might have had a similar diagnosis to you, might be wrong. But I know he has recently had a two day operation? and he got through that.

    You are a strong man, with a great sense of humor and I know with the strength of your family, and friends you can fight this.

    Sonia

    Rick
    ahhhh Rick I am so sorry to hear this totally crappy news....

    wouldn't you just think we could cut a break with this damn@# disease but no

    hold on Rick whilst we hold you

    mags


    PS may I say you are a VERY handsome guy in your new pic
  • geotina
    geotina Member Posts: 2,111 Member
    Rick:
    I was wondering where you were. Well, you sure received some crappy news, like getting hit by a bus, we along with several others were in your shoes a few short weeks ago so George and I know what you are feeling about now.

    I sent you a pm with some information and direction to a blog of someone who had sacral resection surgery. Hopefully, it is helpful.

    Hang in there for now.

    Hugs - Tina
  • AnneCan
    AnneCan Member Posts: 3,673 Member
    Rick
    I am so sorry to hear this news, I have been wondering how you are. Please let us know the plan as it unfolds. You and yours are in my thoughts. I am glad you had a nice long visit with your daughter + grandson; but sorry you had crummy news to share with them.
  • soccermom13
    soccermom13 Member Posts: 224
    The journey is so not fair!
    You sound like you have a good handle on what is happening so give your self permission to get really angry, cry, pout or whatever it takes and then move on to healing. Try to look for some positive in every day to help your mental healing. You and your family are added to the list of daily prayers being offered up ~ which by the way is not selfish to ask for!
    Many hugs to you!
    Shanna
  • tina dasilva
    tina dasilva Member Posts: 641
    Rick
    Sorry Rick to hear about your cancer coming back but like what Winter Marie said she's right now go on you've kick cancer in the a** before and you can do it again oh ya Megs is all so right about how cute you look in your picture . Stay strong hugs Tina
  • idlehunters
    idlehunters Member Posts: 1,787 Member

    Rick
    Sorry Rick to hear about your cancer coming back but like what Winter Marie said she's right now go on you've kick cancer in the a** before and you can do it again oh ya Megs is all so right about how cute you look in your picture . Stay strong hugs Tina

    Hey Rick....
    I have to agree with everyone else..... this IS crappy news. What a slap in the face. You beat it once and you will beat it again. Once you get a battle plan down and get the cancer killer ball rollin.... thigs will start looking up. I know you are a very strong person and with your attitude....shoot...cancer ain't got a chance!!!! You take care.

    Jennie
  • pepebcn
    pepebcn Member Posts: 6,331 Member

    Hey Rick....
    I have to agree with everyone else..... this IS crappy news. What a slap in the face. You beat it once and you will beat it again. Once you get a battle plan down and get the cancer killer ball rollin.... thigs will start looking up. I know you are a very strong person and with your attitude....shoot...cancer ain't got a chance!!!! You take care.

    Jennie

    Hey Rick ,feel so sorry for the news,I imagine how
    disappointed you must be , but now is time to fight ! We will be here to do it with you!
    Take Care my friend!
  • Lori-S
    Lori-S Member Posts: 1,277 Member
    Rick
    you have my prayers
  • eibod
    eibod Member Posts: 160
    So sorry to hear this, will
    So sorry to hear this, will remember you and your family in my prayers..
  • Buzzard
    Buzzard Member Posts: 3,043 Member
    eibod said:

    So sorry to hear this, will
    So sorry to hear this, will remember you and your family in my prayers..

    Rick...I gotta remember this as I tell you the same..........
    it ain't over til tha fat lady sings........and she isn't even warmed up yet....gotta get the game face on buddy, been through two here and still goin'....you aren't any different than me so do this and get to the other side of it...It will be a whirlwind and you will weather this storm as you did the first ...........Love to you and yours.Clift