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Intro - Husband has Stage IV

katefm's picture
katefm
Posts: 112
Joined: Oct 2006

Hi everyone-

I've been lurking for a while...with courage to post tonight. I find it wonderful that everyone has the humor and wherewithall to call themselves the "semicolons"!

Anyway, my husband, 37 yrs old, was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer in mid-September. He had 18 inches of his colon removed. He's got several large mets to his liver, plus some tiny nodes on his abdominal wall. He's on Folfox, Oxaliplatin, and Avastin. So far he seems to be handling it well, but he's had some episodes where he gets pretty sick. We are done with his first cycle soon, and he gets his first scan the week of December 11th. The doctor said that he would be happy if everything stabilized. I would be happy with a 50% reduction in tumor size! ;)

Since his diagnosis, I've completely revamped our diets - we are now 50-80% organic, husband is on a vitamin regime, and we're drinking green tea and water like it's going out of style. My husband's cousin is a holistic nutritionist, so she's been helping us a lot. It's been a real eye-opener for me. We weren't terribly unhealthy before, but we weren't eating nearly enough veggies either.

We have two young kids - a 3 year old girl and a 6 month old boy. Needless to say, his diagnosis was a bit of a shock for us. When we brought him to the hospital we thought he had a stomach virus. The week just kept getting worse, and eventually we found out he had cancer. I guess from that day on, we just decided that my husband will beat it - he needs to for the kids. I'm very heartened when I see all the posts here and I know my husband can do it.

One of our biggest motivators (besides faith) is the fact that another cancer survivor challenged my husband to beat 600 cards. At first we thought "600 cards? We don't even know that many people!" Well, now my husband runs to the mailbox. We're up to around 450 cards. Since September! It's one of the highlights of our day. We're now getting cards from friends of friends of friends, and whole classrooms full of kids. It's really awe inspiring how willing people are to do kind things for others.

Thanks for your positive outlooks and support. I'm very glad to have found this board.

Kate

scouty's picture
scouty
Posts: 1976
Joined: Apr 2004

On a day when a few of my dearest semi-colon friends had their testing and I nervously await their results, I hate seeing this many "newbies" in 1 day. BUT, like Stacy I too am a stage IV survivor (rectal cancer with mets to liver and left lung) just not as far along as girlfriend is.

Kate, your diet changes are huge and will help your husband's body better handle the chemo, but most importantly help his body fight off the ******* cells. I never really thought about cancer as a thing, I always thought of it as millions of cells and tried to attack them with that in mind, you don't do one thing, you do many things.

I love your card and mail routine. I have kept all the ones I got and when I was having a bad day I would read them all and still do. They seem to refuel my soul and rekindle my spirit. I never felt like I was fighting my fight alone, I knew I had hundreds of people thinking and praying for me. I know it helped me and still does. Now I am working on how to "repay" all those wonderful people.

Now that I am now NED (no evidence of disease), I have no idea what date to use as my anniversary since my personal situation was not like anyone elses I know (my onc and I will talk about it next). BUT it is over 2 years since chemo and my latest testing a few weeks ago were the best results I've ever had.

You should read some of the personal web pages of some of the folks you meet here if you want to learn more about some of the most wonderful people on this earth. Sorry, I am a little partial.

They helped me save my life and I will never forget it or them. I completely expect you to have the same success.

Just keep asking questions and let us help when you need it. As a caregiver, you are a true angel and we want to keep your wings lubricated.

Lisa P.

vinny3's picture
vinny3
Posts: 933
Joined: Jun 2006

Hi Kate,

Sorry to meet you here as it means one more fighting the beast. But welcome and this is where your husband and you will beat that beast. It sounds like you are doing all the right things. What city do you live in? We are an international group. Let us know the results of the followup scan. We pray that it will show dramatic improvement.

Dick

spongebob's picture
spongebob
Posts: 2599
Joined: Apr 2003

Ahoy, Kate -

Welcome to the SemiColons! you know, even though you still have all of yours (colon), you're still a member of the famil being that you are a caregiver - the most important personin a SemiColon's life!

Sounds like you guys are doing awesome stuff - CONGRATS! I was also so pleased to hear about your husband's attitude. Attitude is 80% of the cure. i was Dxed at the same age as your husbandand I am doing fine now.

Encourage him to come here himself and chat.

Welcome.

- SpongeBob

nudgie's picture
nudgie
Posts: 1483
Joined: Sep 2006

Good morning Kate and welcome to best board on the Net. You will find friends, help, advice and most of all support from this wonderful family. I know they HELPED me get to the point I am at now.

Tell you husband to NEVER give up hope and faith.

jams67's picture
jams67
Posts: 927
Joined: May 2006

Do email cards count? We could sure help out there. I will also keep him in my prayers. Wish I could be there to help with the babies. jams

valeriec's picture
valeriec
Posts: 350
Joined: Oct 2006

Hi Kate,
you have come to the right place-welcome.
Let us know on those up coming scans. I will keep your family in my prayers. I am a caregiver also. My mom is stage 4, and doing great. Never give up hope.
ValerieC

Betsydoglover's picture
Betsydoglover
Posts: 1256
Joined: Jul 2005

Hi Kate -

Welcome - it is a scary thing to make your first post (I did that in June 2005), but you have come to the right place. You sound very positive and that is great - I am also Stage IV and currently NED (no evidence of disease). There is hope. Keep coming back here with questions, letting us know your husband's status etc.

Take care,
Betsy

AuthorUnknown
Posts: 1560
Joined: May 2006

Hi Kate,

I would also like to say welcome. I am so sorry that you are having to go through this. You do sound so positive and that is a very important thing. My hubby was dx'd in June 05 and is stage 4. Even when you know they are sick it is hard to hear the word cancer. I cried for months. Although my hubby is on his second course of treatments, he still works every day and does basically all he did before. Except for thinning hair, no one would even guess that he is receiving chemo. He too has a positive attitude. Please continue to post. I do not post often but read regular. This site has been such a help to me. When the doctor mentions something new, it is not as scary because I have usually read something about it on this site. My hubby does not post but I tell him all the encouraging posts and especailly about the stage 4 NED folks. Good luck and keep the postive thought.

pink05
Posts: 553
Joined: Mar 2006

Hi Kate,

Welcome to this site. I honestly don't know what I would do without all of the wonderful people on this site. When my dad was first diagnosed, all I could do is type in the words "colon cancer" on the web, and researched so much information. I needed to turn to something for advice and comfort. Well those "research" sites were not the best places for me to turn. They provided a lot of grim info. and statistics. I then found this site and never went back to those medical sites that always put me down in the dumps. You will find so much support and advice here. Sounds like you and your husband are on the right track as far as diet goes. Keep doing what you are doing. I think it will definitely give your husband the fuel to fight this thing. I will keep you both in my prayers.

God bless,

-Lee-

levensweg
Posts: 55
Joined: Jul 2006

Kate,

Thank you for coming aboard and sharing your story. I'm a stage 4 cc suvivor as well. There are lot's of them here and that's why I like this place.

You sound like such a great caregiver and wife! This is so important. My family was critical in my healing. I was diagnosed when I was 32 yrs old. My daughter was 2 and I know what you mean about needing to do it for the kids. My daughter was a guiding light who taught me how to live each moment fully.

This place helped me in so many ways. Technically, emotionally. Especially knowing that I wasn't the only guy under fifty with cancer... there are so many, I've realized.

Keep strong and faithful. I wish you and your family only the best.

-Lev

rosane
Posts: 12
Joined: Nov 2006

Hi kate
My hubby too was diagnosed on 6/06 with stage IV with mets to the liver. He was on the same regimen as yours - he is 47 - and since he is otherwise healthy, the results were amazing - 50% shrinkage or more. He is going this friday for a surgery to remove his last small tumor in the liver and should go for more 6 months on chemo, but in remission. We have small children also. But my husband does not agree on changing his diet, no matter what. The docs tell them not to, and I am changing what I can at home. Keep the faith, it can be done. Please e-mail me privately if you need to. We are all here for you
rosanew@optonline.net

Need Hope
Posts: 1
Joined: Dec 2016

Hello  ,  Day 1 one this site for me.   My wife of 42 years , whom is 64 just retired elementary teacher, very athletic , ate   healthy, excercised did not drink or smoke was diaganosed with stage 4 stomach cancer this September.  The surgeon who put in her pic and feeding tube was great very positive.  Radiation doctor terrible all doom and gloom radiation not a possibility.   Chemo doctor started good ...I will cure you...when he thought it was localized ..   Now just hope to control.  We have faith in cure and longer life.  We have gone to an integrative medicine clinic to help with diet.   She has lost about 13 pounds due to nausea after treaments .  But the clinic has helped to stabilize her weight  gained a pound this week.  She originally had the feeding tube placed becasue we thought there would be radiation treatment (not anymore) and because her main tumor was loctaed between her upper stomach and lower esophagus.   But she has been able to eat just about anything since Nov 25th.   Asked our oncolohist when she might have the feeding tube removed, he kind of suggested never, because he said " your cancer will come back".  Just looking for help and hope ..  I believe we can be this crap.

JanJan63's picture
JanJan63
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

Many people live with cancer just like they live with arthritis or other maladies that are not something that can be eliminated. And often people with stage four cancers live long past what the doctors suggest. Never give up hope, please.

And please start a thread of your own, you will get more responses than on an old thread. Postive thoughts for you and your wife!

Jan

Joan M's picture
Joan M
Posts: 411
Joined: Oct 2016

It is always sad to hear the about the new cases.  The difference in doctors attitudes is hard to believe.  They always tell you they cannot cure stage 4 cancer. Even though they may be correct, there are many people whose cancer goes into remission and survive for several years. 

I was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer 10 months ago.  My first doctor said I would have only 6 to 18 months. I thought my health would just continue to decline and that I would die in a year or so.  However, my tumors have shrunk and I feel better now than prior to the diagnosis.  I saw a doctor at Mayo Clinic said who said I will likely have many years of life ahead of me. He showed me on the CT scans how the tumors were dying off and shrinking.  That helped my outlook immensely as you can imagine. 

This forum helped me by learning about the ones who have survived long term. 

So you know,  the thread you posted on is 10 years old.  You may want to start a new thread seeking information from those with similar diagnosis. 

I hope you find a good medical team.  I wish you and your wife the best of luck.

Joan M

 

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