Snakes, Cats and Snake Whisperers

Hi y’all!  It has been raining here like crazy.  We did get our walk in, 1 hour 7 minutes and 2.12 miles.  It was an eventful walk today.  Jeffrey decided he was going to go with us.He also said he wanted to walk with us over the summer.  So we gathered up umbrellas and took off.  Today we had two cats walking with us, Zippy and Jetty.  They actually went all the way out and back with us and we didn’t have to carry them.  So on the first part of the walk we stumbled over a dead snake.  Not sure what type it was but it was dead.  Jeffrey even said the head had been ripped off.  We walked on and took off on the second part of the walk.  The cats of course took off with us and there happened to be a car coming.  Jetty disappears when he hears a car but Zippy was impossible to be herded.  The car had to slow down because she was daring around like a pinball machine ball.  They eventually drove on by but the look they gave really said that they didn’t believe that cats will walk with us like dogs!  Well, only me.  Anyway we started back on the last part of the walk and there was a huge worm in the middle of the road.  I stepped over it and Jeffrey came up to it and said it was a snake because it was standing up.  It didn’t stand up when I almost stepped on it.  Annie looked at it and decided it was a snake too.  We attempted to get it to move and it wouldn’t.  Snakewhisperer Jeffrey got a stick and shooed it off the road.  It was pink on top and really rose-pink underneath.  It tried to get away from him but he told it “no, get over there” because you know all, all snakes speak English.  Then Jetty and Zippy came back and attempted to take care of it and he shooed them away and told them no.  The snake tried to slither on up the way but he ended up safe in the weeds.  I had no idea Jeffrey had that in him. He loves all animals (we all do) and that is due to our love for them at our house. (You ever seen the thing on Facebook that says the only regret that I have is not having enough room to save all the homeless cats in the world?  Yeah that is us.) So we continued on our way back over the dead snake and then I almost stepped on an orange lizard.  It was the cutest thing ever!  It ended up trying to play dead because we were freaking it out, stomping all around it and taking pictures of it.  IMG_0660 IMG_0672

Annie napped a while and we took off to the thrift stores. We hadn’t been in a while and every now and again you can really find something good.  St. Vincent’s was getting ready to close but I found a few low sugar, low carb cookbooks and a shake weight.  Yes folks, a shake weight.  Not sure why but I have always wanted one of those.  As ignorant as it looks, it may really help me tone my arms.  Or make me look more ignorant than I can even possibly accomplish on my own.  Either way, I hope it helps.  We went to Goodwill too but there was nothing there at all that appealed to us.  I am also looking for a sugar-free buttermilk pie recipe and so far what I have seen is use the same amount of Splenda as sugar.  If anyone has any suggestions, please comment!  We ate supper at Denny’s and yes I had my favorite.  I went way over my carbs but I don’t plan on doing this much.  I did drink tea with sweetener and that was good.  And of course we wrapped up the day with Wal-Mart.  I have also been grooving on the Hawaiian Punch Sugar Free mix for water bottles so I bought more of that and more water.  It truly is as sweet as sugar.  We had a good day.

Let me tell you the story of Annie.  She got pulled over the other night on her way to work.  Apparently they were looking for specific colored pick-up trucks that had been involved in smashing mailboxes.  She said the cop was very cheery and when she couldn’t find her license, he just wrote her plate number down and let her go.  Obviously she was not the person.  She knows better than that.  She said she almost told the cop to call her mom.  🙂  No explanation is needed there.

Our morning schedule has changed quite a bit since we have added the walking.  I get Jeffrey on the bus and try to take my meds and eat before she gets home from work.  Then we take off and walk our hour or whatever.  She eats her breakfast when we get back and we play Random Impractical Jokers.  I select them on the DVR, and since there will be no new ones until July (gasp–cry–sniff sniff), I run the selector bar and up and down and look away and we shout out to stop and randomly start one.  It is a good game with excellent results.  You may try it sometime with any show.  Then she goes to bed and I fix lunch for Derek and start our lunch later which we don’t need ready until mid-afternoon.  Boring it may seem but it is what we do.  I am just glad I have figured out a way to work exercise in.

As promised, here are more entries from Caringbridge.  There are so many other things I would like to say about all this but I will blog another post on it specifically after I finish all the Carinbridge entries.  The next four seem short so I will put all of them here. It seemed like I wrote more when we were there but I also know what a job it was to stay alert and with the program. I have also caught several spelling errors but I am leaving them as I had posted them  I know this may make no sense but this event completely changed and directed our lives, even up until now.  I feel it is just important to share it with those who may either need the encouragement or would like to know what happened to get us to where we are now.

Just a few things I have been trying to remember to post.  Some people want to know what he can or can’t have here.  No fruit/vegetables, and no fresh flowers.  Most everything else would be ok.  We as the family can pretty well have what we need to in order to be here but we have to really watch what he has now that the chemo has started.  Yesterday was his first official day of chemo.  His treatments started about 1am and didn’t really end until around 2PM.  He has been sooo, soooo sick.  I didn’t expect that this early.  It just now struck me this may be a repeat of some of yesterday–sorry if it is.  Just bear with me, I am not with the program on some things.  He livened up around 4 or so.  He at some food, then had a whole McFlurry and 2 cans of Spaghettio’s before he went to bed, and some candy in the middle of the night.  Unfortunately the candy and Spaghettio’s were not kind when the chemo started again.  He has been up a bit. and has been sick twice but again they gave him the meds that knocks the nausea but puts him out.  As bad as I hate to say it, that is looking like the best way for him to deal with this at this point.  He is whiney at times, but for the most part, he was over there being social like he always is until the chemo kicked in.  As of right now he is snoozing and only waking up to pee or something.  He has another round of chemo around 1 this afternoon and if he feels like it then I am gonna take him out to the waiting room to see family.  Again I want to thank you for all your love and support! 

I missed a day there trying to get some stuff accomplished.  You would all be amazed at the amount of papers to fill out, things to send in, meetings and educational opportunities they have.  They told me yesterday that his leukemia count was going down.  That was excellent news!  But this morning, his bone marrow tests came back and they show that he is in the low risk category for treatment and he will not need a bone marrow transplant!  This increases his chances of survival to 70%!  What a great Christmas present!!!!  His leukemia count is still going down and is still responding to chemo well.  He has been up, playing UNO and playing on the computer and he ate a slice of cheese pizza!  I am sooo happy!  Thank you all for the prayers and love and support!  As soon as I know more I will post it!  Thank you all so much!!!

Hello again!  Jeffrey is continuing to respond well to the chemo treatments.  The percentage of blasts in his blood went from 23% on Tuesday to 4% on Wednesday, with blasts being what should always register as 0.  He is starting to get restless, grumpy and yelling and screaming where everyone can hear him all over the floor.  I know he wants to go home, but I need to research the chemo to see if that happens to either be a side effect, or if it is affecting his Strattera.  He tends to act like this when he is either preparing to be sick or when he is tired as well, so this will take a bit for me to figure out what, if anything than the obvious, is causing it.  Otherwise he was up, played Scrabble yesterday afternoon, ate chips and drank orange pop at 2AM today.  He is hanging in there and doing well from what  I can tell.  I want to thank everyone for all they are doing and sending.  I don’t have time to name everyone here, but in the future there will be a post of thanks for everything everyone has done.  Again I want to thank you for all the love and support! 

Happy New Year!  Woo hoo!  Well it is almost New Year’s Day.  I realized I haven’t updated in a while so here goes. 

Just a short update up until Monday—Jeffrey would start out every morning by being ill.  In the evening, he would eat a little but not much.  He was told if he didn’t pick up he would have to go on the bagged nourishment.  Well over the weekend, when he would get sick, he would go ahead and try to eat as much as he could in the PM.  He did very well and kep everything down.  They thought a blood culture had some sort of oddity in it, but they retested it and it came back clear.  In the process of that, an antibiotic they started him on had irritated him and his skin had broken out in a rash.  As time went on, they discontinued this antibiotic, and the rash cleared but came back, especially under his dressing.  They also say this rash is a side effect of low platelets, but as of today they are going to start him on a regular allergy med to help with the itching. 

Monday was Jeffrey’s last chemo treatment for this round!  Woo hoo!  This means we are getting one step closer to going home for a while.  He was still pukey up until Tuesday, but Wednesday he ate all day long and didn’t puke except when he gulped his drink too fast.  Everything he is eating he has kept down!  His ANC has finally fell to 0, and when that happens they say the kids tend to sleep more and they say it feels as if they have the flu.  So far, not Jeffrey.  He has been up and running the halls the last three days.  We went to the New Year’s countdown until 12noon party in the lobby today.  He got to meet 2009 Olympic gold medalist Bridget Sloan.  I have a picture that I will post later when I get time.  The last three days have been very days!  I expect he will wear himself down before the numbers come up, but as long as we want roam, roam we shall do! 

I went ahead and researched some things, and others I have wanted to research a bit more.  Jeffrey has leukemia, the AML type, and that is also classified into types.  The type he has is M2.  So far, everything I have read on M2 states that it has a better outlook for recovery as opposed to some of the others in the list, the list being M0 to M7.  The Dr. said this was the “good kind” to have.  That is good news as well that he has the treatable type.   The Dr. also this type was also referred to as t 8,21 which means translocation in your chromosomes 8 and 21, if I have understood that correctly. 

The amount of information thrown at you during these times is so immense, and I am usually good at keeping everything straight.  I also learned how to change his dressing earlier in the week, and I will be shown how to change the caps on his central line as well as flush it.  

I will be a long time trying to thank everyone for all they have done for us, and continue to do for us.  So, I shall start here, by saying thank you for all the love, support, and help during this time!  All of us appreciate it very very much!   

This is all for today.  I have church tomorrow and I teach Sunday school to the kids so I better get rested up.  I hope y’all have a great night and a Blessed Sunday!


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