Thursday, November 09, 2006

22. Tartan Time

(Photos: Edinburgh Castle at Night; More Photo's from Beefy's Walk for Leukaemia Research; 1 year since my Old Man came on his Surprise Trip to Scotland)

As the next countdown begins, another one has finished. Over the past year since diagnosis, it seems that life is now full of countdowns…waiting for the clock to tick down and give me either a result, a break away from it all, another test and occasionally it’s just the microwave telling me that my sausage rolls are ready…

The ‘rogue’ PCR result of 7% that I received a couple of months ago, has been confirmed to have been a mistake. After a chat with the doc, he explained that the test is so sensitive and sometimes due to human error, the result we get at the end can be faulty. This was all confirmed when he told me that the next test came back at 2.3%...not a bad result I thought, but not too good either. As the test before was 1.5%, it may seem that I have plateaued and no longer continuing the decline that we were all loving to see. My appointment was yesterday with the doc at the Haematology Ward, he has decided to continue the Gleevec and monitor me with another PCR test on the 13th December, this time hoping we can see the number dip under 1%. If not, we will then look at other options that will combat the Leukaemia, and that includes the new medication that is only just becoming available for Gleevec resistant patients and there is also the option of the risky transplant. The blood tests were all fine and showing no change to the ‘norm’. It’s funny that if another doctor took a blood test, it would seem like there isn’t anything wrong with me. Not sure what else I can do until the next test then…might have to give the dodgy sausage rolls a miss…

As the time has ticked down to get the latest result, the next thing I am looking forward to is our trip back to Australia for two weeks. Kas and I are leaving the bonny (and very cold) shores of Scotland on the 22nd November and will be sunning ourselves 24 hours later in Sydney. The week will be a busy one, filled with catch ups with family, friends and my new wee nephew who’s getting bigger by the minute…then it’s off to Adelaide and the Barossa Valley for my mate Drew and Alana’s wedding. Hopefully I’ll be posting a few photos of the Aussie boys taking back the Ashes from the Poms after we see the game at the Adelaide Oval.

Until we head back to Oz though, it will be a pretty busy couple weeks. We are heading over to Ireland tomorrow night for the weekend to give some friends a fairly rare visit…we are just needing a trip away to relax. It’s hard when it’s the busiest time of year in my work… the Scots keep buying plenty of booze to keep me in a job though! Then it’s time to don the Scottish skirt and put the kilt with the Sinclair tartan back on again; we will be attending the Anthony Nolan Scottish Daisy Ball on the 18th November. It’s a good way to show our support for such a good and worthy charity, they are expecting 800 people so it should be a good night!

So until the next post when I return from sunny Oz, keep the emails and messages coming in. They are good to read and help keep us in a positive attitude for a future that will no doubt be bumpy at times…

*Kilimanjaro Climb, February 2008 – Anthony Nolan Trust:


Anonymous said...

Hi Matt,

I was diagnosed with CML 2 years ago and like you I will never forget the day I was told. I have been on gleevec, AMN107 and now on Sprycel which has shown far better results for me.

I would like to wish you and your family all the best for the future. I know without the support and love of my family and friends I would not have got through this.

My husband and son are doing an arctic challenge for the anthony nolan trust (I notice you have also raised money for them). They have raised £10,000 already and are still receiving money. I have been found a match for a transplant but my consultant wants to wait a while to see how I am on Sprycel as a transplant can have many risks, including I have been told fatality. Its and lot to take in and can be very frightening at times.

Take Care,

Bev Francis-Green

Anonymous said...

I used to think Heroes were easy to recognize by their fancy uniforms and shiny medal. I used to believe they were always the people in the
newspaper headlines and history books.

But through the years of my life, I’ve seen Heroes that look a lot like teachers, doctors, nurses, family members, neighbors and friends.

There are Heroes who risk their lives for those they may never meet. And there are everyday Heroes all around us who quietly lend

A gentle hand
a listening ear,
a healing touch.
Some Heroes wear handsome uniforms.
Some Heroes are clothed in the aging body of a grandparent or the innocent spirit of a child.
I used to think Heroes were easy to recognize…..

Now I understand, they’re just ordinary people with extraordinary hearts.
Hearts that reach out to a stranger in need without expecting to be noticed and without ever realizing the life changing difference they have made.

Heroes are just like you.

Thank you for being one of mine!

Wishing you the best as we head into the Thanksgiving Season…………GOBBLE! GOBBLE!

God Bless,

Stacy Dvorak
Shakopee, MN
United States

Anonymous said...

Hi Matt,

I hope you’re ok. I’m surprised you managed to take your eyes off the girl next to you long enough to look at the camera, well done! Any progress on the transplant decision or are you still a little unsure? I hope the PCR results are sill coming down and you’re managing to get on with your busy lifestyle.

I’ve had a rough couple of week now with laryngitis and a chest infection so I’m stuck at home recovering.

I’ll check in again soon to see how you are.

Take care mate,