My Cancer Story

November 6 All Over Again

Posted 4 March 2016

It had already been a rough week, with yet another visit to the ER with a fever to get IV antibiotics.

Thursday I had a CT, in itself an easy procedure, to evaluate my cancer’s progress during the past 3 cycles.

First thing Friday morning I got the phone call that the CT showed substantial tumor growth, indicating that the chemo is no longer working. It is an all-too-common pattern with GI tumors, that they respond at first but quickly adapt to defend themselves from the chemo drugs.

It felt an awful lot like that Friday morning phone call in November that started this whole odyssey.

I had already decided to take a break from chemo, and to visit other doctors, so this doesn’t change my immediate plans. But there will be no return to the FOLFIRINOX regimen, and what’s next is up in the air.

Upon getting the news yesterday, my mental outlook largely reverted to how I felt I when first diagnosed November 6, when I wondered if I’d see spring. Irene had that same sense of being back where we started.

Now I’m pretty sure I’ll make spring, but beyond that, who knows. It is sobering.

It is surprising that a life filled with chemo for 3 of every 14 days and visits to the ER or hospital every few weeks can feel normal, but it can. Irene and I were, sort of, settled into it.

This sense of normalcy evaporated in minutes. I spent Friday partly in grief and partly distracting myself. I know that there will be better days, and I am grateful for however many more of them are left.


K. Jenkins


Mere words conveying such a powerful situation.

I am thinking about you my new friend.

Candice Schubert

I’m sorry Michael. I hope you do have better days and are able to do whatever it is you want with them.

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