Sunday, November 21, 2010

Thankful For Much

I spent some of the morning surfing the Web for more information about Vidaza, a brand name for the drug azacitidine. As you know, Dori is receiving it in six weeklong rounds, with Round Three set for the Monday after Thanksgiving.

I'm learning more than I probably want to know, including clinical effects and personal stories on message boards. The drug is very expensive, which we already knew, and made by Celgene, a company in the Boston area. Celgene has seen its sales soar as more providers are recommending it. Some governments like the U.K. and Australia agree the drug is effective but won't include in their national plans because of cost. You can buy Vidaza online in Canada, too, it appears. 100mg costs about $1,100 across the border.

Here's what you and I know about Vidaza. Dori is improving, and our kids still have their Mom. Dori continues to wear her "Hans Lives Here" black night shirt with pink lettering to bed every night, investing in faith and hope he will stay on task. I pray nightly that Hans keeps up the good work and for Vidaza to continue doing its mysterious thing.

Vidaza is being administered outpatient to Dori, which is much less expensive than an in-hospital stay. About every few days, I ponder what another transplant would have meant to my family. I'm grateful, as you can imagine, we're not camped out at the hospital. That's how I feel about Vidaza.

Last week, I looked at Dori midway through Kathryn's first basketball game and saw that same thankfulness. Kathryn's team was down 12 points, and we could have cared less. Kathryn was playing well and Dori was there, enjoying it all. Just smiles.

We will celebrate Thanksgiving with Dori's family this week. Her Mom and her sister's family will arrive in a few days. Dori is planning the menu, and I'll smoke a turkey or two. The kids will play with their two cousins, and their two dogs will join Pepper in a packed house. I'm quite pumped. This will be a great holiday for Dori and the kids. Ten years ago, I might have been bracing myself. Not these days. Bring it on.

I'm planning to run the Boulevard Bolt, a five-miler on Thanksgiving morning. I ran six last Sunday, and three and five milers during the week. I ran four this morning, slow at first and brisk at the end. My weekly 15-mile regimen the last month is probably enough to allow me to run an OK pace, though I'll probably look for a friend or two and just run comfortably with them. I don't have anything to prove with this run.

Nearly 8,000 people have already entered the Bolt. Proceeds feed and help the homeless. It seems like more are homeless this year, from all the people we see standing at intersections selling $1 newspapers. I love the Bolt because it's a great cause and great way to start my favorite holiday, and I see so many friends from over the years.

I hope you all have similar plans. Happy Thanksgiving!

By the way, check out the updated Kanzius Cancer Research Foundation website. Lots of good news there on a better looking site!

Kanzius Cancer Research Foundation Presentation from PAPA Advertising on Vimeo.


Ann said...

I'm so thankful for you both. Enjoy the holiday and have extra helpings of everything.

PJ said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your wonderful family!