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As January comes to a close there’s not much new to report on the health front.  Perhaps that’s good news.  On January 15th, I went back to my oncologist for blood work and a consultation.  Everything appears good, even though my cramps and muscle spasms come and go with more frequency.  I blame part of this on the out-of-the-ordinary cold weather we’ve had here in Memphis (and everywhere else it seems), and my doctor concurred.  Asking me if I am “tolerating” the medicine (Gleevec) has become a routine question.  I think what he wants to really say is – As long as your liver is not in failure and you haven’t gone into a coma, then everything is fine.

My doctor wants me to have another CT scan on March 19th.  If the tumors are still in my right lung, we may decide to “zap” them with a procedure similar to the needle biopsy I had back in August.  My hope is that the tumors continue to get smaller.  Right now, they are very tiny.

So, I’ll continue to tolerate my medicine.

– – –

On Monday, January 27th, I become an official employee of the medium-sized manufacturing company in Bartlett, Tennessee that I’ve been on temp assignment with since mid-October.  I will be the human resources manager for the company.  Work has been “okay,” and I continue to learn new skills in the HR area and re-learn the subtleties of corporate life.  I think of this position as another opportunity to grow as a person and learn skills (and gain experience) that I can take anywhere in the future.

I still very much feel like an outsider at this company.  (I’ve decided not to name them for personal and professional reasons.) I think part of the reason is that no one there knows anything about my cancer.  And I want to keep it that way.  This may present a problem once March 19th rolls around, but I’ll tackle that issue once we know more from the doctors.

– – –

On the home front all is well.  Emily went back to school yesterday (January 25th).  It is very cold at the University of Maryland right now (again, as it is in most places this winter), and Emily has another challenging semester ahead of her. She seems to be adjusting to college life – albeit grudgingly – and her health continues to improve.  Vicki and I remarked at the airport yesterday how “grown up” Emily now looks.

 Zach continues to do an outstanding job at his academic competitions, which occur almost every weekend.  Yesterday, his team placed 2nd in a tournament hosted at a local high school, and Zach was honored for answering the most correct questions out of all the individual competitors during the morning session.

Finally, this Tuesday (January 28th), both Zach and Alisa (Vicki’s sister) celebrate birthdays.  It’s pretty cool to have two family members with the same birth date.  In fact, Zach’s best friend, Deepak, also has a January 28th birthday.

The journey continues…….

Another gratuitous picture of Nix.