Husband Reporter back again. We hope the holidays have been lovely and that the close of 2015 finds you pleased as punch (and/or Judy) with the year past and excited about the year ahead.
Today was the last day of radiation. Karyn has gone through ten sessions (two weeks). Despite being a third as many treatments as she had the first go-around in 2012, they carried two-thirds the radiation dosage. That’s a lot of radiation power in a short period and, if you’re thinking it sounds like a whallopin’-good-time-of-a-way to spend your next Holiday break, let me dissuade you from setting up those appointments.
While Karyn has exhibited exactly the sort of tenacity you’ve come to know, love and even expect, zapping your brain with radiation on purpose is no walk in the park. Increasing fatigue and persistent headaches have been punctuated with migraines. Dr. Santa Claus also brought a seizure on Christmas Eve (that was not on anyone’s wish list). Karyn’s speech has gotten worse* and, while we were told to expect that, it doesn’t make it any easier or less frustrating.
Along with a significant increase in napping, Karyn’s ability to deal with noise and activity has decreased*. Again, that’s not surprising, but keeping the house quiet and calm is a challenge when kids are off from school and have access to Christmas cookies. (Actually, they’ve been really amazing through all of this.)
Radiation is the gift that keeps on giving, so it will take about three weeks before Karyn feels significantly better. They’ll do another MRI in about a month to see how well the treatments have worked. Given past performance, we expect the tumor to have its tail tucked between its legs, feeling like it picked a fight with the wrong brain.
We couldn’t have gotten through the last few weeks without the help, love and support of some awfully special people. I’d name them here but: A) They know who they are and how we feel about them; and B) Like vigilante superheroes and bass players, they aren’t the type to crave the spotlight. To them, we say “thank you” and “we love you” until both get downright annoying.
Here’s to a great 2016!
* – These should be temporary effects of radiation.