Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Hey all. I am terribly sorry it has been so long since my last posting. Having Kenny home takes a lot of my time. All of my spare time has been devoted to sleeping and staring at the television trying to def-rag. We're still doing IV meds, but the frequency at which they are being administered is beginning to slow. He is getting better every day. Since his first drink of water on the 14th, he has been trying and succeeding at eating all kinds of things. Lettuce and dressing (Ken's PLAIN salad), milkshakes, even an ounce or so of fillet mignon that his brother brought him. He is really diggin' the Andes mints his mom brought over a few days ago. The best part is that it is all staying down. We have even let up a bit on his tube feedings.

Now that he is a little better, I actually got to go out with my girlfriends for a few hours Saturday night. It was nice to just get away and get a change of scenery. Not to mention conversation that was void of any medical lingo.

My next step is to get Ken up and around. He went out to the shop yesterday to do a few things, but was only able to stay out there for a half hour or so. He is still very weak.

Other than that, there is not much going on. We have more family coming in this weekend and Ken's sister, Laura, is here now. So there are lots of people around to help him get back on his feet.

Thanks so much for checking on him and I will try to post again soon. Love to you all. Inga

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hello all! Things have been quiet around here for the past couple of days. Very little throwing up and a lot of sleeping. Good combo if you ask me.

We had a visit with Ken's oncologist on Tuesday. Nothing exciting. Checked his throat, asked how things were going at home, took blood, etc. Ken was hoping to learn something new, but that wasn't the purpose of this visit. The follow-up tests, to determine the benefits of the chemo and radiation, will come the first week of March. We're expecting a CT scan and bone scans.

The lady from the physical therapy department of the home health division came out to evaluate how well Ken was getting around. When he "popped" out of bed, she quickly realized her services were no longer needed! Mark that one off of the list.

I am hoping this week will see a lot of healing for Ken's esophagus. He seems to do better each day. He ate a few things today, and it has all stayed down. So, I hope to see a lot more of that in the coming days. Once we get a few pounds on him, he'll be able to chuck that feeding tube. That's one of our goals. Fatten him up!!! Well, fatter than he currently is. A fat Kenny Grman-yeah right.

Talk to you all soon. I love you all. Inga

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Hello all,

Home is proving to be a welcome change from the hospital. Ken has had a few spells of throwing up, but this is likely because he stopped one of his nausea meds, due to its adverse side effect, making him feel like he is crawling out of his skin. The challenge to replacing it is the need for medication that is available in liquid or IV form. Most of them only come in pill form. But we are working on it.

Rest comes easier for me, knowing I don't have to get up early and go to the hospital. We picked up a remote doorbell that Ken keeps with him, and it rings in the bedroom when he needs something. All he has to do is push a button. It has worked like a charm.

To those of you who have tried calling the house, and gotten no answer, I have turned off the phones. After seven weeks of nothing but interrupted sleep, (life at the hospital), we're trying to get back on a more normal schedule. I'll try to return all of your calls, very soon.

Thank you all, for thinking of us and for checking in. I'll write again, soon.


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Well, home is so nice. A lot of work but so much better than being at the hospital. Everyone is concerned about how I am doing and I have come to equate this home health stuff to just another one of Kenny's projects. Any time he starts a new project he dives in full force and doesn't slow until it's finished. I am tired, but no more than any other time I have been by his side when he has decided to do something. If I wasn't going to the hospital three times a day, it would be the hardware store three or four or TWENTY times a day! Granted, it is not over yet, but I feel very fortunate so far.

Ken has been sleeping, mostly. We've only had one vomiting session, since he's been home, so that's good. He goes out once a day for radiation, but this ends, at the end of this week. It's too bad that it's so cold.

Ansel has not left the foot of Ken's bed. Every time I look over, Ansel is sleeping, and always touching Ken in some way. Ken kicked him a little last night while he was sleeping, and his leg actually landed on top of Ansel's head! Ansel griped a little, but didn't run off. I was surprised. He just moved his head and laid it back on Ken's ankle and went back to sleep. Such a good boy:)

Check in with you all soon. Love to all. Inga

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Hey all,

Sorry it has been a few days since my last posting, but so much has been happening, I've just been too busy. Ken came home yesterday (Monday) and we are settling in. Home health nurses, feeding tubes, and IVs. We're still trying to find our groove, but we're getting there. I am happy to report that Ken has not thrown up since we've been home, so YEAH!!

Ken is very ambitious about trying to eat. He had some Rice Krispies today, and it stayed down!! I couldn't believe it. He also tried some chicken noodle soup, but the flavor was off. He enjoyed a popsicle this evening. He just wants to quit the drugs and have a big steak and tell those tumors how it's gonna be. I told him he could quit any drugs that he wanted to quit, except the one that will keep the steak down. We wouldn't want to waste the steak he's been so looking forward to.

All this snow has been a nightmare. Today, on the way to radiation, I locked us out of the truck with the engine running! Poor Ken hates to be cold and I made him stand out in blowing snow with thirty mile an hour winds while I scrambled to get the spare key. I was so mad at myself. The hardest part about all this is trying not to beat myself up for being SO STUPID!!!!! But tomorrow is another day and it WON'T HAPPEN AGAIN.

Ansel was so great when we came home last night. Ken sat on the bed, and not a minute later Ansel jumped up on the bed and put his front paws on Ken's thigh, and laid down and just purred! Such a sweet boy!
(It was a much better meeting than the one when I brought him up to the hospital.) Last night is also the first night that Ansel didn't sleep with me; he spent most of the night at the foot of Ken's hospital bed. That cat came into our life at the perfect time. The whole family is just so in love with the little fur ball. He provides such comfort to us all.

Well, it's getting late, and I have meds yet to give, so we'll talk again in the next couple of days. Thanks, and love to you all. I hope all is well with everyone out there. Be comforted that all is well here.


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Good news all-chemo is over!!! Now all we have is radiation until Friday. A week from now this will all be but a memory. Ken will be home doing some real healing. Sleeping soundly for a change. And be coming out of this putrid hole of poison and vomit and back into the land of sunshine and lollypops.

We are preparing now for his return and he is really looking forward to his home that he loves so much. Mike brought him a STACK of Lone Ranger and John Wayne and others. Thanks Michael, really appreciate it. Really. It's all I could ever ask for.......Well, at least Ken will enjoy them. Thank goodness we have more than one TV.

Ken has been away from his home for a long time and I ask sincerely for your patience in his want for visitors.
He has a lot of healing yet to do and I don't know when he'll be up to socializing. Please remember,too what a social butterfly he is (not) even when he is healthy. All will come in due course; unfortunately it takes a lot of time.

I love you all. Thanks for checking in. -Inga

Friday, February 5, 2010

Hello everyone. I know you all wait for good news but tonight I don't have much. My poor Tinny was throwing up today and managed to give himself a hernia. He was in a lot of pain until it receded. They took him down for an ultrasound and confirmed it. The surgeon came it to talk to us and we all concluded that surgery at this point would be too hard on him. It takes about two weeks to heal from such a surgery and with all is vomiting, he would be in a lot of pain for quite awhile. They say it is serious but not emergent. So we'll just wait and see if it happens again.

Brother Mike is here, and sister Laura is heading down. They're still talking about a Monday discharge. We'll see.

There is plenty of room for celebration, however. Tonight they hung his last bag of chemo. It will run until tomorrow and then IT'S DONE!! Radiation until Friday and then IT'S DONE!! Then his poor throat will begin to heal and he can start thinking about eating again.

When I left tonight he was sleeping soundly. I hope he does for the rest of the night. My Kara is on, so he certainly has his greatest chance possible. That makes me sleep better. Love you all. We'll talk again soon.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Hey all!! Today's update begins with Ken's "new and improved" feeding tube. On his fifth and hopefully final trip down to radiology, he received a REAL G-J tube, feeding tube. And finally the story comes out why his last tube was such a monkey-rig. Apparently it was explained to Ken but in his fuzzy condition, he must have forgotten. The reason they didn't do before what they did today was because he wasn't healed enough, inside, from the original "installation". So now all the extensions and add-ons have vanished and he has a bright shiny simple tube that should work just fine. I certainly hope so because I really need that thing to work when he is sent home.

Day two of chemo.....throwing up a rainbow of things. Poor guy. I think his favorite nurse, "my Kara" is on tomorrow. I have asked the nurse manager to assign her to Ken, but I don't know if that's possible. It sure would be great, though. I know I sleep better when Kara is Ken's night nurse, because I know she helps Ken to sleep easier.

Well, I think he looks really cute bald, and he seems to be taking to losing his hair quite well. I am running out of time on getting the house ready for his arrival, so I am going to cut it short tonight and get to work in other areas. So goodnight to you all and I hope all is well out there. I love you all, Inga

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Hello everyone, sorry it has been a few days since my last posting. My computer was doing what computers do best-acting up. But we're back on track for tonight at least.

Well let's see... Since we last chatted, Ken has been moved, put on chemo, and finally gone bald. Looks like he beat his OLDER brother Mike who we thought had quite a head start. We found he has a rather nicely shaped head and his worries about his "big ears" were completely misguided. I did see a childhood photo of Ken recently and I can see where his big ear complex comes from, but I tried to put his mind at ease. Don't get me wrong, that kid had some ears, now, but I think he grew into them very well.

The chemo has begun, and will run until Saturday. His radiation countdown is now at eight more treatments.
His throwing up has slowed to about once a day, although he did puke a new color yesterday. Not that you
want to know that, but there is not a lot going on. They may send him home after the chemo is over, but who really knows for sure. If we have learned anything from this experience, it is that no one really knows anything for sure.

Thanks again for all the well wishes. They are still coming in every day and every day we appreciate them. Love to all. Good night. Inga