Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Hooray! Our First Blood Donors with their Rally Monkeys

Who knew that donating blood was a big thing for people.

Well, it's stressful in a sense because you start thinking maybe I won't be able to donate. Your heart starts to pound up in your throat just thinking of the words that the nurse may utter to you "Sorry, but you can't donate today, come again"

What the "F" is what I was thinking the first time, one year ago. The second time this last Saturday, I was like what the "F" not again! Now what...I just couldn't get past the long hallway and out of the interview room.

This time the doctor was not on call on Saturday to ok and release my records to prove that the tumor I had in my knee was not malignant. So, I again heard the words uttered to me......."Sorry, I hate to tell you but you can't donate today...but you can come back again.

So I was determined to give blood damn it. I will be here on Monday I told the nurse. She laughed with me. I think? And off I went with my head down but Surviving3under5 was very excited to donate blood. I was very happy for her. She was so happy, she had her thumb up and everything all giddy cause she was going to donate for the first time. Her boys would have been proud to see their momma donating blood with the Rally Monkey as her sidekick.

On Monday Weezy130,One Day at a Time, and myself went to City of Hope to give blood. One Day at a Time even stocked up on protiens to be ready to give blood. Weezy130 is O+ so she gave her blood in a record time of 6 min. She came out like a I waited for someone to tell me if I would be able to donate, One Day at a Time stressed out to find out if she would be able to donate too.

They called ODAT and she was out within seconds, she is having a hard time passing that hallway as well. Man, she said I can't donate. What! Come on now! ...she said her iron was low again so she needs to stock up some more.....just more protein and she can try on Saturday.

Gosh, I was thinking hell they are sending my ass home because Weezy130 had gone, ODAT came back and my ass was still waiting...nerve wracking I tell you.

"Wait, they called me already? You said I was in the bathroom." I ran up to the counter and told them I was back and anxious to know if I could donate.

The nurse takes me to back room, mind you it's the same room all the time. The one where I hear "Sorry, come again" -- aw man! .......but she said ok we got everything we needed from your doctor so let's take you vitals and iron count
ok I said ..........then I heard.....


I would of done the happy dance if I didn't have pain in my knee so I just motioned my arms in a happy circle in the air... I thought I would never sit in the chair across from the interviewing room. I was so happy and then I see Marco standing at the door way and gave him a high five "I can donate!" I told him it is the most wonderful feeling.

It's the feeling that you are helping someone you love or someone's loved one because remember they don't waste the blood. Other patients at City of Hope are also waiting for blood that is not used or that is donated by the donors. It's the most wonderful thing to know that you could help Marco or another patient.

Sitting in the waiting room in the Donor Room you hear a lot of different stories of people and why they are there. Some are there because a loved one or friend is in need of it ...some do it cause it makes them feel good to donate to someone who needs it and they don't even know who they are sometimes...some of their loved ones passed away and they are donating on their behalf and out of thankfulness that City of Hope donors helped them out in their time of need.

Just as adults need it the little ones do too. Platelets are needed too. Now that I can donate I can give platelets and someone can use them. Today while waiting after we gave blood, there was a woman donor who asked what type of blood we need and she said she was A+ and she said that her co-worker had a little one, 4 years old who needed platelets and he was in the hospital every other day and she was more than happy to get a call saying they needed her to go donate and she said she jumped in her car and drove to City of Hope to give her platelets for this little one. So we exchanged names and numbers so when I come to donate platelets I will donate it especially for the little fellow who needs it.

Special thanks to all who have and will be donating blood it means a lot to all of us and to many.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Rally Monkey's Blood Drive!!


I have the information everyone has been asking for. Question is are you ready to give blood?

I wanted to see if everyone wanted to meet tomorrow Saturday, April 25, 2009 early in the morning to donate.

We can make it an event, take our rally monkeys and take some pictures. I know it's last minute but this would be the only Saturday that maybe everyone has before his surgery.

If you can make it tomorrow let me know so I can see how many of us can be there tomorrow. We may have a wait because we would be walk-ins. But if we get there at 8am we may not wait to long.

Marco is A+ and he can use A-,O+,O- too. So if you know what type you are, we need you. All blood donated will be checked and those that match will be held for Marco's use if needed in the surgery. All other blood will not be thrown away it will be used for other patients that needed at City of Hope. It's all good!

If you can't make it tomorrow you can still donate till May 6th (Wednesday). Blood donations will be taken under Marco's name at City of Hope.

You can read the previous blog for information on donating blood and if you can or can not donate.

Please make an appointment by calling 626-824-9340 they are open Mon.- Sat. from 8am till 4pm. You can also do walk-in but you may have to wait. Please give yourself one hour (or more, without appointment) when you go to donate blood.

You need to go to the Security booth in the front of City of Hope and they will give you a parking pass and let you know where to park. We really appreciate everything everyone has done and appreciate you giving your blood. Again, please let me know if you can make it out there tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Blood donors

From the Wife:

We will be asking for a referral for blood donations......everyone has been asking about information. Weezy informed me of the City of Hope blood donation website so here is some information on it. I will let you know when we can start to go and donate. Thank you again to all of you.

from City of Hope website:
Please note that units of blood and platelets collected at City of Hope are used for City of Hope patients only. We do not transfer nor sell any blood products to other hospitals.

If you would like to donate, you must be at least 17 years of age (though donors age 15 and 16 may donate if they are a blood-related sibling or child of a patient and have parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds, and possess a government issued picture ID (e.g., a driver's license or passport). We also encourage you to have a healthy meal and avoid coffee or caffeine–containing drinks before donating.

Please note for plateletpheresis donors only: Do not take any ibuprofen, aspirin or aspirin-containing products 48 hours before your donation.

Patient-directed donations:

Directed donors must present the following information at the time of donation: the patient's name (as registered in the hospital), date of birth and/or medical record number.

A donor's blood type cannot be determined before donation. If the donor’s blood passes all tests, but is not the same blood type, it will automatically be released for use by other patients.

There is no credit system for directed units donated at local hospitals or any other collection agency.

You cannot donate blood if you have experienced:

-Cold or flu symptoms three days prior to donation or do not feel well on day of donation
-Taken antibiotics in the last 48 hours
-Major dental work (crown, root canal, gum surgery) in the past 24 hours
-Hepatitis after the age of 11 years
-A history of cancer (except basal cell skin or in situ cancers)
-Had a tattoo, ear or skin piercing (ear piercing done with a sterile piercing gun is OK), accidental needle stick or come in contact with someone else’s blood in the past 12 months
-Received a blood transfusion in the last 12 months
-Spent more than 72 consecutive hours in jail or prison in the past 12 months
-Traveled to a malaria risk area within the last 12 months
-Had malaria within the last three years
Spent a combined total of:
-three months or more in the United Kingdom from 1980 through 1996
-five years or more in Europe from 1980 to present
-six months or more associated with a military base in any of the following countries:
From 1980 through 1990: Belgium, the Netherlands or Germany
From 1980 through 1996: Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Italy or Greece
-Are or have been pregnant in the last six weeks
-Were treated for syphilis or gonorrhea in the past 12 months
-Used a needle to inject nonprescription drugs (including steroids)
-Are at risk for HIV exposure, the virus that causes AIDS

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Oh no, Not Again?!

Today was the day we would know what the Sarcoma Conference Team wanted to do with the tumor in Marco's lung. All agreed to proceed with the major surgery.

As we know, all good news comes with some bad.

In Dec.2008 when Marco was admitted in the hospital for pneumonia there was a dark bloody liquid taken out of his lungs. At this time the test results came back with no cancer cells. Doctor says those were just tests result but they can't say for sure it was cancer-free because that test is not 100% guarenteed. They are now concerned about the liquid that had formed in the lungs at the time. So with that said...

First: Due to Marco's previous surgery they are anticipating some scar tissue to be present in the area they are operating on.
They want to insert a telescope camera into the pleural cavity of the chest wall. (This is the space between your lungs that let your lungs inflate and disinflate, there is liquid in this space to let the lungs move smoothly).

If they are successful with the telescope they will be able to determine where the tumor is located and in what area in the chest. If the tumor is attached to the lung, diaphragm, chest wall or ribs, at this time they can determine whether to resect the tumor through a laparoscopy and no major surgery will be needed. He will be in the hospital of 3-5 days.

Second: If they are not able to insert the telescope into the pleural cavity they will have to do major surgery on Marco and remove four ribs, a piece of his chest wall and go in and remove the tumor. Will be in hospital 7 or more days.

If they try the first or the second procedure and the cancer is visible in the pleural cavity they will close him up and not perform the surgery.

Because this area is not operable. They will leave the tumor in there till..............

Chemo and or Radiation will be the treatment to try to eliminate the tumor.

Operation date is for May 11,2009 we will let you know what time later we don't have that yet.

Our whole world is being turned upside down........and there is not a damn thing I can do and it pisses me off! Life is so unfair and I can not express my anger enough ....not even on this blog! It is just not fair!

My heart breaks everytime I am talking with DLP to try to make her understand what is going on and what could happen.

All I can think of is how the hell did we even get here.......I shouldn't be talking to DLP about this now.
This is something that no parent wishes to be explaining to their children.

A lot of emotions going on in this house ..............but we believe that Marco will pull out of this one too. He has been doing well and amazing the doctors with his recovery and progress. I know it will continue.

I love you handsome.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Biggest Bubble in the World Just Burst

From the Wife:

Trying to hold back the anger is getting tuffer for me because it's not right that Marco has to fight this shit over and over again. All the damn battle scares he has now are not enough.
"GOD" what the f*#% was he/she thinking (if he/she does exsist) to put this whole "CANCER" shit out there and for what purpose. Makes no damn sense to me.
Well let me back off this "GOD" shit already.

One day after you get good news, you think, that their may be ,not so good news lingering some where, you cross your fingers not to hear the not to good news. Especially when you have two appointments one day after another.

Then when you do get the not so good news you just want to yell to the top of you lungs.


I wish I could record myself screaming this from the top of a freakin mountains!

I swear, I hate everything about this whole freakin diesease. I hate that it lurks as if in swap water and emerges like an alligator ambushing it's prey at the edge of the water hole.

You would think that with the good news of the tumor shrinking was good to last us awhile and we would hear the words you can have the robotic surgery with minimal recovery time.

I believe that is what is to be expected after hearing you can go to surgery now let's see when the surgeon wants to do the surgery. But appointment number two was no were near anything of good news, far from it.

Instead you come out saying WHAT THE HELL and YOUR FREAKIN KIDDING ME!

We have to wait till Friday morning to find out what the plan is to remove the freakin tumor. Dr. Granis wanted the Sarcoma Confrence Team on Thursday 4/16/09 to talk about what options they can come up with to remove this tumor.

Basically all of Marco's physician's will be called in to this confrence and bring his case to the Sarcoma Confrence Team table to discuss the better outcome for Marco without the major surgery.

Because if this tumor is not removed and it starts to react again it can kill him. Me lleva la chingada is what I was thinking.

Top three topics they are bringing to the table are as follows:

1. Chemo would continue to try to shrink it more if possible. With their power punch cocktail.
(Marco says " he is not looking forward to chemo again)

2. Radiation to the site where the tumor is at. To see if it could be shrunk in a different way.

3. Major Surgery having a huge cut from the back side to the side where the tumor is at,have four ribs and some of his chest wall removed and having the tumor with all cancer boarders removed around the area. Marco would be in pain with some recovery time.

So it comes down to the position of the tumor and what needs to be done so that Marco has less pain and try to avoid the major surgery to remove the tumor.

After reading some of the blog's on Sarcoma Alliance I sensed that people must feel some relief to express themselves ...... so I did.

Cancer War continues.......funny that yesterday we were walking through the halls at City of Hope when Marco pointed out a picture a child had drawn called Cancer War and Marco thought it was funny cause it had the Star Wars drawing ......but that is what it is as Marco says......a freakin cancer war in the body.

I will keep you posted.... I will not apologize for any of the above.....just to make sure we are all the same page we are no where near the end of this road yet. This blog is to express yourself right. So do it!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Say Cheese!!

That is the most honestly cheesy smile Moshura could give the camera and he has every reason to be cheezin'. Tumor has shrunk to half the size per the Wife's text message from City of Hope. Details! Surgery?! Chemo?!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Spring has Sprung!

I would love to see a group shot of everyone wearing these flower power crowns from last Easter! Look how happy Machín looks!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Post-Chemo Update

It's been over a week since your last chemo and we're all wondering how it's going for you. Don't eat too many chocolate Easter eggs! Or rrrrriiibs....