Monday, August 1, 2011

Game Plan

Hey guys, Logan again.
We went up to Auckland today to meet our new Oncologist at Starship (his name escapes me at this time, I'll post it at a later date). It was a long drive, and an even longer day. To make things even more fun, as we were driving in on the motor way, we got a call to tell us that my Nana was in North Shore Hospital for unknown reasons. So we quickly dropped Charlotte off at the Ronald McDonald house near Auckland hospital, before rocketing across the harbor bridge to find out what was wrong with Nana. Thankfully it didn't appear to be anything serious, but we spent an hour or so with her chatting (which we had been planning to do anyway at her house), before shooting off to have lunch at a lovely place called the coffee bean. By this point it was time for the whole family to gather back at Ronald McDonald house to see if we could get a tour, which the lovely receptionist provided for us (they even had a Ronald sitting on a bench). Next it was off to Starship to have a look around before our appointment, and I have to say, their bottom floor is brilliant. For those who have never seen it, they have set it up like a forest floor, with floor panels depicting either leaves, grass or water. They had "log" benches and "trees" around the place. Even large 3D "clouds" in the sky, hanging above your head. After a short wait in a canteen lounge we got called by our oncologist Mark Winstanley (I remembered down here) to discuss my treatment. Basically he said that he has a new regime for me, made up of some drugs I've had before, some I've heard of, and some completely new ones (one is intrithecal(goes into my spine(they knock you out at starship))), that are used in relapse patients, that were on my original regime in Britain. This will continue on 3 week cycles (5 in, 16 out) till I'm in complete remission (he doesn't know how many cycles this will require), then they go for full body irradiation. Only after all this do they harvest Charlotte (Mark didn't know if the transplant team wanted stem-cells (gathered from the blood) or bone marrow (you know how they get that)) and prep me for transplant. Apparently they continue the chemo right up to the transplant, even if I'm in remission, to make sure I stay there. I'll have to have all the chemo up at starship, but that doesn't seem too bad, other then the fact that they only provide breakfast for mum (and after we fought so hard for them down here). According to Mark, every room has a PS3, large TV and a fold out bed for mum, other then that I know very little about the facilities. We head up tomorrow afternoon to get admitted for Wednesday chemo. But before the chemo starts I get to have a bone marrow biopsy, Yea boy, its going to be mean fun (sarcasm(not about the biopsy, but the fact that it'll be fun(because it wont be(but at least they will knock me out(apparently that's general practice at starship(which I think is great because I hate pain(well I guess everybody does at that(except the people who like pain(but they're just weird(but who am I to say who is weird and who isn't(I really like brackets)))))))))). Other then that we are just going to roll with this first week, possibly meet up with the transplant team at some point during the treatment. Visitors would be more then welcome by us. Except we cant guarantee that you will be welcomed by the staff, who are apparently trying to limit visitors because of the measles outbreak which would cause untold damage in a ward where many of the patients have little or no immune system.
Well I think that is most of what has been happening, although I may have missed something, But I'm sure mum, dad or Charlotte will fill in any gaps I've left.
Thanks for reading this reasonably long post, and the even longer one last time.
Till next time children. This is Logan signing off, saying Be good and stay healthy.

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