A very quick update. Today was 3 weeks exactly since Elaine’s final chemo infusion, and we had an appointment with the terrific Dr. Buckley, who would give us an update. Last Friday she had a PET scan, which shows the progress of the tumors and provides a basis for evaluating the status of her cancer. Needless to say, we’ve been on pins and needles for the past few days, hoping the report would be good. We are not superstitious, but somehow we found ourselves not wanting to hope too much, for fear of jinxing the result.
Steve bounded into the room, and blurted out, “Your PET was “Perfect! Perfect!” He gave hugs all around, and then I asked him what that meant exactly. He said that there were no detectable signs of nodules or metastases in the images. While micro-tumors or cancerous cells could still be lurking in there, Elaine’s cancer is officially in clinical remission.
I thought Elaine was going to cry, and I thought FOR SURE that I was going to cry. Elaine has cheerfully gone through a relentlessly exhausting and debilitating set of surgeries and treatments for 7 months. Now she’ll have the chance to have life return to normal, to taste food again, to feel her fingertips again, to go through a day without needing to lie down. Little things do matter tremendously.
Steve commented that Elaine had responded amazingly strongly and well to the treatment. I can’t help but believe that her fitness, her diet, her attitude, all played a critical role. Perhaps the streamlined body and soul offer the least resistance and are the most resilient.
The monster may be sated, but only for the moment. For most women with ovarian, the cancer returns within 36 months, and then the options are fewer and the results are often dire. So as joyful as we are at the moment – and we really are joyful - we’re still very much focused on the very promising next generation of treatments that might give her much more of a chance.
Tonight we’ll celebrate a little, and luxuriate in the news. Tonight or tomorrow night, please drink a toast to Elaine’s health, because good wine is a deep part of her religion.
Thanks for going through this with us.
(Elaine and) Brian