Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pinktober is coming

Not even October yet and we're awash in PINK.
Do I need to buy a 4 pack of Pink Komen Lint Rollers at B.J.'s? Not really. We've been going out of our way to avoid the pink stuff. Not that we don't want to give money to cancer research (HELLO) but there are BETTER places than Komen.
30% of women who have breast cancer, no matter what stage it’s initially caught will have their breast cancer metastasize but under 5% of the millions of dollars each year collected by Komen and other large charities actual go to Metastatic research.
Komen spends more money in a year to sue small charities who use the term, "For the Cure" than they give to Metastatic Breast Cancer Research. What's wrong with this picture!? That's disgusting and not right. It’s eye opening the things you find out about these big charities when you’re on the front lines of Stage 4 Breast Cancer.
If you're thinking of giving to a Breast Cancer charity this year please give to Metavivor.
Metavivor is non-profit run entirely by volunteers, many who themselves have Stage 4 breast cancer and so 100% of donations go to research.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Eyleen entered a Why I Deserve a Summer Vacation contest through Wyndham and I want everyone to get out there and rate her story so she can get into the finals that will be announced June 23. If she's a finalist I'll post the new address where everyone can go to vote for her!! Here's the link: Why I Deserve A Summer Vacation
Thanks for your help everyone!!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Just wanted to give everyone an update.
Eyleen goes in for a double mastectomy on Thursday, June 16 the day after school ends. Chris is coming the night before and being amazing by staying with me while we wait for her to get out of surgery.
Katie is coming the day of also and will be around for the two weeks of gross drains and such that I can’t handle. SERIOUSLY I can’t handle. We were watching “Being Chaz” last night and almost passed out when his girlfriend was measuring and pouring out his drains. Oh man I’m getting gross hot slobbers just thinking of it. THANK YOU KATIE!!!!
Lois & Mark will be here sometime at the beginning of July, which is very nice so someone will be with Eyleen throughout the summer so I don’t have to miss too much work. As soon as the drains come out she’s gonna have 4 weeks of radiation, 22 treatments. After that at the beginning of August we’ve rented a house on Tybee Island and plan to do nothing but lay around and RELAX finally for FIVE WHOLE LONG GORGEOUS DAYS.
That’s really about it. Things have been going very well. Eyleen’s starting to get hair back, I bet by the end of the year she’ll have a full head of hair about my length.
She has a doctor’s appointment today to get her started on the oral chemo drugs and such and then one more appointment with the surgeon before Thursday. We’re both starting to get that sick anxious feeling since nothing’s really happened in almost a month. It’ll be alright though.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Hey guys! It’s been a crazy few weeks since I last posted. With Eyleen’s last treatment they took out the Adriamycin chemo and with it decided not to give her the neulasta shot because Adriamycin is the one that drops your white blood count. Plus she was supposed to get a PET scan on March 23 and the neulasta could affect the PET. The whole weekend before the 23rd she wasn’t feeling well and it continued until she woke me up at 3:30 in the morning on the 23rd with a fever of 104.7. At first I thought the thermometer HAD to be broken so I ran to the CVS real quick and got a new one that immediately went back to 104.7 when I put it in her mouth. I got her in the car and called Dr. Marks on the way to the hospital to let him know I was taking her to the ER by our house. She was admitted later that morning with pneumonia and dangerously low white blood cells. A normal person’s WBC is 4.3 to 10.8. Eyleen’s was .3. She was in the hospital in a private room and we all had to wear masks and gloves in the room. They told her she’d be lucky if she’d get out on Saturday. Thursday night her WBC were still .3. Friday as I left from work she called me and told me that they were discharging her because her WBC went up to 1.3 and her pneumonia was almost all cleared up.
The hospital staff was VERY impressed with what a fast recovery she made. She works real well with medication. And is doing VERY well now, especially since she’s back at school. Having to rest AND being on Spring Break was NOT helping her because she couldn’t do anything and it was stressing me out because I’ve never seen anyone who just couldn’t RELAX. Haha

First let me preface this next thing by telling everyone something that alot of people didn’t know. We decided not to tell everyone except a few friends and our families because we wanted to see how things played out. Back in Jan. when Eyleen had her PET scan we found out that not only did she have the main tumor in her breast but she also had spots on her spine, her sternum, femur, hip and rib under her breast. It’s a scary thing to see and even scarier to deal with knowing that you’re stage 4.
Through all of this Eyleen never got down and continued and still does continue to kick cancer’s ass. But we didn’t want to let everyone know about the diagnosis when she was still fighting.
So anyways.
April 1 Eyleen went to Dr. Marks with her mom to find out what was going on. She called me around 415 or so and the first words out of her mouth were “It’s Gone.” I was so excited, “That’s great I thought now we can start focusing on the bone spots.” “No, it’s GONE in the bones.” She told me. “The bones are clear and the main tumor has shrunk by 99% overall.”
I don’t remember much after that. I remember running around my office telling everyone the most INSANE MIRACLE news I’ve ever gotten until Amber tearing up herself looked at me and demanded I get out of the office and go home with the biggest thing of flowers and cake and celebrate.
And that’s exactly what I did. I brought home the most gorgeous flowers and cupcakes from our favorite cupcake place and had an amazing weekend.
Yes, Eyleen’s cancer is gone from her bones.
She still has this 6th treatment then 3 more after that to get her to summer where she’ll get a right side mastectomy and then will receive radiation on the main tumor site. She’ll go on to Tamoxifen and an oral chemo and at the end of summer she will be NED (no evidence of disease). We’re praying for a LOOOOOOONNNNGGG long stay from NED. He can stay around as long as he likes, which will probably be for the next 50 years since it’s Eyleen and her crazy overachieving butt. :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Rockin' It Out

Eyleen is at Chemo right now and I want to first of all give MAD props to Mark, Lois and Shane for this being the first time I've had to take a day off work to take Eyleen to her visits. I love you guys so much for the help.
10 days ago was Eyleen's appointment with the doctor and to get her Xgeva shot after her 4th treatment. It was earlier than it usually is but at that time her tumor had shrunk another 5% overall and a 50% reduction after the 3rd treatment. Well today she had to see the doctor before her 5th treatment to go over the results of her MUGA heart test. In 10 days between that time her tumor shrunk another 1%. She's sitting at 96% reduction overall. It's so small now that the doctor had to press hard to find it. :)
On the MUGA front, her heart function is at borderline normal so they're taking the A out of her TAC treatment and they're giving her a medicine to help get her heart function back to normal.
The medicine will also help her water pill work better, which is good because the xgeva is kicking her butt and swelling of her feet and legs is crazy.
Next Friday she'll have another PET scan and then we'll get the results before 6th and hopefully final treatment. Keep your fingers, toes and everything else crossed folks. :)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Just Keep Swimming

Sorry for the overdueness of this post. It’s been a hard last month in the Schmavenport house.
The Monday before Eyleen’s 3rd treatment my grandma passed away. I went to Sanford to be with my family for the funeral and Eyleen did a round of chemo assisted by our friend, Shane as her chauffeur.
When I came back Eyleen had extreme pain in her back. It lasted the whole weekend and Monday I called the doctor to get her some pain pills. Monday night I went to CVS and they didn’t have anything. It was late in the day when I called the doctor so I thought it would be there Tuesday. WRONG. Tuesday went by with me calling CVS 484759 times and the doctor’s office just as much. Wednesday came around and I called the doctor who told me they sent over the prescription on Monday. Eyleen was in so much pain she was hunched over her desk at school and had to have help to her car. The doctor called CVS and chewed them out and the meds were ready by the time Eyleen was almost home. The back pain is gone now so that’s really good. Then last week on Wednesday Eyleen came screaming down the stairs shoving her foot in my face. She had magically over the last few days sprouted cankles. She was so bloated her feet were purple. Friday was her appointment but I called them on Thursday anyway. Friday came and the doctor took a look, told her she had about 6-8 lbs. in each leg and have her medicine to reduce the water retention.
ALSO he gave us the news that within two months and three treatments her tumor has shrunk 90%. He thinks after today’s 4th chemo in a few weeks it will be almost indetectable. Eyleen is a freaking ROCKSTAR!
You know who else is a rockstar!? Eyleen’s parents. They came down on Sunday and have been working around our house the whole week. Tearing up carpet and staining stairs, grouting, caulking, cleaning, cooking. They’ve done everything and I love them for it. I can’t even put into words how much this week has meant to not only me but of course Eyleen who loves having her parents around.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Round 2 I'm Tyson at his prime and this cancer is on the ropes

So after the success of round 1 Dr. Marks said to expect some reduction but not the reduction we had in round one. Little did he know, my immune system is apparently Tyson in his prime.  We shrunk it another 50% from round 1 for a total of drum roll please ... 80%.  More numbers to toss at you.. when I started this journey, the tumor measured 8 by 10 or a mass of 80 it covered pretty much the whole breast. I had a lymph node the size of a  ping pong ball and a scar on the side that measured 16cm. Yeah it was that bad. 

Now my tumor measures 3.5 by 4 or a mass of 14. The lymph is no longer detectable and the scar is no longer measurable. While I still need 6 total rounds, Dr. Marks now expects the tumor to be shrunk into nothing by the 4th treatment. 
Also, Christine has been fighting a cold for 3 weeks that I haven't gotten, why? Well apparently my blood counts are still in the range of a normal non chemo taking person.  Still can't eat a salad oh well.