Sandy Beardsley
Living with a Brain Tumor

December 2005
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Long Nights
Filed under: General
Posted by: Dan @ 2:15 pm

Christmas Eve…

This time of year with short days and long nights, coupled with the emotional highs and lows of the holiday season is usually difficult for us and maybe most people. This year, of course, that has been magnified for us. Its been a tough two weeks since my last post.
I have been in quite a bit of pain from the surgery on my leg, but have been slowly getting better. I got back to work and ditched the crutches after just a couple days. But I won’t be skiing for awhile (and yes, it’s my fault that the snow gods have stopped the snow here again like last winter because they don’t want me to suffer hearing friend’s powder stories). Walking and climbing stairs is painful, but it’s a pain I can handle because I know its going to fade. But the pain in my heart is another matter…
The 2nd round of chemo hit Sandy harder than the first. It really wiped her out and she had some days of nausea after the five day round ended. But she still feels fortunate that she isn’t on a typical chemo drug that really makes you feel deathly ill (though sometimes she wishes she did feel sicker from it so she would feel like the drug is doing something to stop the tumor). So that added on to the emotion of having our son home from college - we haven’t seen him in a year - has made for some tough days recently. Besides my own worries about Sandy, it truly breaks my heart to see her having to deal with all this. It isn’t right that cancer has been inflicted on one of the sweetest and most compassionate and loving women to walk the face of this earth.
But everyday we try to count our blessings - and they are many. I like to think that they are even more numerous than all the winter birds at our feeder out in the snow-covered yard - including the prophetic Mourning Dove I saw there today. Counting birds and blessings… that is what keeps us going through this season of long nights.

So here’s to shorter nights and longer days… We wish everyone a Happy Holiday Season and Best Wishes for a Wonderful New Year.

1 comment
Even Days in the Hospital Can Be…
Filed under: General
Posted by: Dan @ 2:42 pm

Good Days

Again, a long break in the blog here. We’ve just been busy with the stuff of life I guess.
Sandy had a great first week getting back to teaching after Thanksgiving. It wore her out and also energized her to be with all the kids and her co-workers again. She then, of course, caught a nasty cold but kept working. She has been tired but feeling overall a bit stronger. Her head is still painful around the surgery site, but we are so blessed she has been feeling as good as she has.
This past week has been one of a bit too much time in the hospital… again. This time it was my turn. On Wednesday I had surgery to remove all the hardware (metal plate and 5 screws) from my leg. [In case you don’t know my story… 14 months ago I was commuting to work on my bicycle and got hit by a truck. The worst of my injuries were a broken/dislocated shoulder and the top of my tibia broken off right below the knee.] All that hardware has been extremely painful for awhile now, especially in this cold weather, so Sandy and I decided I should get it all taken out now while she’s feeling good and could take care of me. So it was just a day surgery - they knocked me out, took it out and kicked me out.The surgeon also did an orthoscopy on my knee while he was in there.
Sandy drove me home, her first time driving since early October. That night and into the next morning the surgery site was bleeding pretty good so Sandy drove me back down to the hospital and my surgeon checked it out. The bleeding was normal he said and also the swelling and fluid in the knee was normal, though real painful. It’s still quite painful and I can’t bend my knee, but I’m getting around on crutches outside and a cane around the house. I won’t be able to cross-country ski for a few weeks, but I’m glad that hardware is out of me. I’m going to make a small windchime out of the metal plate and screws.
Yesterday we went back down to the hospital (3rd day in a row) for Sandy’s blood test and appointment with her oncologist. Her blood test results have been very good - no drop in white blood cell counts, liver function good, etc. So they are increasing the dose of the chemo drug Temodar. She begins the next round (pills at night for 5 days) tonight. Hopefully she won’t suffer any nausea or other side-effects.
So after that appointment, Sandy drove me over to the other hospital in town for an eye exam I had scheduled months ago. The opthamologist is keeping a close watch on my vision for some issues that came up since I got hit by the truck. Luckily, all was well.
So a big week in the halls of the medical world… but we’re both happy we are here and able to make those journeys. And I’m most happy that Sandy is healthy and strong enough to take care of me. So here we are again… switching roles… care and care alike…
Take care,