Don Bowen Update: 2008-04-12

I know what you’re saying, “Slacker.” Because several  of you have actually said it 🙂 Well, I confess I just wasn’t feeling up to it. Sadly, I wanted to write, I just didn’t have it in me. Actually my better excuse is that nothing all that interesting was happening, but I at least have a few days to pick from now.

It was bound to happen. Live with five women long enough and you get on your own 28 day cycle. 🙂 Five days of temodar, 23 days of recovery. I won’t say my cycle is worse (hey, I’m not stupid!), but it isn’t fun. However, since I’ll probably be on it for quite a while I’m trying to get comfortable with it. It beats the alternative.

Wednesday I was done with my temodar, but not done with the nausea it created. I keep forcing myself to eat, but it can be hard. All my old staples make me sick just thinking about them. Fortunately fruit doesn’t, so I eat apples and oranges. When I get to heaven I’m heading right for the Garden of Eden. If it’s this good here, can you imagine how good it will be there?

I was supposed to sing at church on Wednesday night and though I wasn’t feeling great I finally made the call around 2pm to do it. I’m so glad I did. It was great to be there, be around friends and to sing to the Lord.

“Sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth. Sing to the LORD, praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples.” (Psalm 96:1-3)

I have pursued so many things in my life that I’m not gifted at and maybe not even that good at. I was given the gift of singing by God – no, I’m not saying I’m a gifted singer – and waited far to long to pursue using that gift. One of many things I’d do differently if I got the chance. If you have ever felt a small voice telling you to use a talent you may not be quite sure about, go for it. It may be God wanting to grant a desire of your heart. He did that for me, but I was deaf to it for way too many years.

The headaches and eye pain were pretty consistent from Wednesday night through Friday night. As with so much I’m going through it is just hard to describe and it changes fairly often. Most often the pain is in the back right where the scar is and where the radiation was focused. Sometimes it can be in the right front and occasionally in the front and back on the left. Recently the pain started spiking for fractions of a second and I don’t care for that 🙂 Ibuprofen can help a bit as can pain pills, but I try to avoid both if I can.

I really wanted to go to soaking prayer on Thursday, if nothing else to pray for others, but just didn’t feel up to it.

Friday morning I met with Dr. Geoffroy for the first time in quite a while. He said he had no update from Duke but we know the pharmacy was updated, so I’m not sure what happened. I described my head pain and wanted to know if anything could come back this quickly, having shown no signs only two weeks ago and he said no. He has heard of something developing in one month, but confirmed again that the thing to monitor is my vision. My vision isn’t better, but it hasn’t gotten worse, so that’s very good.

Speaking of vision, I wanted to mention that if you are ever surprised I don’t acknowledge you, it very likely I’m not recognizing you because of my vision. This is especially true if either of us is moving. It was a cruel trick for a guy who was already incredibly bad with names.

Because of the cost of the drugs I’m on, especially things like temodar, UnitedHealthcare wants me to get those drugs from a specialty pharmacy under contract to them. When I called I found out this means mail order drugs. I immediately felt even more nauseous. I don’t have a choice unless I want to pay for these myself, which I clearly can’t. I’m sure getting meds via the mail will work fine, but it made me uncomfortable. See how petty I can be?

Duke wants me to visit again on June 3, so I’m trying to figure out how to go and who to go with. It will probably be me and Eileen, but Mike has offered. I’ll try to move the meeting to Monday the 2nd and may even fly out of Chicago to avoid the scheduling nightmare between here and there. Depending on cost, I may even pay instead of using my points. Then again, maybe I shouldn’t fly American!

My dad found out this week that he does have prostate cancer. He and my mom are working through questions and trying to decide on surgery or treatment. I can’t blame dad for not wanting to join the prostate club. Those gowns are just pathetic 🙂 My brother and I also found out for the first time that our grandfather had two bouts with prostate cancer, but he lived to 96. I’m only asking God for another 40 years, which is threatening enough to Eileen. Please continue to pray.

Today may be a Lord of the Rings marathon. The extent to which Wendy will go to avoid playing cards against me is amazing.

I’m so thankful for family and friends like you. I don’t know how I would make it from one day to the next without you and your faithful prayers. God is using you to sustain me and I will forever be indebted. I pray that it will change you forever to the good, just as it has me.

I need a miracle, God specializes in them, pray BIG!

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5 Responses to “Don Bowen Update: 2008-04-12”

  1. Eric & Caren Hoehn Says:

    This post is absolutely classic Mr. Bowen. Have you tried Midol or Pamprin instead of Ibuprofin? Oooh…nausea…uh oh…perhaps you should get one of those plus and minus kits instead? I love reading your blog daily but honestly, after this post, I do hope you take more days off (pain free of course) so I can get such wonderful laughs. “I look forward to your next syllable with great anticipation” you slacker. Thank you thank you thank you.

  2. Pat Patterson Says:

    Hi Don – sorry to hear about your dad, too. Send him our love.

    The Pattersons

  3. angela seymour Says:

    for a recently diagnosed prostate cancer, I highly recommend Dr. Mani Menon at the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI. We live in FL, and my husband was diagnosed in Oct. 2007, had surgery in Detroit 12-11-07, and no signs of the cancer now. He had a very aggressive prostate cancer – a stage 3, and a 3+4=7 on the gleason scale. We were very nervous about the idea of going out of state for treatment, but we couldn’t be happier with the experience. You can do a google search for Henry Ford Hospital website, and Dr. Menon, or call toll free at 888-881-1117 or email aellerb1@hfhs.org (Arleeta). She will take you through the simple steps to get information.

    Dr. Menon does a laproscopic, robotic assisted surgery. He pioneered this surgery and has done more of them than anyone. It is far less trauma than any other prostate surgery. My husband was in the hospital less than 24 hr.s. call me 904/704-9726 if you want to talk

  4. Angie Says:

    HI Don. You may not remember me, but I met you at church a couple months ago. I introduced myself and told you my husband is also battling a GBM. He was diagnosed nearly 11 years ago, with an AA III, that evolved last year. Anyway, I got an email about you today and saw you ALSO had a blog. Yeah, now I can keep up with you.

    We were very blessed as members of the congregation by your singing on Wednesday, as with every time you sing.

    My husband tolerated Temodar quite well. We just had to change regimen’s as the latest MRI showed some growth. It has been a year and we feel blessed for that great year. He also sees Dr. Geoffroy and he is now taking Avastin and CPT-11. The Avastin is not covered by Cat/United Healthcare, unfortunately, but since they are trying to get this approved for use with brain tumors, the drug company is offering it to us at no charge for now. Hey, what can I say, I didn’t even know to pray about that one, but God took care of that need.

    I am sorry about your dad. 11 years ago when Brian was diagnosed, his Dad was battling melanoma (and doing fine now) and his sister-in-law was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was strange.

    Anyway, glad to read up on your progress. I will add you to my daily blog reads. As a blogger, I now have A LOT OF THEM!

    KEEP BELIEVING

  5. Bayrak Says:

    do you know any information about this subject in other languages?

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