Monday, December 17, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Christmas is only 8 days away! Two more days of teaching! I really want snow for Christmas. We will be traveling to the Midwest to visit friends and family.

Health wise, I have a touch of the flu but I have amazing recuperative abilities and will shake it off quick. I am now on an anti-seizure regimen of Lamictal and Keppra. This combo has made the spells I have (tingling of right side) almost disappear. They used to happen 1-3 times a week. Now it is down to one maybe every third week. I will go back to NIH for my next routine scan in early January 2013.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Hey, I am still here...

...just very busy. No news is good news.

October was busy with Halloween and birthday parties for the girls.  Raced in two cyclocross races, Hyattsville CX and DCCX, that were a lot of fun. Finished toward the back of the pack but did not crash!

Next MRI will be in late December; Merry Christmas.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Latest MRI Scan

September 28, 2012
I went to NIH for my quarterly scan on Friday. They quickly got to the point: the tumor appears to be stable again! Such a relief. I will go back in three months for another scan. That visit will be at Christmas time. Looking forward to great Christmas present!

Marcie and I had a couple hours free so we spent the beautiful afternoon at the National Zoo. So relaxing. Even ran into a high school classmate and her family at the zoo. Coming up on our 25 year reunion next year.  Marcie and I stopped for a meal at an Irish pub in Cleveland Park (a reward for me.) They had a very interesting pumpkin ale, like liquid pumpkin pie.

So what's next? Cyclocross! Registered for a CX race in Hyattsville next Sunday. Looking forward to more mud.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Super Spartan Race Results

The Super Spartan Race was so awesome! I had so much fun over 10+ miles in the rain and mud. 20+ obstacles and dozens of things to hop and climb over. I finished 443rd out of 1600 racers in 2 hours and 36 minutes. (23rd out of 124 males age 40-44). Can I assume that I finished first for all the racers with brain cancer?
 I had the biggest smile on my face throughout as I was reveling in pushing myself physically and mentally through the event. I loved that my family was on the course to cheer me on. I gave them mid-race muddy hugs after I came out of the mud crawl under barbed wire.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Race in nine days!

Next Sunday, August 26.  I will be doing my first Super Spartan Race.
Eight to nine miles of trail running with 20+ obstacles to conquer.
It will be rough, muddy, difficult and awesome. I can't wait! I have been working out consistently through the spring and summer. This is my last week of intense workouts before a pre-race rest week.
Tonight's workout was 3+ miles of running, a mess of burpees, push-ups, and some pull-ups, and carrying a filled, seven gallon jerry can down and up and down and up a hill. (I had to look it up: 7 gallons is about 58 pounds.) Ahroo!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

On the road again...actually now off the road again

This is more of a travel update than a cancer update.

We took a family trip. A very loooong family trip. A Griswold type family trip.
23 days, 5500 miles and 12 states.

We loaded up the the truckster (Toyota van) and headed west from the DC area to Yellowstone.
Stops included the jolly green giant in Blue Earth, MN, the Corn Palace and Wall Drug in South Dakota. We saw the Badlands, Mount Rushmore and Devil's Tower. We had a four night stay in Yellowstone and saw many, many animals, the geysers, and swam in some unpublicized but great hot spring fed rivers. We then dropped down to the Grand Tetons for a couple more great nights.

So many highlights:
float trip in a storm on the Snake River
alpine slide in Jackson
Notch Trail in the Badlands
Mount Rushmore at night with lightning in the background
old style oil lamp cave tour in Jewel Cave National Monument
horse back riding with the girls
sleeping in the tent for 13 straight nights, much of it in the mountain air

On the way back we saw good friends in Indiana and Michigan and visited family in Ohio and western New York.

Whew, it was a great trip but good to be home.

Why did we do this? These are some of the favorite places Marcie and I first visited together 18 years ago. We felt the need to share these places and our spirit of exploring with our children. Subliminally, I think we feel that although my tumor appears to stable, the clock is ticking very quietly but noticeably. If not now, when else can we make a trip like this?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Happy Fourth of July!

In a nut shell:
1) Happy Fourth of July!
2) Had an MRI and reading last week: No change, no growth!!! Awesome
3) It's HOT in DC but our power has stayed on!
4)The heat has gone to my head because Marcie and I have signed up for two races: Super Spartan Race in Leesburg, Virginia on August 26 and the Nation's Triathlon on September 9.

Regarding those races: I would like a shirt or bike jersey to promote the fight against brain cancer. anything out there that I can order?
Maybe I should create my own with a good quote:
"I have brain cancer; your excuse is invalid."
Any ideas?

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Happy Summer!

Wow, time flies! School is out and I get to spend my days with my beautiful daughters. (No teacher hours so I can now get a full night's sleep.) Still lots of running around. The girls are done with track but softball is in full swing. 

How am I doing you ask?

Very, very well. Physically, I am in good shape. I have drifted away from the P90X exercise program. It was very good for me to lose weight and gain muscle. Now, the weather is great outside so I have been trying to cycle and swim more. Swam a mile yesterday. Felt good and the conditioning I did in the early spring made it easy.

Medically, I am due for a quarterly MRI in a couple of weeks. I will visit my neurologist next week to address a different anti-seizure medicine. I have been on generic versions of Keppra. I have found over the last few months that I have been more agitated and my fuse is shorter and have periods of depression. I am looking for something without those side effects.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Great Run, Greater Cause!

I ran this great race last year. Huge crowd on a beautiful day, running down Pennsylvania Ave. to the capitol and back. It was a moving morning. Thousands were to raise money and awareness for brain tumors and brain cancer research and support.

I can't make it this year. It is my middle daughter's First Communion the same day. (I am in good shape and would have rocked the race.)  We will have many families coming in from all over to celebrate Amara's day.

Anyone want to run in my place?

The even supports Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure
and National Brain Tumor Society

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Spring Update 2012

Cut to the chase: MRI on April 19 shows stable tumor. Yipee! Bonus: My P90X fitness program is working. My weight is below 200 for the first time in years. It takes a lot of time and commitment but I am very pleased. As always, life is very busy. The girls are in the midst of school, track, softball, girl scouts, etc. Never a casual day at this house.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Yep, still alive and rocking P90X

The picture is from our trip to Namibia, riding quads in the dunes outside of Swakopmund.

My blog posting time is severely limited because of my new project: P90X. I wanted a new fitness program that I could do at home. I am 3 1/2 weeks in and am seeing some changes. Feeling stronger, fitter, and lighter (a little).

Mentally, it is a great break. Every day I dedicate at least an hour to physical fitness. I am as mentally refreshed as physically refreshed. I am eating a lot better, too. More fruits and veggies. No junk! Soda: no. Beer: yes.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy January!

It has been over three months since I stopped the Temodar regimen. I had been on the regimen for 24 months.

So after these three months, I had a check up MRI at NIH in Bethesda. It was a very quick report. No growth! I love, love, love when the meeting with the docs is so brief! They gave me the physical tests and they just smiled and said they will see us in another three months. So Marcie and I went and had a lovely late lunch. It was a really good day.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Home with great memories of Namibia!

We are back from Namibia for over a week now and still flying high on how awesome the trip was.

The trip was both a reward and a dream come true. I am ready to go back.

Quoting Marcie:
In the spirit of "living each moment to the fullest" celebrate the end of two years of surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy, Jim and I spent 10 days in Namibia, Africa. Here are some highlights from our amazing adventure!