In Eight Steps to Happiness Geshe-la says "'Self' and 'other' are relative terms, rather like 'this mountain' and 'that mountain ... 'This' and 'that' therefore depend upon our point of reference. This is also true of self and other. By climbing down the mountain of self, it is possible to ascend the mountain of other, and thereby cherish others as much as we presently cherish ourself."

Friday, July 24, 2009

I'm Going to Festival !

If everything continues to go well, I'll be at Summer Festival July 30- August 5. I can't believe it! I first seriously considered the possibility on Sunday, after I'd had some energy for a few days. After consulting with my oncologist on Wednesday, I booked a flight - the same flight that a handful of Seattle Sangha are on, so they'll be able to look after me. I couldn't do it alone. What are the chances at this late day of that itinerary still being available, and at a reasonable price too? This morning I got confirmation that I have a place to stay at a cottage north of Ulverston with some other Festival-goers. I see Dorje Shugden's hand in all of this - ordinary life does not work out like this.
Hope all of you who are at Festival this week enjoy the empowerment, the teachings and the retreat. Please take good notes : )

Finally, an Update: Doing Very Well

Hello! I'm back. Sorry for the long break from blogging. I've been living my life, trying to catch up with my life and resting from my life.
My doctors say I'm doing very well. Tuesday I saw my naturopath and Wednesday I saw my oncologist. Both think I'm doing really well. In fact, my oncologist thinks that if they did a CT scan today, it would be clear. Which means that because he didn't find anything in my physical exam and because of my low CA-125, I'm most likely in remission already. That tumor marker dropped again, to 11.2, which is great news.
I think these last 2 rounds of chemo are like insurance. He even suggested I could skip the 6th round, because I may have reached the maximum benefit already and the chemo has some detrimental effects. The actual CT scan is scheduled for early September, and when I see my oncologist to talk about post-chemo plans September 4th.
Yesterday and today I'm in the hospital for my regularly scheduled chemo - the beginning of round 5. I also have my usual view of the city and Elliott Bay, the port, freighters, ferries and pleasure boats. Rebecca stopped by to visit. I'm not sure how she found the time, because she's one of the few people who's "holding down the fort" while everyone else is at Summer Festival. (Fortunately she got to go to Spring Festival.)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Good News

My CA-125 (tumor marker) dropped again - to 14.7, which by some standards is considered within the normal range. This is very good news. The chemo is working. My oncologist wants to see it drop further, to below 10 or even to 0 (if he could, I'm sure he'd even drive it below 0). As I understand it, they'll want me to have the full 6 courses of chemo no matter what that marker does.
Thursday and Friday I got chemo in the hospital. It was just like the last time - I felt perfectly comfortable during the infusions but wiped out when I got home. I rested all weekend and will rest again after I finish typing this.