So I met with the oncologist in Detroit at the Karmanos Cancer Institute last week. It went well — the visit was pretty straightforward, given that I am familiar with phase 1 trials and have a pretty good grasp of the kind of trials I’m pursuing (and why I’m pursuing them). I liked the oncologist, who is kind of a blend of my two oncologists at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. She’s an oncologist who works in phase 1 trials, but also specializes in gynecological oncology (most phase 1 trial oncologists are medical oncologists, not oncologists who specialize in a particular type of cancer). She told me the phase 1 team meets Tuesday to Thursday, and will discuss my case then. As long as I fulfil the criteria for the trial (which I did on first look, but sometimes things come up in review that can change that) and there is a spot for me, I should be in. Hopefully if there isn’t a spot for me in March, I can simply start in April. I can expect a call from Karmanos on Friday.
This last week has been heartwarming, to say the least. I am currently just shy of $32,000. I have seen friends, family, acquaintances, and strangers pull together to help me raise the money I need if I’m to pursue a clinical trial. I am slowly but surely making my way through the list of people who’ve donated to send out thank yous. With almost 600 donations, it will take awhile, but it is time I am more than happy to spend. If you donated and haven’t heard back from me, forgive me. I will eventually get there!
In case you missed it, my darling Catherine McCormick wrote a beautiful piece for shedoesthecity.com about our friendship and how to be a good friend to someone with cancer. Everyone should read it (and then go read Catherine’s other pieces on the site because she’s a kick-ass writer).
Please keep your fingers crossed that I get into the trial in Detroit. It’s funny — I’m feeling better now than I have in a really long time. Being off treatment for two months has helped my body recover a bit. I’m still not “normal” (I don’t know if I even remember what that feels like, or if I will ever feel that way again), but being only anemic instead of severely anemic really makes a difference in my energy levels. It is also nice not to have the weird constant leg pains that I had with weekly Taxol. But all that aside, I’m ready to get back to active treatment, rather than actively seeking treatment.
Finally, if you are so inclined, please share my fundraiser page. We’re getting closer to the goal, but there is still a ways to go: http://www.gofundme.com/6tl6so