Posted by: Teri Simon | 2012/08/15

Knocked Down (for a moment), But Back Up Again in Fight Mode

My friends, today I had my CT scans to see how the Taxotere has been doing.  I went into the day with a bit of anxiety (normal for all of us who deal with this crazy cancer life), hopes that things were going to look good because I’ve been feeling so good lately, all of your good wishes and prayers, and my brother at my side (the primo necessary component here).  Alas, the scans weren’t, well, they weren’t great.  They showed that my lung situation is actually pretty good– tumors are stable and there’s lots more “air space” in my right lung, but that’s likely from the catheter being drained three times a week, and not from the Taxotere.

Because the rest of the story, Paul Harvey, well, it kinda sucked.  Loudly.  Seems the metastases in my liver have grown in an exponential way.  BIG, I tell you, BIG.  Scary big.  Stop me in my tracks, make my blood run cold in my veins, and cause me to burst into tears scary big.  Like I said, it was really good thing my brother was with me.  My brain went on holiday, and he said to me, “Is it OK if I ask all the questions?” and I said, “You better because I’ve just lost my brain.”  So he did.  And Leora explained that the liver metastases were concerning and evidence that the Taxotere was a big fail, and we needed to change chemo and do so pretty quickly.  She offered a couple of options, one of them being a drug called Navelbine, and suggested we go home and think about it and talk to her tomorrow.  But there I was, with the IV still in my arm from the CT scan and the labs and ready for chemo, and my brother said, “Well, I know my sister, and I know she wants to fight right now.”  And he was right, so Leora went and checked with my insurance company, who said “Yes, go right ahead,” and I went upstairs to infusion and got my first dose of Navelbine (also known as Vinorelbine, so my brother and I are calling it Vanilla Bean).

I went into this day with so much hope because I have been feeling so good lately, and my quality of life is so much back to where I want it to be, that honestly, when Leora showed me the mess in my liver, it felt just like being diagnosed all over again.  And I must emphasize to you that while I’m blogging right now, hours after the event, when I’m back in fighting mode and back to my optimistic self, like I explained a few weeks ago in my blog, when that news came down, so did I.  Hard.  My heart stopped, my brain stopped, my breathing stopped.  All I could think of was that I was going to die.  Like any second now. A week from next Tuesday, maybe.  And how could this be?  And please, God, no!  And again?  A chemo is a fail again?  Will nothing work? I probably snotted all over my brother’s shirt.  I used up a box of tissues.  I marveled at just how many setbacks one human being could possibly be subjected to.  See?  I’m human!  It’s hard for me when the news is bad! Blech!

Yes, I’ve gotten my girl back up now, and yes, I’m back in Taekwondo fighting stance, but geez!  I also had my brother make me macaroni and cheese for dinner, and ate a Dove chocolate cube.  And if I was up to it, I’d do a lot more comfort food emotional eating than that, but I’m tired now and just want to get to sleep. I am human and this is hard and it sucks.  And then again, I got knocked around a little bit, knocked down a little bit today, but I refuse to stay down.  I REFUSE!  It just is NOT my time to go!  It’s just not! So back to fighting stance for me, and let’s put faith and hope and good mojo into a drug I’m calling Vanilla Bean.

Thanks for not only being in my corner, but being in the ring with me.  Your support helps pull me through!

Much love,

Teri, the knocked around but not down Flying Elephant



  1. Keep looking forward, sending love, hugs, and prayers!

  2. Love and prayers ….. So much more to an amazing human being! Diana

    Sent from my iPad

  3. i don’t believe in bucket lists, bob. living in the moment and for the day! thanks for keeping me in the prayers and on your radar! hope things are good with you and yours!

  4. The chocolate sounded like a much better drug than Vanilla Beans! Any bucket list items we can help you with?

  5. Well, I said a bunch of bad words when I read this, but then I read the Ali comment and had to smile. That is you – a fighting warrior, and you have a WHOLE army behind you!!! Keep on punching!

  6. I am in your corner! Praying often. Let me know if you need anything! Love you!

  7. Sending good mojo your way, Teri. ❤ ❤ ❤

  8. So you have been feeling good-that counts big time in the battle! Now let the Vanilla Bean get you thru the next round. You do what You do when you get knocked down, get yourself back up and throw some more punches. You are the best fighter out there (right up there with Ali) and an inspiration to all.

  9. So sorry you are going through this. You are a strong woman and am inspiration to all. Keep up the fight!

  10. Thanks for sharing this with us, Teri. I’m so sorry to hear about the crappy results regarding your liver. All I can say is thank goodness your brother was with you, and thank goodness for your absolute determination. You have support from the outside and the inside. Keep going, and may this new chemo be a winner.


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