Flying to Denver

After many days of amazing peace and tranquility inspite of negative (or medical ‘positive’) news I went to Colorado Cyberknife in Denver. A good friend had secured buddy passes to fly there rather than our driving over snow-packed passes and enduring long hours. We would’ve spent more on gas.  I remarked how rich I felt just to fly to Denver, overnight, and maybe even get a bit of shopping in.

The Hotel shuttle picked us up and whisked us away. Barely put our stuff into the room and set off by shuttle service that took us to the nearest shopping center. (Nice Russian driver, married to German wife.) I spent very little.

The beds were a dream and I slept really well, until… this sound woke me at 3:11 a.m. …. snoring! For a second I thought I was back on the camino. I clapped my hands a couple of times and that took care of it.

The transportation to Lafayette was a quite a problem. There are no buses, except to get a cab to Bus station, get on, transfer twice and then it would take awhile to drive those 26 miles and then walk back to Cyberknife address. Renting a car was out of the question as I would not be able to navigate through Denver with all these crazy, speeding drivers, trucks and everything else. Especially, not knowing where I’d be going. My friend couldn’t drive as she’d had surgery 2 weeks ago.  Neither of us wanted any added stress and so we took a cab.

The driver had to use his GPS to find it as well. Cyberknife is a couple of miles outside Lafayette.  Nothing else there. We wondered how other people would get there? My appointment was 2 hrs away. Luckily, we’d stopped at a German deli and brought food. The recepionist was nice enough to make us tea. There are no stores or anything close by.

Cyberknife Disappointment

The nurse took us to the examination room, took blood pressure (was up a bit and I suppose I was a bit anxious, or, as the nurse said “because you are here”. I filled out pages of medical forms and possible problems, which went fast because I don’t have ANY, except for the little c. I don’t want to name it the BIG C since I think I am bigger than it.

More manageable that way too.

The oncologist, Dr. S., came and we started talking. He asked me what I knew about this tumor. I told him that, according to my doc it was a cancerous lymphnode, now the size of a golf ball.

“What!? What?” he exclaimed, startled. “I don’t remember anything like that.”  He turned his monitor on and there was my internal picture of organs, etc. Then, there it was. Colored in primary red. The Thingy, the cancer, the nodule, the beast. It seemed strange that this was really inside of me. I viewed it with curious detachment. But it was not a GOLF BALL. Not this round mass which I’d envisioned all this time. It’s smaller and rectangular and sits with squatters rights next to the aorta, feeding. Although that feast quite curtailed, lately. Starving it.

The risks are the same as with conventional surgery. The lower bowels are in the way to a straight shot to the back of the abdomen, to the spine. It would be a bit tricky but could be done, if not a desired 3-4 treatments but lowering radiation strength and having 10 treatments instead so as to not damage my bowels. Non-invasive and pain-free. This is the plus side. On the other side, it cannot detect anything else. My PET scan was clean in any other way, I said.

I asked Dr. S. about metronomic chemo, or RCT. He had not heard of either but was willing to check into it.

There could be recurrence and there could be this and there could be that. I would be treated as an outpatient. That means I’d have to get a hotel, nearby and for 10 days go there for 30 min a day. Then, nothing else to do in this ‘nowhereness’. Well, I guess I could walk unless the icy northwinds blow.

Survival for the Wealthy

I had researched and found another natural treatment clinic, in Arizona. The cost? A mere pittance. ONLY $8000 per week with a minimum of 3 weeks plus it’s out patient so there’s an added $1500 for an apartment. So, there I realized that all these gentler, healthier options are out of reach and felt defeated in that desire. Although, ther’s still Bad Mergentheim in Germany. Lot less and that includes plane fare.

I have not heard anything from my local doc. There was to be this meeting with medical professionals, discussing my case and giving recommendations. I had called to ask about CA 125 date. No call back. Nothing. I feel very much alone in this search and all the questions I would have. I called again and was told that Dr. had been out of town and was on an emergency call. Then, I received a call from local cancer center, telling me I’d missed my appointment. ???  I said, I have not been informed of one. We rescheduled for next week. This is on an information gathering only.  I want to be informed of ALL options and newer technology and/or treatments. I want the BEST because I AM WORTH it.

Being on this poverty level has now taught me, that this is what it is. If you’re poor, you’re screwed. You have to do what mainstream says or live (die?) with the consequences.

I was not very peaceful nor tranquil yesterday. I feel pressured by my well-meaning friends, who called in a steady stream, after my return from Denver, to ask “What are you going to do? What have you decided?” I had said, time and time again, I am going to make a decision AFTER Christmas. That I was still researching and working as hard as I can to help myself. So. I will tell them, PLEASE. No more questions. Stop asking.

I had sent Dr. Professor Koebe (in Germany) an e-mail, asking for his advice. As usual, his reply was fast and kind. He congratulated me on my ‘fabulous spirit’ and to keep that one up. He also put another, seemingly disappointing outcome into perspective by stating: “You don’t know how things were and don’t know what may have happened and what it was before you went to the cross.” Ohh, that soothed my spirit again. His advice is still, open up and go in there after it, examine and take care of it.

Other people have been working on my behalf and offered advice and suggestions. I will follow up every lead, gratefully.

Next decision would be, where to have surgery.

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6 thoughts on “Thumbscrews

  1. Inge,

    Keep up your spirit and positive thoughts. My prayers are always with you. You are an inspiration to us all!!!


  2. Mom, I know you will make the perfect decision! I know tou will beat this and I know your bravery will overcome your fear! That’s who you are! And the German doc was right! Who knows what that thing was before you went to the cross! Your drive and your spirit is the purpose God gave you to save yourself and many others! I firmly believe that! I love you mom and we will see you in a couple of weeks!

  3. Inge, I just found my note you had written website on. Wow! What an incredible journey. I’ll keep you in my prayers. Miss you at PO. Love ya, Val

    • Thank you Val and welcome to my journey. I’ll come and see you soon. There are cards to be mailed. More pictures and video’s are on FB caminonotchemo.

  4. Inge,
    I live very near Lafayette, I know precisely where the Cyberknife place is. If you choose this route, I will be happy to assist you with some housing and transportation options. I have friends with guest rooms, and I could work out rides to your appointment. You would have to be willing to rely upon the kindness of strangers.

  5. Oh Shadlee. How very kind you are and I so appreciate the offer. If I do choose that treatment, I will indeed take you upon any of possible choices. it would only be for 10 days. (I would teach people how to cook, and clean up after myself and am otherwise a delightful houseguest.) 🙂

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