1) Six weeks of daily chemo and radiation to shrink the tumor. That's 28 treatments with weekends off.
|Radiation every afternoon at 3:05 (minus the blanket).|
|Xeloda—chemo in a pill!|
I take four of the large ones after breakfast and three more large ones after dinner.
2) Surgery in November to remove whatever is left of the tumor plus all of the surrounding lymph nodes (basically the whole rectum).
|Who needs a rectum anyway?|
I will also have a temporary ileostomy to divert bowel traffic while things heal.
|Ileostomy—draining from the small intestines so the resected large intestines can heal.|
3) Four to six months of additional chemo on the chance that some rogue cancer cell wants to try and kill me later.
|Cancer cell—Rogue Leader|
4) Surgery to reverse the ileostomy followed by a lifetime of learning how to use the new plumbing.
|Don't worry, be happy!|
The whole process will take until May or June of next year. So... one step at a time. As of today I am in week five of step one. This afternoon I received radiation treatment 22 of 28. Only six more to go!