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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Fun in the Sun...Punctuated by Pesky Chemotheraphy

Today begins round #11 for Zach.  We have switched his treatments from Fridays to Wednesdays for the remainder of the summer.  This will help him recover in time for the trips we have planned which all fall on the Sunday following treatment.  

Zach is feeling pretty good.  After he recovers from the side effects he has 5 or 6 good days.  Then he gets "anticipatory nausea" the day or two leading up to the next round.  His port is cleaned with rubbing alcohol and then flushed with saline.  He can taste the saline as it flushes through and makes him feel terrible.  Thinking about it too much beforehand can bring on the same nausea.  Medication is helping some.   

I asked Dr. Dan the difference between cure and remission and what they meant in Zach's case.  He said that a cure means the cancer is completely gone, never to reoccur.  Remission means that the cancer has shrunk and is being managed but it will reappear again down the road.  Dr. Dan considers Zach in partial remission while only 2-4% of patients with esophageal cancer reach full remission status.  Zach's type of cancer makes it particularly difficult to reach full remission.  We will rescan the end of August for continued confirmation he is in partial remission.  

We have being enjoying our summer to the fullest!  It has been full of lively family activities, BBQs, swimming, trips to the zoo, picnics and lots of digging and dirt.  

 Only the cutest of baby boys can wear purple diapers and get away with it.  

 Max and Sophie enjoying the sun and sand.  

 Oliver!

 Uncle Nate and Oliver getting ready to visit the zoo.  

 Zach and Max sporting their patriotic colors for the 4th of July!

 Oliver was quite interested in the animatronic dinosaurs...

 ...and a bit fearful too.  

"At least they can't get me if I'm hiding on Grandma's shoulder..."

 Grams, Oliver and Nate.  

 Checking out the giraffes...which Oliver called horses.   

Grams and Max!

 Mitch and Jessica joined in the fun.

 The Ingersoll boys.  

Mitch and Zach.

 Visiting the penguins.  They were harder to climb on than Oliver initially thought.  

 Mitch and Oliver riding the carousel.

 Max grinning and looking adorable as usual.  

 After the zoo we went out for lunch and enjoyed hamburgers and ice cream at Westside Drive-In.  Max stuck with the healthy stuff.  

 Oliver's first ice cream potato!

 Max chewing.

 Oliver lounging.  Who needs clothes when it's 100 outside?

Oliver is a very focused little boy.  The big machinery demands it!

 Max trying roasted sweet potatoes with spices.

 He likes them!

Oliver refers to this as "Max's boat" and desperately wants one too.  

 A perfect day to swim!

 Max can't help but light up with he sees Zach.  

 Mmmm....deliciousness.