September 28, 2008

Mark and his Mom suited up for the University of Texas-U of Arkansas Game
Yesterday Mark and I went to the Texas-Arkansas game. Kickoff was at 2:30. We were excited to have a parking pass and parked close to the stadium. The day was real hot and we were in the lower section of the upper deck at the stadium. We had a great view. I had packed a large baggie with ice cubes and two washcloths. The ice melted and we put the cold wet cloths on our necks. We had bandannas, sunscreen, hats, a fan and cold drinks. Before the game and at half time, we went across the street to the Alumni Center where there was shade, dark rooms with big screen TVs, food and drink. It was great fun. Mark having cancer and many many days in the recent past when he could not get out of bed or the condo in Bangkok because of low white counts, low red counts, nausea, vomiting, no energy, and other complications has driven the point home that it is important to have fun when you can.
Mom's purse springs a leak - Mark noticed that my purse was seriously dripping water by the time we got to the Alumni Center. The zip lock did not hold on that baggie with melted ice mentioned above. A few things got wet including a zillion business cards which are now separated and drying out on the kitchen counters. A minor casualty of our fun day.

September 24, 2008

Addendum Thursday night 9/25 - Mark returned from Houston and reported:
1. No biopsy. He was prepared for the biopsy. The IV was running and the anesthetist ready when the doc decided not to do the biopsy. The mass is small and the doc decided to wait and see what happens. If Mark is in more pain or pees red or the mass grows, the biopsy can be on again.
2. The pain clinic staff was happy with Mark's gradual self imposed reduction in pain med over the past year or so. He has cut his pain med to a fourth of what it was in the past.
3. All motels/hotels in Houston on 290 or 620 seem to be full. Repair crews staying at these places. Mark and James were lucky to find a room. Our usual motel one half block from Reliant Stadium and a few blocks from the VA was full but the guys were assigned a suite because we are steady customers there.
4. There was damage by the hurricane in areas of Houston and 20% of Houston does not have electricity now.

Message 9/24 Mark is in Houston and will have a kidney biopsy in the morning
- For a long time Mark has had a mass on his left kidney. A biopsy about three years ago found it to be non malignant. The biopsy is being repeated at the Veterans' Hospital in Houston tomorrow morning at 8 am. There is some thought that the tumor on the kidney will be removed. When? We don't know. Mark had to cancel being filmed for the role of playboy/boyfriend tonight and tomorrow night due to the biopsy which he had hoped to reschedule but was unsuccessful at doing this. Mark called from the motel in Houston tonight and he was in good spirits. Mark's step father James is a good sport and drove Mark to Houston while Mark's Mom is taking care of the mentally ill in Austin. Pray for Mark getting good news from his biopsy tomorrow morning.

September 10, 2008

Mark has returned to Austin, Texas and Shooting has Resumed on the Film
Mark is home after a trip to Reno and California with his friend Alan. I have yet to get a report on his trip or the filming as I am in Downham, England visiting Mark's sister Stephanie and won't return home until late Sunday. Awaiting pictures from Mark of his trip.
Upcoming renal biopsy
Mark's appointment with a renal surgeon at the VA on the 10th of Sept. was cancelled. The doctors now want to biopsy his left kidney rather than proceding with surgery. Mark has a report that he had a renal biopsy in Thailand and it was negative. One problem is that he does not recall that biopsy and it was two years or so ago and no one at the hospital talked about it. We just found the report in his files when we got copies of all his files.

Mark's Mom and Sister Stephanie in England

Mom at the Sandringham Estate of Queen Elizabeth (click on any picture to enlarge it)

We went to the Queen's estate called Sandringham last weekend. This is a fabulous estate. I greatly enjoyed touring the house and the museum. The royal family spends Christmas each year at Sandringham and the place is full of history. Not only do royals live in historic places. Stephanie is living in a historic house in Downham Market. Her house is called The Old School. It was a school for the poor in the 1800's then a hospital in WWI and later a Montesorri School and finally it was restored to a gorgeous home.

Sign on Stephanie's house

I am not going far from Downham Market yet i am going to some interesting places including Cambridge. Last evening I was visiting the large University of Cambridge Hospital.