Is the old saying “death by one thousand” or “ten thousand paper cuts?” Either way, welcome to the world of any multiple myeloma patient! Traveling by car to Orlando this weekend for a friend’s wedding, I mentioned to my wife, Pattie, how I had heard back from my oncology nurse, Ally, yesterday with my blood counts and M-spike results. My M-spike is still .3. No change. I thought this was good news—at least two more months of lower dose Revlimid—only 10 mg 14 days on and 14 days off. But Pattie didn’t react. I prompted her: “Hey Hon, isn’t that good news?” Still no reaction. “But my M-spike isn’t getting any worse!” I exclaimed. Pattie paused and replied: “But it isn’t any better.” Well said. Pattie is “greedier” than I—she wants it all—she wants a cure! I’m more practical. I will take whatever I can get! That said, I did start to ponder my fate as we quietly drove on. One or two more months. It could be so much worse! Or as she said—it could be so much better! Here I sit—as do all my fellow myeloma patients—waiting and watching. Watching, waiting, and hoping—and praying—for just a bit more time. A few more months or years. For some of the more fortunate of us, we may live much longer than anyone anticipated. But some of us won’t. Don’t get me wrong—it could always be worse. But multiple myeloma means three/four/five years or (hopefully) longer of blood tests, X-rays, MRI’s, chemotherapy and stem cell transplants which sap our strength and tear down our bodies—one test, one pill or IV, one “paper cut” at a time.
No matter what my friends, try to feel good and keep smiling! Pat