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12 02, 2016

A Special Tribute to an Incredible Friend

38 Comments

I only met Pat twice, but I feel like I’ve known him forever. We shared a passion for our native state of Wisconsin. Last time the Badger football team got into the Rose Bowl, I invited Pat and Pattie to California so we could all go to the game together. They did and, despite losing

8 02, 2016

I’m not dead yet!

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The commonly used name here for plasmapheresis is plasma exchange. I"m being hooked up for my third, three hour round of plasma exchange. Honestly, I'm in pretty bad shape. I'm not eating. I could give you a lot of technical information about my situation, but the bottom line is this: Five doctors and none can

6 02, 2016

My world turned upside down

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As difficult as my myeloma journey has become, the one silver lining has always been my excellent kidneys; no worries on that front. That all changed today. I learned today that my kidneys are/have failed. I was devastated to get the news; with both Pattie and her sister working for Davita Dialysis, I've heard horror

5 02, 2016

Medical mystery worthy of reality TV

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I'm a medical mystery. Why should I be surprised? Some of the medical news is good. But overshadowing basic improvement are a long list of unanswered questions. I've never had more blood drawn in my life! Let me pause here to apologize to a number of readers that commented following yesterday's post. Our WordPress blogging

4 02, 2016

Enough drama already!

3 Comments

Ongoing struggles recovering from my second stem cell transplant in six months make it easy to write compelling posts. But enough already! I was admitted to our local Baptist hospital last night after an emergency room visit that revealed I had pneumonia that was getting worse by the hour. Of course Pattie had to drag

20 01, 2016

It shouldn’t be so hard to get excellent care

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Reliable healthcare. One would think all of the money spent on our behalf would guarantee a consistent standard of care. Au contraire! It's disheartening for me to admit it, but without a dedicated caregiver advocate--or patients like us that work tirelessly to stay up-to-date--it's likely that the care received by someone who isn't paying attention

18 01, 2016

Medical Update: Stinky news

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Rough weekend. As I explained in a post last week, I'm not used to backsliding--post transplant--once I start improving. Once again, diarrhea is a real problem. Imodium or Lomotil is only slowing things down for three hours at a time, making this the "I'm in danger of becoming dehydrated," type of diarrhea. Is that why

16 01, 2016

Blood Glucose, MGUS, Myeloma & Metformin (Part Nine)

1 Comment

A lot has happened since I ran two of the final installments about the importance of controlling blood glucose by Danny Parker: Blood Glucose, MGUS, Myeloma & Metformin (Part Seven and Eight)   ASH, unscheduled trips to the ICU, Iowa City drama. A lot went wrong in December. I'm still having trouble bouncing back from

5 01, 2016

Stem cell transplant fallout front and center in 2016 (Part Two)

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I kicked off my 2016 posts yesterday this way: "Euphoria over a myeloma free PET scan doesn't make everything else OK. I've been struggling with post transplant side effects... Still plenty of drama to kick off 2016." Monday I wrote about how stressful insurance mix-ups can be. And I didn't even get into the financial

1 01, 2016

Hope springs eternal in 2016

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Never a dull moment. Our end of Amelia Island lost power over the holiday. It happens a lot. Even when it isn't windy, a heavy rain can leave us without power. The unusual part this time: our electricity was off for so long. It usually sputters back on after an hour or two. I took