Steve and Jodi Knudson's Journal
Second Verse Same As The First...
Written Dec 5, 2013 10:42pm by Jodi Knudson
A couple of weeks ago, a friend noticed a white dot on the tubing of my portacath where there are calcifications (which I affectionately call my barnacles). I mentioned it to my oncologist and was sent to the surgeon's office. The calcifications are breaking through my skin.
As my luck would have it, my surgeon was on vacation so I saw his associate. She set up an appointment for me to have my port removed and a new one put in. This surgery was scheduled for the day before Thanksgiving!
I showed up for the surgery and was on the operating table, put under "twilight sleep" only to wake up to find out that this calcification is the worst case they had seen and they didn't do anything. The doctors needed to consult with other surgeons to figure out the best plan of action.
Today I met with my surgeon and am now scheduled to have the port removed on Tuesday, Dec 10th. It is just a day surgery. He wants to remove the port and the calcifications, let the area heal for 3 weeks or so and then put in another port. Keep your fingers crossed that everything will go as scheduled and there will be NO complications.
I will continue to do chemo as I am healing. They will need to put the chemo drug into my arm veins - which is fine but not for the long term.
This newish chemo is a bugger. It makes me sick and tired - literally. There are medications to combat these but it can get out of hand really easily.
Did I mention how much I love insurance companies? Today my doctor prescribed a medicine that would help with some of the side effects that are bad and the insurance company decided that they don't cover that. They wanted to charge me over $700 for ONE BOTTLE of this medicine!!! Needless to say, we are fighting this and trying to get the insurance company to cover this. Ugh. Yet another stumbling block.
Sophie and Olivia are doing good. Olivia is involved in the City Tournament with her soccer team. She loves being on her team and the coaches are outstanding. Sophie is busy with applying to colleges and scholarships. We will find out in March/April which colleges accept her.
Thanksgiving was nice at my brother's house. We miss Steve terribly. It's those little things that get us - out of the blue. Time to carve the turkey, which was always Steve's job, and I lost it. Peeling potatoes (which I didn't have to do this year) was another hard moment. We always did it together at the kitchen table watching the Macy Day Parade. We are finding different ways to honor Steve this holiday season since it was always his favorite time of year - the lights, decorations, sweets, music, friends and family.
We hope you all enjoy your holidays and take time to appreciate things that matter in your life.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays,
One Step Forward Two Steps Back
Written Nov 13, 2013 10:19pm by Jodi KnudsonThe past 5-1/2 weeks have been difficult but we are starting the healing process. Missing Steve is a daily part of our lives and we include him in our conversations, laughter and tears. It breaks my heart that he will be missing so many milestones of both girls. We take comfort in the thought that he is watching over us.
I was debating whether to keep this blog going and have decided, if for nothing else, it will be a good journal for Sophie and Olivia later on as they begin their own journeys.
Last week I had a CT/PET scan. It was not good. My cancer is spreading and we changed the chemo drug that day. I have tumors popping up just under the surface of my skin on my shoulder, arm pit, left chest, and the top of my head. We are trying a topical chemo drug on those tumors. The other tumors that showed up on the scan are in my right breast (never had cancer there before), multiple tumors on my liver, lymph nodes and pleura. Damn! This new to me chemo we are hoping will shrink these tumors. It makes me tired and I have to be extremely careful that I don't get dehydrated or sick.
Sophie and Olivia are such troopers. I was worried that they are getting "numb" to all of the turmoil that happens to be a part of our daily lives. We are going to check out a group called Safe Crossings which helps families deal with loss. They have a special program for teens that I hope will be beneficial for both of them.
I finally got all the paperwork needed to close up some loose ends. The next week or two will be spent dealing with that. This has been such a huge learning experience that, frankly, I didn't have any idea what was involved. Steve and I thought we were pretty organized as far as end of life things were concerned but there is so much more to it. Thankfully I am almost done. Whew!
People have asked if we need anything or if they can do something for us. The answer is not at this time. We are doing okay financially and are getting help on the emotional side of it. Thank you very very much!
We hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and is able to spend the day with people you love. We will be with my family celebrating and remembering why we are thankful.
RIP Steven Knudson
Written Oct 6, 2013 12:38pm by Jodi KnudsonIt is with a very heavy heart that I let you know Steve passed away on Friday morning, October 4th, in his sleep. We are missing him so much - words cannot convey how deeply he is missed.
Sophie and Olivia stayed out of school on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to spend time with their dad as we knew the end was coming. That is one decision that I am extremely grateful for. School work can always be made up but that time with their dad was priceless. On Thursday, Steve had a high fever so the girls were putting cold cloths on his head to bring the fever down. For the past few days, he could no longer eat, drink, swallow, or talk. He was asleep most of the time. It was so hard to see him in that state. We loved on him and spoke to him telling him all the things we wanted him to know. In a way, it was a gift that we were able to say what we needed to say and given the time to spend with him.
Steve's funeral services will be held on Saturday, October 12th at Floral Hills Cemetery in Lynnwood, WA. Visiting will begin at 1:00, funeral services at 2:00 and a dessert reception after the funeral. We hope you all can make it to the services.
A lot of people have asked what they can do and at this point, we can't think of anything. We will certainly let you know if something should come up.