Friday, December 27, 2013

December 27, 2013

I hope you all had a Very Merry Christmas. We did miss the rest of the family, but Gary, Casey and I had a nice little Christmas celebration in Houston. We grilled on Christmas Eve and had a turkey dinner on Christmas day. Houston is a very diverse city. The grocery store has huge hispanic, asian, and indian sections. No PA dutch section, so I was a little lost until I found the huge wine section. Santa was able to find us and Casey was able to face time his dog (and sister). I do enjoy the 60 degree days and do not miss the snow. Casey did not have to go to the hospital on Christmas. We hook him up to an IV everyday that he does not have to go into the hospital. He gets anti fungal medicine and magnesium through the IV. We go for walks through the apartment complex and watch a lot of television. Things are going smooth. Casey had a bone marrow aspiration last week and the results should be here next week. Meanwhile there is a lot of football to watch.
Thank you for all of the cards and gifts. You have all been wonderful!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

December 21, 2013

To catch up on what has happened since my last post. I left Houston on Sunday and Gary arrived. We were able to have lunch together with Casey in his hospital room before I came home. Monday Casey was discharged from the hospital. Gary and he are in the apartment and making daily trips to the hospital. Casey has to give himself shots every day for the next 6 months because of the blood clot. They did another ultra sound, but it has not changed. Casey's counts continued to climb with the help of neupogen. They stopped the neupogen and his counts are falling off a little, but that is to be expected. He got another dose of neupogen yesterday and some platelets. All of this has been hard on his liver, but with all things considered, we are all very happy with the way things are progressing. I arrived in Houston on Tuesday night, our walk on Wednesday was a bit laborious, by Sunday I was sprinting to keep up with him. I pray the improvement continues.
Casey received a nice "care package" from Tam Wilson that will keep is fed for the next couple of weeks. Thank you Tam. He has also received many cards from friends and members of our church. Thank you to everyone. I am heading back on tonight. Gary, Casey and I will spend the holidays together. Annie & Bowie get to spend to holidays with my parents and Caroline will spend them with Stevie and Erik. Caroline and Casey will be able to face time each other. Caroline gets so excited when she is able to do that. I am sure Gary will have all of the banana trees in Houston mapped out until I get there. We have a banana tree at home that Gary is obsessed with. The thing is about 14 feet tall. Good thing we have high ceilings.
On another note, I have to brag about my son in law Erik. Erik is in Scotland, he was chosen as an assistant coach for Team USA in the Duel in the Pool.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

December 12, 2013

My last post I said Casey's white blood count was .3. I got excited only to have his counts come in at 0.0 again for the next several days. On Monday his count was up to .2, Tuesday it maintained at .2, Wednesday .5 (I was starting to breath) and today it is at .9. Good things are starting to happen. After his first 2 transplants failed to engraft, I am still cautious to not get too excited, but things sure do feel promising. I arrived in Houston on Tuesday night. Air travel is never easy, but winter snow storms make things more difficult. But I did get here. I got into the apartment and moved all of Casey's stuff in, went to Target and Costco and got everything they will need for several weeks. I even got our turkey for Christmas dinner. Casey is looking forward to PA Dutch style filling. I will go home on Sunday and Gary will come down. I will return on December 21st and stay into the middle of January. We will be racking up the frequent flyer miles over the next 3 months.
Casey and I went for 2 walks yesterday, which is a great improvement over last week when it was a huge effort for him to get out of bed to go to the bathroom. His stomach continues to give him problems, his bones ache and his hair is just about all gone, but I think he is doing really well. It is a lot easier to be here with him, than to be 1500 miles away. 60 degree temperatures aren't too hard to take either.

Casey's apartment address is:

Casey Coble
8181 Fannin Street
Apartment #2213
Houston, TX 77054-2989

Thursday, December 5, 2013

December 5, 2013

Today we have good news and bad news. Casey's white blood count went up to .3 (baby steps). The bad news is he found out his doctor is a Dookie. I said "don't tell him you are a tar heel, you need to get good care". He said "too late", they were talking about last night's basketball game and Casey told him he is a UNC alum. He told Casey is a Duke alum. Casey said "uh-oh". Hopefully this doesn't lead to another colonoscopy.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

December 4, 2013

Gary got home last night, so Casey is in the hospital alone right now. I will be going out to him on Tuesday. I will get the apartment and have it all ready for when he is discharged from the hospital. You never know exactly what day that will be and when you are 1500 miles away you need to plan in advance for the what ifs. Stevie is at home and doing well. She is a bit tired from all of the stuff they took from her and her back is healing. Most of the swelling has gone down. Gary and Casey had a nice Thanksgiving dinner in the hospital. Casey's counts are at 0.0 and he is having stomach issues, so he is very tired. He still has the blood clot, which they are trying to dissolve with medication. He will have to take it easy and take medicine for the next 6 months. He has very low platelet count and no immune system, so medication is the only option. At least with the port pulled out, the amount of pain has eased a bit. He does still have some pain, but it is manageable. Gary says all he does is works and sleeps. It really is hard to imagine how hard a swim coach works when they are not on deck unless you live with one (or sit with one in a hospital daily). The doctors want him to walk at least 3 times a day. So Casey, this is your mother, "you need to step away from the computer and go for a walk".
The doctor's tell him to expect his counts to start rebounding around day 21. We are at day 12. This is his 3rd transplant, but each one has been different. We really don't know what to expect, so we just keep praying.

Stevie says hi.

Gary's Thanksgiving Dinner

Casey's Thanksgiving Dinner

Casey and Caroline face timing on Stevie's phone. Gary says I need an I Phone. This is the happiest he has seen Casey all week. Caroline definitely recognizes him.