Peter’s Update!

A message from at 7:18pm about Jobs, Peter. Comments Off.

It’s been nine months since my last update. I figured it was time to log in and make one.

First, I have a job! (Sort of.) Since October, I have been a substitute teacher in several school districts covering classes from kindergarten through eighth grade in a variety of subjects including: Physical Education, Art, Music, Orchestra, Technology Education, and most recently, Spanish. (If you were wondering, I don’t speak any Spanish.)

In May, I get promoted to a long-term sub, meaning I will be a substitute teacher in the same classroom for the remainder of the school year. Woo! Except it comes with no benefits. Boo!

All the experience I’m getting will hopefully translate into a full-time, contracted job offer for the 2008-09 school year. Wish me luck!

In other news, the cornea transplant has gone smoothly. I go in for my not-quite-1-year follow-up next week, at which we will discuss the removal of stitches from my cornea. (Ew!) Just my luck that this will all happen during the end of the school year, beginning of summer school, and teacher-interview season.


Peter’s News

A message from at 12:10pm about Cornea Transplant, Jobs, Peter. Comments Off.

On May 30, I received a cornea transplant in my left eye. This was done to replace the clouded cornea which resulted from my first eye surgery 15 years ago.

Recovery is going well. Some vision has been restored, but not much… yet. The full extent of how much vision will be restored won’t be known for about a year. It’s still very sensitive to light, so I’ve regularly broken the fashion faux pas of wearing sunglasses indoors to fit my comfort. As of right now I’m on doctor’s orders to remain out of the swimming pool until further notice. Unfortunately, swimming is my preferred method of exercise.

In other news, the job hunt is going well. I will be teaching 6th graders (7th graders-to-be) over the summer in Madison. I am still looking for a full-time position in the fall, and have already completed a couple interviews. Next up is completing more application forms, resumes, coverletters, and interviews.


Message to JCI

A message from at 1:51am about Dad, Family Members, Health, Jobs, Lung Cancer. Comments Off.

Dear friends:

Can’t imagine almost 1 month has passed since the diagnosis. That was the roughest month in my life. Now I’ve got some strength back. So I can tell you what has happened.

Everything started with a minor chest pain in March which doctors had no clue about the cause. The pain advanced so quickly that almost knocked me out on 4/4 and I was brought to an ER by an ambulance. Since chest X-ray and blood test showed nothing. I was treated for pain and released. With the follow-up X-ray 5 days later, my doctor found pneumonia. I was given antibiotics for a week but the pain never went away. In the third X-ray on 5/8 my doctor found a shadow and immediately sent me to a lung doctor the following day. The diagnosis was cancer.

Since the diagnosis, everything went at the highest speed. CT scan located four tumors in my lung including one on the chest bone—the source of my pain. MRI of my head was negative but PET scan found 14 additional tumors in my liver, 1 big and 13 tiny ones, and another big one on my pelvis. The classification was stage IV non-small cell lung cancer, a common one for nonsmokers. A six-month treatment plan was scheduled.

I was implanted an IV port on 5/17 and radiation and chemotherapy started on 5/21. That’s the beginning of two weeks of hell. Fever hit me on 5/22 which brought me to ER but the doctor found nothing and I was sent home
after they knocked down the temperature. Fever hit me again the next day which drew an ambulance and I was hospitalized for the rest of the week. I was given combinations of antibiotics although tests and cultures were all
negative except that white counts were high, suggesting infection somewhere. The theory was that pneumonia was never cleaned up. Since I was responding to the antibiotics, I was sent home on 5/26.

The fever and treatment wore me down so much that I spent almost 75% of time in bed or chair. Now the strength starts to come back slowly. I hope the road ahead is not as bumpy. This is the update for now. I’ll let you know my progress periodically.