So that's 9 cycles of chemo (and 4 months in) now and it's still working!:-) The CEA marker is now down to 15 which is really encouraging 🙂 I also had a CT scan a few weeks back and this also confirmed that the cancer cells are smaller than they were when we started.
Catherine and I caught up with Alice for the first time recently and she was really pleased with how things are going. Whilst I still have the side effects I have mentioned before (skin rash / spots being the main one, along with a bit of nausea and hair thinning), it is all totally manageable and not getting in the way of life! Alice has explained that for the moment while it appears to be working and I am able to continue we should do exactly that. At some point in the future the cancer will mutate and start to fight back so I am told....the is apparently inevitable with the cancer I have. At this point then the chemo will stop as obviously there will be little point in continuing. Whilst this will ultimately mean the end of the conventional treatment, I remain hopeful that I can get myself on a trial of some kind (something which I am continuing to research as much as I can online).
The obvious question I have asked is 'how long will it be before the mutation of the cancer cells happens'? - the honest answer is that it's really difficult to know - could be months, could be years - fingers crossed it will be the latter. As I sit here now typing this blog, I can honestly say it feels a million miles away to that 'end date' - life's good and I remain incredibly positive that something will come round the corner that I can take advantage of. It is just a case of staying as physically and mentally as fit as I can is the way I see it.
We have just booked a fantastic family holiday in the Maldives next Easter which we are now really looking forward (like most, getting abroad feels like a very distant memory and so to have this to focus on will be great!). We have told Alice about and she is totally fine with giving me a break for one cycle so this can happen.
In the meantime, I can crack on with the running (and now more recently on my new Peloton bike which is my new best friend! - I love it as it means I can continue to exercise in one go managing the fact that I have one lung to pull me along). Dont get me wrong running will always take priority for me, however more recently it has become a bit frustrating in that I have to stop every couple of kms to catch my breathe, whereas with cycling it is much easier to manage.
Being able to still exercise every day while being on chemo continues to be a huge help in all aspects of both my physical and mental wellbeing. 100-120 odd km on the bike + a few km running each week sets me up just right everytime!