Hello my dearest readers. I’m sure you’ve been waiting for an update and I’ve been so busy I haven’t been able to give you one and this is going to have to be quick because even now I don’t have a ton of time. This morning has already been a little rough because I woke up with heavy bleeding (sorry TMI) which is scary but it seems to have slowed a little and I’ve told my docs so will see what happens. Yesterday was intense day where I met with more docs about radiation for the brain metastases. So the plan is to get three days of radiation starting next week which takes about 6 days to set up so they can target it to the exact points where they need to. They said it will have minimal long term effects on my brain function and they were very confident that it work to would get rid of the mini cluster of tumors which are actually at the top of my head. So I guess I was wrong when I assumed that having brain metastasis meant that you were doomed. So that is good news! I got an additional hour long brain MRI yesterday for them to map out precisely where to do the radiation and they make this cool mold of your head. Some of the sounds in the MRI machine sounded like the beginning of a Franz Ferdinand song and last night we were joking that someone should make “Music for MRIs,” Brian Eno style. Hahaha. But Sloan really blew me away yesterday with their coordination and excellent patient care. I am so grateful to be under their care at least for part of my treatment. Oh yeah, want to hear something insane? If you get one day radiation (which I will not do) they have to make sure your head stays very still and they actually have to bolt a frame into your skull!!!! How awful does tht sound? Initially I was hoping to get one day radiation to speed along the process but now that I know that, I’d much prefer the 3-day even if we have to wait to next week to start!!! I also got a regular CT scan of my chest, pelvis and abdomen yesterday to see what else is going on in my body because I’ve been having this terrible side pain for about a week. I’m pretty terrified to find out the results but hopefully nothing critical is going on inside. Unfortunately, we will have to wait at least 10 days after radiation before starting systematic treatment like chemo or any other medicine and I probably won’t be able to join any clinical trials because you usually have to wait 4 weeks post-radiation to join a trial and we just don’t have that kind of time! But it’s all up the air and we are trying to figure out what to do. First things first is get rid of the brain mets and we’ve now got a plan for that so that is good!
But in other news, something amazing has happened. My college friend Rebecca introduced me to her Reiki Master, Ellen, who lives in the Catskills. We spoke on Sunday for over an hour and she told me her amazing story of curing herself of Ovarian cancer with 20 hour Reiki marathons once a week where a group of people hand their hands on her for 20 hours straight. Pretty unbelievable. She is an amazing person who has worked for 30 years with Reiki including in both sides of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. So on Sunday, a student of Ellen’s named Michael came over and gave me Reiki and he also came the next two days. I cannot tell you how amazing the experience has been for me. Even from the first day, I felt this sense of calm that I’ve never fully felt. And during the treatment with Michael I felt this confidence that I’ve never felt before about how I WILL recover from this. Plus, I felt so connected into this new community of people who want to help me out of a pure sense of community and love for others. When Ellen and I were talking one day she said that I have a lot of good friends in my life and new ones too. I said I felt very lucky and she said, it’s not really luck, it’s karma. And that made so much sense to me. I know that I put tons of love and support in the world and now I have to just receive it back from people like Ellen, Rebecca, Michael and of course all of you! I have received so many wonderful emails and messages and it has really been a huge source of comfort for me so thank you for reaching out. Apologies if I haven’t had time to respond to you directly but please know that I feel your love deeply right now and am making good use out of it! So tomorrow Ellen is driving down from the Catskills to initiate me in the practice so that I can perform self-Reiki and also teach my friends and family to help. She said the cumulative effect is very powerful. Well, I think I have to run because Michael will be here any moment to give me Reiki! Hooray. But before I go, here is a drawing I made the other night.
I love you all out there so much and thanks for your support! xoxo Lauren