Sunday, May 20, 2007

2nd Cycle of Chemo

So I started my 2nd cycle of chemotherapy today....... I will spend 6 days in the hospital and will most likely be feeling better by the time graduation comes around (may 31).
When I walked into my room today, my mom pointed to the white board in my room and started laughing. (The white board has the names of the nurses and the date) It said that Mary would be my nurse today, and she is the funniest lady. I really like when she takes care of me, and it seems like she usually is for some reason. We crack jokes left and right, and she also lets me do whatever I want. So I was really glad that my first day would be with a cool nurse, and it was. I gave her a card before she left for the night with a picture inside of me from my 1st cycle when she was taking care of me. She was so happy when I gave it to her and told me she was going to put it on her fridge when she got home. I laughed.
A lot of people ask questions about chemotherapy and don't know much about it so I thought I would tell you some cool stuff about the chemo that I am getting. Im actually taking 3 different types of chemo when I go through a cycle. One takes 15 minutes to take, another an hour, and the last one takes three hours. They are all given through my "port" which goes into my chest and is completely painless. The chemo is given with a couple other iv's which are for my kidneys and to keep liquids in me. The one cool thing my mom found out is that the one type of chemo that I am receiving, "vincrystine" (i think thats how you spell it), is a newer type of chemo and comes from a plant that only grows in Madagascar! Its crazy to think that people can study plants and use them to help fight cancer and probably a lot of other things too.
Last night I had a school dance, which was MORP. It was the last dance for the school year so I was really glad that I had been asked. The theme for the dance was "what you want to be when you grow up", so my date and I both dressed as pilots. Actually, we both wore clothing that was Grandpa Raitt's flight suits. They were really cool and authentic so I had to wear them. I felt like a real pilot and looked like one too. Especially with my aviators on and my shaved head! After the dance, everyone went over to this girls house and we had a big bonfire. It was really fun to just sit outside with everyone (like 15-20 people) and just talk all night. At one point everyone was pretty much circled around me and they just kept asking questions about how I was doing and what I do when I am in the hospital. I knew a lot of them wanted to ask me stuff but were too scared to, so it was fun to explain to everyone what was going on. I FELT LOVED. HA
So I just wanted to thank everyone again for their thoughts and prayers, they really do mean a lot. Also, I would like to thank my Aunt Chris for all her love and support (and the m&ms), and everything the Ulvin family has done. There are so many more families out there as well that have shown support and I want all to know how thankful I am! I will continue to "Cowboy Up"


Chris Ulvin said...

Something About Mary
Nick - glad to hear the hospital welcomed you back with your favorite nurse - You'll have to see if she knows this joke.

The day finally arrives - Forrest Gump goes to Heaven. He is at the Pearly Gates, met by St. Peter himself. St. Peter said, "Well, Forrest, it is certainly good to see you but you have to pass an entrance exam before you can get into Heaven. Forrest responds. "It sure is good to be here, St. Peter, sir, but nobody - my aunt Chris included - ever told me about any entrance exam. I sure hope the test ain't to hard". St. Peter said "The test is only three questions. First: What two days of the week begin with the letter T? Second: How many seconds are there in a year? Third: What is God's first name?" Forrest replied, "Well, the first question - shucks, that one is easy. That would be Today and Tomorrow." The Saint's eyes opened wide and he exclaimed, "Forrest, that is not what I was thinking, but you do have a point, and I guess I did not specify, so I will give you credit for that answer. How about the second one, How many seconds in a year?" Forrest replied, "Now that one is harder, but I thunk and I thunk about that and I guess the only answer can be twelve." Astounded, St. Peter said, "Twelve? Twelve? Forrest, how in Heaven's name could you come up with twelve seconds in a year?" Forrest replied, "Shucks, there's got to be twelve: January 2nd, February 2nd, March 2nd...."
"Hold it," interrupted St. Peter. "I see where you are going with this, and I see your point, let us go on to the third and final question. Can you tell me God's first name"? "Sure," Forrest replied, "it's Andy." "Andy?" exclaimed an exasperated and frustrated St. Peter. "OK, I can understand how you came up with your answers to my first two questions, but just how in the world did you come up with the name Andy as the first name of God?"
"Shucks, that was the easiest one of all," Forrest replied. "I learned it from the song. ANDY WALKS WITH ME, ANDY TALKS WITH ME, ANDY TELLS ME I AM HIS OWN."

St. Peter opened the Pearly Gates and said: "Run Forrest, run."

Aunt Chris says, "Laugh Nick, laugh" May God give both you and Mary a sense of humor this week while the chemo rids your body of cancer. Happy dreams.

Jennifer Widdison said...

Hi, it's your cousin Jennifer. Just wanted to let you know you are in mine and Tom's thoughts. Congratulations on graduating. You have so much to look forward to.

Chris Ulvin said...

Happy Monday Nick
Thought I'd share some sayings from you great Uncle George Fries of Lewistown, Montana. I know your surname is Raitt - but your appearance favors the Fries side of our family. Your love of humor comes from all sides. Maybe some of these "Georgeisms" will work on Mary. Uncle George ran a Mobilgas Station - full service - where laughter and conversation were just as plentiful as gas, oil, air and window cleaning. Some of George's greetings were:
"How the heck are ya, friend?" or "Come on in and lie to me for awhile." See how Mary responds to "How are your adenoids?" "When did you get out of jail" was one of Uncle George's favorite Montana greetings and he'd leave you with "Stay out of jail." "Have a GREAT day" is another George farewell. When ordering a meal in a restaurant, George's usual response to the waitress was "What do you want to get rid of?" Your dad has a copy of the Our Georgie Porgie Storybook. Ask him to bring it to the next "Father/Son" Sleepover - I know the stories will make Mary laugh - Love to you, Aunt Chris

Anonymous said...

Hey Nicholas!It sounds like you're doing good! My mom and I want to come up there and visit you but I have a nasty cough so it probably isn't a good idea...but don't worry I didn't forget that I still owe you a shake from Arby's so I'll be there when I'm all better! I hope everything is going alright and that you're having a SUPER time at the hospital!:-) See you soon! Peace!

Chris Ulvin said...

Good Morning Nick
Well, you are half way through your 2nd Cycle of Chemo - the Jazz are coming home to play - and in a week you will be a "Graduate". Hope more happy thoughts come your way today.
Love, Aunt Chris

Jennifer Friedman said...

Nick (and Family)-
This is Jennifer Friedman here, I have the extradorinary honor of working with Lee (through the Strategic Coach), and knowing your Family through his stories and sharing.

Nick, I just wanted to share a thought I had, and I shared this with Lee, the last time I saw him in Chicago, and have been meaning to spread this to everyone who is part of Team Raitt right now.

Lee has shared with many of his Strategic Coach groups the amazing fight you have taken on with Cancer, and your total commitment to beat this disease, and the Positive energy you have when it comes to KNOWING you will win.

So, I did some head-math, and started to put together how many groups Lee has shared your story with, and then I thought about the avergae number of people I have told in MY life about it, asking them to join with me in sending those positive waves your way, and thought; 'if EVERYONE Lee has told has the same average as me, then (and here comes the head-math) by my calculations more than HALF the WORLD is sending positive waves your way right now.' NOW, I KNOW I am not the best at math, and I might be off by a like a hundred or so, but I think I am pretty right on in saying that there is not ONE person I come in contact with that I do not ask to think about you. And, I know my Clients, here at the Coach, and I know the Clients that your mom and Lee interact with, in their business, and I KNOW they share the same thought when they come into contact with someone who needs to send you the waves, who might have not known they needed to.

SO, I am rambling now, but had to share with you, that my mission is to get the whole WORLD (I have most of Germany and Romania on it now...Family in both countries) on board. And if that is not a testament to the power of positive attraction, for you, then I don't know what is.

Thank you SO much for sharing your fight with us, and for being the amazing person you are, and you are always in my thoughts and conversations!!

Jennifer Friedman
The Strategic Coach

Beci said...

Nick....THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for the Graduation Announcement and Picture! It means so much to me!! You have grown into such a handsome young man. You actually look a lot like your Dad did when we graduated. I love your class motto "What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." - Ralph Waldo Emerson I think this fits you and what you are going through right now. I know that what lies within you is an understanding, compassionate heart, a strong-will and the ability to stay positive through everything life throws at you. You are an incredible example to all of us.
I continue to pray for your fast recovery and hope that you are feeling well enough for your graduation. CONGRATULATIONS!!
Love, Beci :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Nick,
I guess we know who got the story-teller gene in the Raitt family! Great story about thinking outside the 'box'...
We received your graduation announcement yesterday; thank you so much for sharing that with us. Nice tie!
We'll send you one from Jeremy with a recent photo also, so you can see how he has changed. Enjoy your graduation! You guys are making us proud!

Chris Ulvin said...

Good morning Nick (I'm wondering if you were able to sleep last night). I enjoyed reading about nurse Mary again and give thanks that nurse Grace is with you in 2010. I'm also encouraged that chemo hasn't taken away your sense of humor. May you continue to keep on laughing while I keep on praying. Today I read Matthew 6:21 Nick - my heart is with you because you are a treasure.
Love, aunt Chris