July 18, 2011

Graduate School Completed!

Melissa completed 2 major goals this summer; all 12 chemo treatments are completed and so are all courses to earn her master's degree. Quite an accomplishment for her as she continues on this journey!

We all went to Indianapolis this past weekend to help Matt and Aimee move into their first home.

Aimee and Matt in front of their new home!

Aimee's parents, Ed and Lynne Helbig from Pittsburgh, also came to help. We worked hard, laughed, and even had a nice dinner out!

Steve, Ed and Matt working hard!

Aimee and Melissa assembling a table!

The Maher family

The Helbig family

Matt and Aimee surprised Melissa with balloons, crepe paper streamers, and signs to celebrate her masters. Ed and Lynne brought her 2 beautiful plants from Pittsburgh. It was a thoughtful, unexpected party...complete with a Dairy Queen cake!

 Sklyar helping Aimee with the decorations!

A celebration cake for: Masters completed, chemo completed, Steve, Aimee, Matt's birthdays, and a thank you for helping them move into their home!

A toast to family time well spent together!

We have the port removal surgery scheduled for Thursday, August 4th. One more item for Melissa to check off her list of "Things To Do"!  Steve's and my list remain the same....prayers and thank-yous to all of you for your continuous prayers and support.

July 8, 2011

Cancer Be Gong!

Ready.. Set..

 "Cancer Be Gong!"

Chemo treatment #12 is done! All of her treatments are now completed! We are so excited! Her positive attitude has been exemplary during her journey with Hodgkin's Lymphoma these past six months.

Melissa's blood work was good. White counts continue to be low but Dr. Bierman was okay with that. He said she looks great!

Steve had prepared a list of 15 questions for Dr. Bierman. When do we schedule the port removal surgery? He told us we could schedule it anytime. August 24th is the day for all  her tests and scans. If the port is removed before that day, the blood work will be done through her arm. As Melissa says, "No big deal! Let's schedule the port removal surgery before the school year starts!"

Another question asked, "What are the chances that Hodgkin's Lymphoma will return after treatment?" Chances are less than 50%. Melissa will periodically have scans during the next five years to check for Hodgkin's and also monitor her heart and lungs.

Blood counts should return to normal during the next few weeks.
Gradually Melissa will begin to physically feel better and stronger.
Her hair should begin to grow over the next few months.

Before our trip to UNMC, Melissa's friend, Shelby, stopped by to give her a book, Crazy Sexy Cancer Surviviors. It is a book of healing, hope, and inspirational messages. It is written with much humor, too. We shared it with Dr. Bierman.

Melissa's friend, Katie, made a special trip to the Med. Center during her lunch hour from work. She was there to hug and cheer with all of us during this final treatment.

Laura also came to visit, support, hug, and cheer Melissa during her last chemo treatment.

All of us were teary eyed as Melissa rang the gong!

 Katie and Melissa practicing her swing!
 Katie, Melissa, and Laura
Laura and Melissa in their purple!

Never, Never, Never will we stop cheering, praying, and thanking God, family, and friends for the continuous support for Melissa!

The video of Melissa hitting the gong! Enjoy!

We made it to the finish line!

I will continue to blog as our journey has not ended. Hugs to all of you!