And the Decision is

As many of you know, I have been on a break from treatment since returning from Boston at the end of August. We recently met with our medical oncologist in Winnipeg to discuss the possibility of doing 6 more months of chemotherapy. This was the first time we sat down with a medical oncologist in Winnipeg. I arrived to my appointment in a wheelchair because the peripheral neuropathy has been so bad in my hands and feet. The first thing the medical oncologist asked me was, “What do you know about Medullablastoma”. I told him how it was a paediatric tumour and is very rarely found in adults (about 3%). So there is very little data on successful treatment plans for adults. Doctors therefore go off what has worked for kids which is typically; the operation, radiation, then chemotherapy. In doing so, they have found that there has been a huge question mark on whether or not the chemotherapy has made any favourable differences in adults.  

Once the doctor knew we had a good understanding, he asked me if knowing what I know, where do I stand on receiving six more months of chemotherapy. We told him that if this was a couple months ago, we would probably just go by the paediatric data and go with the chemo. But because of my current state of not being able to walk and the lingering peripheral neuropathy, it was hard to see myself putting my body through a harsh regimen of chemo that had no scientific proof of being effective in adults, and would only weaken me further.

The doctor quickly agreed and said if he gave me chemo and I ended up in the hospital, he would never be able to justify why he gave it to me in the first place. It quickly became clear to Paul and I, that it was unanimous: the decision would be no additional chemotherapy.

So where does this leave us now? I am working at getting stronger, by eating lots and exercising. The neuropathy has almost completely left my hands, and it has gotten much better in my feet. However it is still lingering and has impacted my motor skills so walking continues to be very difficult. I continue to work out my muscles so that once the neuropathy is gone and my motor skills recover, I will be able to walk sooner than later.

Since my operation was very successful and they were able to remove the entire tumour, and I have completed treatment, the doctors will monitor me by scheduling regular MRI’s. Since the doctors have no definitive answers with this type of cancer, they will continue to monitor me over 5 years by scheduling an MRI every couple months the first year or two, and then eventually yearly. 

My first scheduled MRI will be in December. I am continuing to believe in my healing and I thank God everyday for all my blessings. And yes – I will be throwing myself a party every time an MRI comes back negative and the doctors tell me, there is no sign of anything. For now I enjoy being with these 3 crazies, Paul, Ruby, and Phara – they take the best care of me. Thank you again to all those who continue to message me to encourage me, you’ll never know what it means to me!

17 thoughts on “And the Decision is

  1. you are so inspiring to others and I hope you never forget that. we love you guys and support you in which ever way you choose to go ♡ – the A team

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  2. I continue to think of you Court, even though it was so long ago we worked together – you were always a joy to be around. Sending so much love and positive energy to you and your family ❤

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  3. Thank you, Courtney and Paul for your recent update. Sandra and I have continued praying for your healing and will continue to do so. Our hearts go out to you, going through all this. I too say, ”you hold a very special place in our hearts”.

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  4. So so so much love and respect for you. You are truly amazing, Court. Believing with you — we know that you walk in health & favour. 💗

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  5. Dear Paul & Courtney, Just finished reading your updated blog. We continue to support you through our prayers for your continued recovery. We believe in your healing and pray for your daily strength and patience.

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  6. Hello Courtney & Paul.
    I just wanna let you know, you are more than conquerors. Broken jars spill more water. You are stronger than you ever thought!
    The Lord is close to the broken hearted and gives them rest :).
    You are healed and all those MRI’s will remain negative and your future is bright & wrapped up with abundant blessings.

    We continue remembering you in our prayers!

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  7. Dear Paul and Courtney – you both are such an inspiration to the rest of us! I continue to pray for you and believe that God will bring complete healing to you and a peace that passes all understanding.

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  8. Dear Courtney & Paul, Thanks so much for sharing this inspiring blog post & wonderful photo of your three “crazy” caregivers! Your words reflect such a loving, wise & hopeful response to the healing journey you’re on right now and we continue to pray with you as you work at regaining strength & await positive MRI results in December. Love & prayers, Auntie Leona & Uncle Peter.

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  9. Thank you for sharing, my dear sister. Love to read your writing and learn more from you. Will always keep you in my prayers. 加油!💪

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  10. Thinking of u both and wishing u great recovery and can’t wait see u next year at the bombers game all better take care all the best Vince p

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  11. Still thinking of you Courtney. I really do hope you are able to get some strength back and you guys are able to enjoy the holiday season. Chemo is very tough on the body, so good choice in holding off. I hope it’s an unnecessary procedure for you.
    Wish you all the best and thinking of you through the holiday season.

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  12. Sounds like you made the right decision Courtney, hope you are getting stronger and feeling better every day. Merry Christmas to you and your family, thinking of you and praying for a speedy recovery.
    Take care,
    Judy, Brooklyn and Brendan

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