Wednesday, May 27, 2009


posted by Mary Lello, Wednesday, May 27, 2009, 12:22 PM

Yup, big surprise on this one, JIM is the subject! And Jim is doing really well these days. We just saw Weisburg this morning before Jim's 3rd Avastin infusion and she is elated at how well he is doing. She hadn't said this before - which is part of her magic, she keeps a very straight face during bad situations - but today she said that the slide backwards we were in a few short weeks ago was pretty scarey and she wasn't sure we would be sitting here today doing as well as Jim is doing right now. The Avastin is working because Jim is down to only 2 mgs of steroids and if the Avastin wasn't working we would not be able to go off the steriods.

Well, WHOO HOO!!!!! I'm loving these infusion days!

Jim got a brace for his drop foot yesterday and that has changed his world too. Now that foot doesn't trip him up quite so much as the brace holds it straight and sturdy so it can't go all twisty, crooked on him. He got home with that brace on and immediately took off with our friend Rob for a half hour walk. Can't hold this man down when he's ready to rock and roll! We are going to start getting PT for him too. I think a good physical therapist will be able to address these right sided issues and help him begin to gain back the muscles that he's lost and start to move a little better.

On another note, last night, after work, I went to a potluck dinner that was put on in celebration of our first year of the Portland Veterans Acupuncture Clinic (PVAC). We opened this free clinic to any and all veterans exactly one year ago yesterday. I have not been able to be at this clinic since Dec. Many of the veterans seemed to know why I haven't been there but the guys I sat with asked me where I've been. I told them and these big burly men just melted. They all said how they have missed having me at the clinic, how they will hold Jim and I in their prayers and they hope I can come back soon. Made my heart feel really good.

One guy came up to me and gave me a little hug and said "Mary, we've really missed you" I stared at him and thought "he must be new, I don't remember him".... and then he mentioned that he had shaved his beard!! He had not shaved in 30 something years (yup, Vietnam Vet) but that the whole acupuncture clinic has helped him see things so differently in his life that he wanted to shave - and cut his hair - and I have to say this little ZZ Top looking guy is VERY handsome now!!! These stories of how this clinic is changing lives go on and on, it amazing, truly. And I really miss working this clinic on Tuesday nights. It's becoming such a wonderful community of healers coming together in a cooperative environment and offering acupuncture to veterans so they can get their life back - and these vets now say that Tues. nights are sacred, its PVAC night and they wouldn't miss it for the world! They are getting their lives back with the loving care of Portland acupuncturists ....

  • .. and Jim is getting his life back too with the loving care of this community and AVASTIN!! We both are looking forward to some independence at some point in our future too.



PS - there will be a fundraiser at FLatbreads in July to benefit PVAC. I've got to get the exact date but I hope those of you in the area will think to go eat a great pizza that night. A percentage of all pizza's sold (including take out) on the benefit night will go straight to funding the veterans clinic. Please think of joining us. I'll post the date when I know it and probably Jim and I will be there too.

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