Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Change is Inevitable

When I last posted, it was Monday evening.  It is now Wednesday evening - just 48 hours later.
Here is how those 48 hours have gone!

When I arrived at the hospital Tuesday morning, fully expecting to bring Lothaire home with me, the team of doctors came in to the room and said that unfortunately, Lothaire did not qualify for the study since he had already taken doses of prednisone that were different from what the study required.
Back to Plan A - and Lothaire would not be coming home just yet!

The chemo plan for him is DA EPOCH - here is my simplified version:  4-5 hours administration of a bio therapy drug called Rituxan, followed by 96 hours of the chemo regimen, concluded by the administration of cyclophosphamide (spell THAT without looking!) which is the drug that apparently often brings on severe nausea.  And that is when he gets to come home.  This occurs every 21 days - the number of treatments depending on the response of the cancer.  Usually somewhere between 3 and 8.

Fortunately, they had not removed the PICC line, so after signing some paperwork and explaining that the first drug administered, Rituxan, could have some crazy side effects, they hooked him up and began the treatment.  This was about 5:45 PM.

Crazy side effects - rigors.  I can talk about this now because it is over and he is okay.  But within 10 minutes of the onset of the therapy, Lothaire began shaking uncontrollably.  Anticipating that possibility, the nurse had doses of demerol on hand.  It took two doses, after pausing the therapy, and lots of blankets, but he finally became calm again.  They started up once more and bumped it up slowly, and he tolerated it well after that.

Son in law, Shane, came to visit just before the treatment began.  Lothaire was
ready to get going!!!

Ready, Set, Go!  Smiling - not knowing what was just around the corner (the rigors)

As soon as the bag was empty, they connected the chemo formula.  No side effects.  I went home about midnight, assured that he was going to be fine.  And he was.
When I returned the next morning, here is what I found:):

He was up and showered and ready to do laps around the floor!  Our daughter, Chelsea, had slit tshirts on the right side - where the picc line is - and attached velcro.  No more hospital gowns for our stylin' man!  He felt great and we took our 5 laps, then settled in to our computers.

I must tell you how much your emails and messages and Facebook posts and responses to the blog mean to him and to me.  Your love and your concern and your prayers help to sustain us in a very real way!  We don't have time to respond to all of them, but we read and treasure each and every one!

The journey ahead is promising.  Yes, he will probably lose his hair and a little weight.  But he is a fighter and a man of faith - knowing that he is in the Lord's hands and that all will be well, regardless of the outcome.

WE CAN DO HARD THINGS!  And we know that each one of you have hard things to deal with in your lives!  As we seek help from the Lord, He strengthens us and helps us to understand.

We are so grateful for the feelings that arise during this Easter week - contemplating the hard things that our Savior did for us.  We love him, and want to be more like him, and marvel at the comfort, the mercy, the peace, and the hope that his wondrous atoning sacrifice offers to each of us.

Our kids worked together to create this precious poster to have in Lothaire's hospital room.
Each picture filled with love and joy!  How we love our posterity, and how grateful we are to know that families can be eternal, through the Atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ!


  1. I love your bright positive spirit! I love you both and I barely even know you! I am still here in Mesa, if I could ever do anything for you! Love, Susan Dyar

    1. We would love a visit Susan! And we love and pray for your missionary in Chile - he is so wonderful!!

  2. We pray for you and your family....we just never know what trials we are going to be called on to bear. Chemotherapy is tough....but you got this!

  3. We pray for you and your family....we just never know what trials we are going to be called on to bear. Chemotherapy is tough....but you got this!

  4. I just found your blog again. I had seen it long ago before it was put on hold. I am thrilled to see that you have decided to post about this difficult time for you. We have been so worried. We love you so much and we have never even met you! We pray for you. Your attitude is a blessing to us and we love feeling your sweet personalities. What an inspiration you are to all of us. One of our daughters went through chemotherapy too. Not Fun. We know the Lord will bless you. We will be watching the blog closely now. We will continue to pray for the dear parents of our daughter for almost 18 months (Hermana Nicole Pemberton). Thank you for your example and all of the service you have both given! All Our Love, Steve & Julie Pemberton

    1. Thank you for your sweet thoughts and for your prayers! We love Hermana Pemberton so very, very much! We know that she returns to you next month - please give her big hugs from us!!

  5. Brother and Sister Bluth!! We got word about your cancer this evening. My parents in Brazil emailed us, who had heard from the Broadbents, about your news. We're so grateful to read about your experience and combine our prayers with yours! We love you and add our faith to yours! Thank you for your examples, and your determination. We will pray for you in all of our family prayers and you will be in our thoughts and on prayer rolls regularly wherever we have family. WE LOVE YOU!!! Catherine (McAllister) Shapiro and all of the McAllister family

    1. How wonderful to hear from you Catherine, and to feel your sincere love and concern for us! Thank you for your prayers - we love you!!