Jody’s Health – April 2023

Jody’s journey – fighting cancer
Monthly Updates
September | August | July | June | May | April | March | February
January 2023 | December | October/November
The March 16th Fundraiser at OCC Road House
(Bert’s Harley-Davidson – Clearwater)
GoFundMe page setup by our daughter Ashlee
Jody has passed away – 9-4-23 at 2:47PM

Added 9/18/23 – Jody’s Tribute Page

April – 2023

4-30 SUN

Ash and Nate came over for the Rays game. Jody’s had a good day.
Bloodwork at the oncologist tomorrow AM. Hopefully her platelet levels are up
Walking sessions –
3 laps around the stairs (approx. 120 steps, 8:45AM). She was VERY tired after this session
3 laps around the stairs (approx. 120 steps, 1:15PM)
2 laps around the stairs (approx. 80 steps, 6:15PM)
Approx 320 steps

4-29 SAT
Walking sessions –
3 laps around the stairs (approx. 120 steps, 8:45AM)
First time5 consecutive laps around stairs. With walker but unassisted (I walked directly behind her and was ready in case she fell, she never did (I have to admit, it was nerve racking though lol. approx 200 steps, 1:15PM)
3 laps around the stairs (approx. 120 steps, 5PM)
steps to the table to eat supper.
Then one extra lap around stairs (approx 50 steps)
Approx 490 steps+ misc steps (previous high, yesterday 300)

4-28 FR
I’m concerned about in-home health care. We may not qualify. I had Shore Acres look, to no avail.
A referral person from Sandbay is also looking, they thought they found one, we called, they don’t accept our insurance.
It may just be me doing all this. There’s more to it than just trying to get her up to walk.
It’s a struggle sometimes, but I’m, doing the best I can, BUT, I have to go to work soon. No paycheck since mid March.
Thank God, our daughter Ashlee did the fundraiser, 50/50, and the GoFundme. I’d be dead in the water.
Along with our neighbor Kirsten which has been with me, all the way through this. She set up a MealTrain for 2 months. I didn’t even know what one was. Wow, what a life safer. Neighbors sign up and pitch in a meal about every other day. So it not only saves quite a bit of money, but the time to go to the store, purchase, and cook a meal.

Great day for walking. She was whipped though after the longer walks. She’s still pretty weak even when I help her to stand and when she’s walking.
She’s doing it though!!
First time 4 consecutive laps (with 3 wheeled walker)!!! Approx 160 steps, 9:30AM)
Walked from recliner to table (approx 10 steps, no walker, but I helped and held her)
First time she’s eaten at a table in probably 2 1/2 months.
First time – She walked from the table to recliner (approx 10 steps). She got up from the chair herself, and then I helped her back just in case she was going to fall. I don’t think she would have. Better safe than sorry for sure though.
3 laps around stairs (approx 120 steps, 5:45 PM)
Approx 300 steps total

4-27 TH Jody’s still having issues getting up from wheelchair, couch, chair…onto a walker.
She can get out of the bed, only because I raise the hospital bed high enough, she’s almost standing up to start with. It’s still nice to see she can do this from the bed though.
I use 2 walkers. The basic one with the tennis balls. I normally use this if Jody is more tired than normal as this one walker has more resistance. The main one I’m using now has 3 weeks, and pretty much rolls freely.

The progress is minimal these days even though I’m working with her everyday. She still seems to be ‘afraid’ a bit to walk. I think some of the issue is this and it could still be fatigue. It’s been since Feb 23rd or so during the radiation treatments in which she could walk.
Ash, Nate and family came over and brought Sonny’s. Jody’s having no issues eating now. That’s good to see, as at one time, she went about 4 weeks without eating anything except drinking Boost and Ensures.
Neighbor Karen S made Sweet and Sour Chicken (along with Blue Berry Muffins). We had that for Lunch and will have it today as well. Thank you!
Walking sessions –
2 laps around the stairs (approx. 80 steps, 8:45AM)
2 laps around the stairs (approx. 80 steps, 3:45)
She also walked from the foyer back to the recliner (approx 15 steps)

4-26 WED
Walking sessions –
2 laps around the stairs (approx. 80 steps, 8:45AM)
Went out to eat. Got back and Jody walked w/ walker from Jeep up both stairs, then into our house. (approx 30 steps)
1 more lap around stairs (appox. 40 steps)

4-25 TU
Walking sessions –
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps, 7:30AM)
around the stairs, 4 laps (approx. 160 steps, 8:45AM) | First time Stayed standing up without walker after walking for about 30 seconds
Went out with my parents to Taquitos. When we got back, I parked in the next door neighbors drive-way and helped Jody walk home w/ walker. She got in the wheel chair once she got to our first step (approx 50 steps)

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First time standing without a walker since late Feb

4-24 MO
Went to the oncologist at 2. PLAT (Platelets) still low. So no chemo pills this week.
A little disoriented on the way to the oncologist
Raised the dosage of steroids from 6MG to 12MG. Probably do 4+2MG morning, and then in the evening
Ate a good supper (thanks neighbor Heidi for the beef stew!)
Walking sessions –
Weights on legs
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps, 8AM)
Chair to foyer  (approx. 15 steps)
Jeep to front step (approx. 15 steps)

4-23 SUN
I got up at 5 (not sleeping good at all these days between the selling of the business and what’s going on with Jody), got Jody up at 7:30.
Got her all ready. Went for a long walk (Jody in wheelchair) to the north end of the neighborhood, went out on Starkey Road and back down 102nd Ave. Nice walk with Lucy.
Sat out on the back porch as we have pretty much everyday. Jody has raised butterflies since July 5th, 2021. Obviously she is not now, so I took over, but not the the extreme she was (to date we’ve raised and released 639 Monarchs, including a couple Queen butterflies mixed in), pretty much any given time during the day, you can see 3-7 Monarchs flying around our backyard. So if you live in our neighborhood and see a Monarch, think of Jody lol.
She LOVEs raising and releasing them. A record 13 Monarchs released which eclosed the day before.
I purchase Milkweed every once in awhile.

We watched the Rays kick butt once again 19-3 now. She also actually wanted to get on her laptop. It’s been at least 3 months since she’s been on her computer…pretty cool. I added her email to my Outlook so I could keep track on her emails as she’s had that address for 20 years. I wasn’t for sure when or if, she’d ever be able to again.

Practiced getting up and down out of bed onto the walker. 3rd day straight she could get up out of her bed and get onto the walker. No assistance.
She seems to be slightly better and getting up out of the wheelchair without me helping her. Still has a ways to go though, but I see a slight improvement

Walking sessions –
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps), into wheelchair, then we went on our walk.
Second walking around stairs after dinner (7PM)
After that we practiced getting up, then sat back down, then back up using the walker. Could do 3 times even ever walking.
Really a great day for Jody, coherent, had a great walk with Lucy. Had a great conversation during the walk.

Thanks to ALL that contributed to the GoFundMe, the OCC Fundraiser, along with the neighborhood MealTrain which REALLY helped in more ways than one. So glad Jody can enjoy these wonderful meals that were contributed.
Without you all, I would not be able to take this time off to help Jody as she totally needed this

4-22 – Neighborhood garage sale. I got up and 5:30AM and got Jody up. Got her all ready within a half hour. She did great at moving along. Dad showed up at 6:30. Jody stayed up the whole time. She crashed after we got everything in though. About 2PM
At the care centered, they lowered the bed and had her get up, I find that raising the bed, and having her get out of it is best. Today was the second time she got out by herself using the walker.
Walking sessions
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)

4-21 – FR – FIRST time Jody actually stood up without assistance in 2 MONTHS (Feb 22nd I believe was the last day she could walk. This was during the last 1 1/2 weeks of radiation).
Stood up from the bed to her walker.
No walking. We just practiced up and down from bed and stand up using the walker

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First time standing unassisted in 30 days!!!!! A Huge day!!!

4-20 – TH
Went to OCC Road House Grill. Stayed from 6 til 9. Great band. Good times
Jody really had a good time.
Walking sessions
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)

4-19 – WE
Took Jody and Lucy for a walk down the end of 102nd by the canal
Eating very good. Great to see! Hard to believe she pretty much went a full month + without eating anything. Jody lived on both Boost and Ensures. Even with that, she didn’t drink them that much.
Checked out “Livestrong” at YMCA. Therapy for cancer patients.
Also joined a support group forum – Lot’ of post from others that also have this terrible Glioblastoma cancer.

GOING TO OCC tomorrow for bike night. Can’t wait. Jody, son-in-law Nate, our daughter Ashlee and I will be there.
Jody’s first time in months. She missed the fundraiser for her on March 16th. Glad to see she is going tomorrow. She’ll be wheelchair bound, but nevertheless, she will definitely be there!!!

Walking sessions
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)

4-18 – TUES
Stopped by Dr Tralins office in Bardmoor to have a talk about Jody’s walking along with a couple other things.
He’s going to try to speed up the in home therapy. I have yet to hear back from the person that was supposed to call back about in home help after our primary doctor visit.
Took Jody out and about. I try to do this maybe once every 2-3 days.
Walking sessions
around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)
Walked from the Jeep to the garage (approx 15 steps)

4-17 – MON
3 walking sessions w/ walker
7:45AM around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)
Had an oncologist meeting concerning if Jody can start the chemo pills. Her PLATO (Platelet) levels are too low.
This was also low on the last blood work which is why she’s starting late on the chemo pills. What get’s me is they did blood work while she was in the care center (which would have been the 3rd), and those results were available to the oncologist. Had they mentioned that the PLATO was low then, I might have left her there at the care center knowing that they were NOT going to start her on the chemo pills (again, care centers won’t allow patients on chemo pills). I pulled her out early that Friday since she was ‘supposed’ to be on the chemo pill the following Monday.
Someone messed up and they either didn’t get the results or just plain didn’t read them.

So she’s on some meds for the low platelet level. Possibly next week. Need to get these chemo pills going.
Chemo pills – 1 daily, 5 in a row, then 3 weeks off.
Walked from the chair to the front door (approx 15 steps)
Walked from the Jeep to the front door first step (approx 30 steps)
Great day for Jody. Did some reading and on her cell phone some. Sat out front with Lucy for a bit

4-16 – SUN
4 walking sessions w/ walker
7:30AM around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)
Walked from the car to the wheel chair at the front step (approx. 40 steps)
Walked from the foyer to the living room (approx. 15 steps)
5PM Walked around the stairs (approx. 40 steps)
Met my parents at Willie Jewel’s Bar-B-Q for lunch. Jody did great getting in and out of the car. Of course I had to help her, but overall very good.

4-15 – SAT
Walked/wheeled the neighborhood with Lucy
3 walking sessions w/ walker
from the bed to the wheelchair in foyer (approx. 15 steps)
Around our stairs (approx. 40 steps)
Around our stairs (approx. 40 steps)
Still an issue of having Jody actually stand up. I still can’t figure out if it’s fatigue, confidence, or just not wanting to. Once she’s up, she can walk with the walker, but rather gingerly.
This is most definitely from the radiation though and not the tumor as I saw her decline every day for the last 2 weeks of her treatments. She’s very slowly getting better though
grilled burgers for supper

4-14 –
2 walking sessions w/ walker
walked from bedside to almost foyer.
Walked around the stairs
Decent day.
Jody is eating very good these days
grilled hot dogs for supper

4-13 – TH
Walked from the bed to the foyer. Then I took Jody for a walk (wheelchair) down 102nd
Went to the Rays game with Jody. Sat in 345 section. Great view. Sure can’t beat it for $10 each. FINALLY got to go to a game with Jody. Rays WON – 13 and 0 right now!!! Sheryl our friend/Rays host came up to see her when we were at the game. Real nice to see her
When we got back, she walked from the car to the first step. #jodyFstrong

4-12 WED – Did 2 walking sessions.
Ash and the girls came over to see Jody while
Nate, Steve, Noah treated me to a Rays game tonight (12-0 – GO RAYS)

4-11 Took Jody to get taxes and check the camper.
Went for a walk with Lucy down 102nd ave by the canal.
Jody went with me to run some errands.
2 walking sessions (with walker) –
walked from the chair to the wheelchair
walked from the Jeep to the front step
First day on Panacur C

4-10 – MON 2 doctor appointments today. 1:15 at the oncologist. I’m sure this is to see how often to take the chemo pills. Most likely 5 a month (sure better than 30 a month) and discuss any other meds.
2nd appointment at 3:45 at my dr to discuss in-home care.
Jody walked with a walker from the car to the front door (#3). Ashlee went to the appointments and helped Jody walking

4-9 Happy Easter – Went to my parents for the afternoon and watched the Rays (9 and 0 now!!!)
She had a good day. Stayed awake the entire time. Did great on her meal.
Jody walked with a walker from the Jeep to the front door
38 years ago today me and Jody got engaged!!

4-8 SAT – SAT Jody did a walk around the stairway with a walker. Her sister Kelli helped out.
First walk at home since the end of February. That radiation REALLY took a toll on her toward the end of the sessions.
One month ago today, Jody was taken by ambulance to Northside due to blood clots. 🙁

4-7 FR – Jody was discharged at 10AM from Shore Acres Care Center.
She’s glad to be home in her own bed. I’ll continue working  on getting her walking again.

4-6 TH – I got to the care center at about 8:45. I took Jody to the Bardmoor appoint about 1:30, got there about 2:30
Had the MRI results appointment. Went pretty much as expected. The tumor is still there. They show no progression which is good.
Chemo pills will start again early next week. Oncologist appoint set for Monday
She’s eating much better which is also good. Struggles to get up and walk.
She will be coming home tomorrow Friday. Will be so glad to have her home.

4-5 WED Went to see Jody from at 8:45. Stayed until 12:30. She did good on her walking therapy.
She will be having another session the afternoon. Ashlee will go about 2.
The people there are amazed at the support we give Jody. We’re on our 3rd page of guests to visit Jody.
We had the Shore Acres meeting. Very happy with everything they’ve done for Jody. A lot of them we’re on a first name basis.
I’ve been helping out with Jody doing therapy (good learning session for me for when she gets home)
Looks like discharge day will be this Friday!!!
She’s not ready to be released, but like I mentioned, they won’t allow the Temodal at the care center. She will start those early next week and no therapy during the weekend so I feel this Friday is the best option.

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Jody and our daughter Ashlee (4/4/23)

4-4 TUES – Went to see Jody from at 8:45. They took her by bus to Bardmoor where they did the 1 month MRI followup. We’ll hear the results this Thursday.
Got her hospital bed. Both Ash and I went to get it in Largo. Found one for $100 with mattress. Works and looks great. Sure can’t beat that
Have a appoint with Shore Acres to figure out discharge day, in-home therapy and other related.

4-3 – MO Didn’t get much sleep last night. All I could think of is that it’s been a month since the end of radiation now, and she is still wheelchair bound, and still struggles to walk. She still can’t get out of the wheelchair by herself. I really didn’t expect this. Why…who knows. This can’t be from the tumor I would think since she really slowly declined the last week of radiation. She has to be discharged this week since next week she’ll be back on the chemo pills, and they don’t allow that in the care center.
Overall a decent day. 2 Therapy sessions. First one was in the morning, walking with a walker. She did good, but still can’t get up out of the wheelchair on her own. Second one was activities. I stayed outside to see how she would do without me being there. I heard she did decent.
Talked to the director again, and we talked about a release day…TH, FR, or even MON. I am thinking FR even though on TH she will be brought up to Bardmoor which is very near our house. Then to be taken back to Shore Acres.
But just that extra day will help me hopefully get a hospital be in the house.
Also need other things. Also have to get SSDI set up. I’ll do that later today or tomorrow. Appoitment tomorrow At Shore Acres. MRI today for Jody done at Bardmoor. Then followup appt at Bardmoor on Thursday. Busy!!

4-2 – SUN. Went to see Jody at 9. Was hoping to bring Jody home to watch the Rays game. Ash and family was to come over and I planned on smoking some chicken on the smoker. Jody got dressed in a Rays jersey. At 11:45, I wheeled her out to the car, and she was having a mental block to get into the Jeep. We tried for 20 minutes … it wasn’t happening. I wheeled her back to the room where I spend another ½ hour with her. I went ahead and just cancelled the afternoon. I was really looking forward to today. From a high to a super low. It wasn’t meant to be today.
She may only have 5-7 more days there since she’ll be back on the chemo pills. In these 5 days, I’m hoping the mental blocks and ‘resisting’ to get up or out of a wheel chair will subside some. Home care will only help so much.
These are VERY tough to see and to deal with.
Busy week this week with all the appointments to. I’m going to see if they can do therapy twice a day with her as I know time is limited with therapy help at the care center.

4-1 – SAT – Another great day for Jody. I got there about 9. We went out on the patio, then watched a movie in the activities room. Went back outside for a bit. I left about 2. Almost ate her whole meal. Definitley the most she’s eaten in a couple months. Also had 3 Boosts during the morning and early afternoon.

Busy week next week
Blood work on Monday for the oncologist at Florida Cancer Center
appoint on Tuesday for an MRI (Bardmoor)
appoint on Wed with Shore Acres Care Center
appoint on Thursday to discuss MRI results (Bardmoor)
appoint on Monday the 10th with oncologist on the Chemo pill plan (probably 5 a month)

Miscellaneous image gallery of pictures I’ve added in this section, on Facebook and elsewhere.