~ Poems of Love ~

The following poems have been written by me, for my husband Hamada, who suffered from Multiple Myeloma [IgG Kappa] a cancer of the plasma cells, which are found in the bone marrow. After many months of chemotherapy, contracting pneumonia twice, once given only twelve hours to live and having three bad fractures to his spine and also showing in his Pelvis, he made it to four years seven months. The Multiple Myeloma attacked his Kidneys first showing at diagnosis in May 2006 leaving Hamada only a small percentage of kidney function. He never complained, using his most amazing smile even when I knew he had severe pain. Hamada underwent a Stem Cell Transplant using his own 'harvested stem cells' . During October 2007 he spent seventeen days in the "Centre For Clinical Haematology" at Nottingham City Hospital UK. where he achieved this transplant. We had a scare at six months after transplant, when told 'the beast was back' but subsequent tests showed a partial remission. Again in early 2009 it was confirmed that Hamada was out of remission He fought again during 2010 with newer chemo type drugs. First with Velcade and then with Revlimid but to no avail. His Kidneys were failing further and Hamada chose not to have dialysis. This blog contains poems and updates, written for Hamada, telling of our life together.
Now a beautiful book has been published, see http://www.susiehemingway.com/books/
showing Hamada's personal fight against Multiple Myeloma in the first fifty 'poems of love' written by me his wife. I hope you like these poems of love and also 'our story' dedicated to Hamada, who passed away peacefully at home on 23 November 2010 after a most courageous fight against Multiple Myeloma.

23 August, 2010

We Pretend - by Susie Hemingway

Do we pretend dear one?
As judgements are made and disclosed
In fretful haze we nuzzle closer
To mirror the fears that we know
Do we pretend dear one?
As smiles and platitudes wither my heart
Perhaps we do, as we dream anew
Of positive days that will last.

We laugh as we follow regimes
But I'm frightened of this new terrain
Praying, dreaming and hoping
That this time there will be some gain.
Still in the consuming darkness
When sleep will just not come
I hear you fretful in slumber
Are we pretending dear one?

As in the yellowing dawn light
My heart pushes down the pain
I think of all the others fighting a similar game,
I think of how far we've all come
Such bravery that cuts through this bane
To push down this 'Wicked Beast',
And make positive steps to gain.

No! I don't think we're pretending
Not in the very least
I'm proud of my Warrior
Who struggles through, with steely belief
Proud of my friends who daily defend
Giving him cause to go on,
And yes of course I know we can make it
We've really no need to pretend,
We've really no need to pretend.

13 August, 2010

A Short Update.

After a rather long visit with Hamada's consultant at Lincoln yesterday it was a general consensus between us that Hamada would start Revlimid today and the consent forms were duly signed. His HB and Platelets readings were a little better but Para Protein continues to rise.

His monthly regime is as follows:
Lenalidomide ( Revlimid) 15mg every other day. For 21 days - weeks rest.
Dexamethasone 2mg x10 on two days per week for three weeks - weeks rest.
Aspirin 75mg Daily
Allopurinol 100 mg Daily - which is already prescribed in maintenance tablets.
Lansoprazole 30mg - which is already prescribed in maintenance tablets.
Filgrastim Injections 300Micrograms/0.5ml on three days per week.

Hamada is to have weekly blood tests every Thursday at Lincoln and I will ring in the afternoon to check readings and then this will ensure that bloods are carefully monitored and extra platelets or treatments can be received on the Friday should they be needed.
I know you all join me in wishing Hamada all the luck in the world that this treatment will be the one to help reduce the Myeloma burden and thus give him more time with us.

Rose Photo: "Cleopatra" from my garden.

09 August, 2010

A Little Does You Good.?

Perhaps we are doing something that is completely frowned upon by the medical profession but just as the last of the Chemo free days are here, a few real treats have been in order. The photo above shows Hamada with a Guinness Beer, certainly not allowed during Chemotherapy but as he approaches the Revlimid regime the last of this particular treat at least for a while, was much enjoyed. ( Sorry Consultants but we are taking a chance, quality of life and all that )

I think you will agree that Hamada looks well indeed. I wanted to show this photo to give other MM sufferers further courage, that although you can go through some terribly low moments and awful medical problems to solve and Hamada has had all those believe me. Remember Velcade failed for him and now with a 20+ M-Spike. he is to try yet again to reduce this.

Hamada had a Stem Cell Transplant 2 Years 9 months ago and was diagnosed with MM in 2006. He does have difficulty walking and needs help with many things especially getting up from a chair and although not caring for noisy gatherings, he has manged a number of quiet meals out and one or two smaller social occasions during the past few few weeks.

It has been a good Summer for us both with no big problems to cope with and how wonderful that Hamada still has the courage and the will to continue this battle. Best wishes to all making this same journey.

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