Friday, 22 June 2012


Per·se·ver·ance is defined as steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement. There is no doubt that Apis’ ability to persevere is really astounding, especially as she continues to face obstacles each day.

Yesterday was yet another difficult day. Her nutritional supplement was removed and both her antibiotic and pain medication continued to be given orally.  She was not able to take any anti-nausea medication other than gravol as the doctors wanted to see if it would stay under control – it didn’t.  Most of the nausea comes from the chemotherapy drugs which were injected right into her system... and which are hard for the body to process. It seems that very few medications are able to control it or minimize its effects.

She spent most of the day vomiting, with stomach pain and crazy bowel movements.  Still, she got up and continued with her walks, the breathing exercises and trying to eat as much as she could (every spoonful counts, every step taken will help her get out of the hospital faster). I watched her get up (as she was about to cry from all the pain and discomfort) to go to the bathroom to get cleaned up as she was expecting a friend later in the afternoon and wanted to look presentable and wear her new gown... a pink gown with flowers that made her feel prettier and more ‘human.’ Unfortunately, a vomiting spree did not allow her to see her dear friend (this was the second visit she had to cancel this week).

Towards the end of the evening the nurses suspected she might be getting a stomach bug and ordered some additional lab work. The doctor finally hooked her IV back in the evening and gave her all the regular medication (nutritional supplements, pain medicine, antibiotics and anti-nausea) but she was worn out, exhausted and feeling a bit lost and emotional – she misses Chris and Aiden and she is still trying to digest what has happened in the last few months. Her hormones are also out of control  after she lost both her ovaries.

She wants us to keep you guys updated on the good, the bad and the ugly. This is a long process full of surprises and bumps along the road. Yet, regardless of how difficult things can get, she’s still moving forward and she has her eyes on the ‘prize’ which is recovery and many, many more years with her friends and family. She is also extremely thankful to be here and to be getting this treatment that many PMP sufferers don’t have access to. Please take a look to see her touching article which has been featured on the online edition of Maclean’s Magazine as she continues to inspire us:


  1. I can't wait to see you tomorrow, I am so excited and happy to be able to be by her side. It's amazing, the fragility of the human body but the untouchable strength of the spirit and the mind to overcome it. I am so proud of you Ayapeyas.

  2. Dear Apis,
    Get Well Soon!

  3. It sounds like climbing one of the fourteeners here in Colorado. I've never done it myself, but it takes the kind of perseverance and strength that you have m'dear Apis. So much love for you for being this amazing despite the bad days. I will be praying for more good days than bad, and for you to feel more like yourself. Being emotional is completely understandable and expected, you've been through so much! Keep your chin up, darling. Sending love always.

    Thanks again to her family also for keeping us updated, good and bad. I know it's difficult, but we appreciate knowing what's going on because we can't be there in person. Love to all of you as well.

  4. It continues to astound me how Apis doesn't seem to need to be reminded that she is making progress each day, regardless of how difficult that day has been overall. I am glad to hear she has her IV back, so she can rest and concentrate on her exercises while the medication manages her pain and nausea a little better for her.

    I think we're all grateful and humbled to be able to be there with her, even if just in spirit, for each step of the way.

    Keep it up, Apis! You are such an inspiration.

  5. Gosh... Apis is definitely going through the wringer but she keeps pushing onward! Good for her! I'm sure eventually the doctors will find a good balance of medications and painkillers for her... just don't let them dismiss any concerns. None. That happens far too often in the states and I don't know what it's like for Canadians, but always push for answers. Always.

    But I'm puzzled about her losing both ovaries. Did she have a total hysterectomy or... just a partial? Or what? I seemed to have missed that or misunderstood....

    Keep going, Apis. I'm sure you'll be reunited with family soon enough. I am certain many other PMPers will appreciate this documentation... and her great spirit.

  6. Esther - I believe she had the right ovary removed with the appendix and then the other in the MOAS. That would cause the instant menopause. I've been doing it the slow way (for about ten years now) and can only imagine the turmoil that total hormone crash causes!

    Apis, hang in there. It will get better! it really will. In the meantime, you are allowed to cry if you wish, nobody will think the worse of you. Not one bit.

    You're a total inspiration. :)


  7. Hi Apis-
    I hope today has brought you less nausea and diarrhea. In my opinion that was the worst part of the whole process. It will get better, although at a much slower rate than you would like. I try to explain to people that the sickness I experienced is nothing you could imagine unless you have gone through it. It unfortunately is part of surviving this horrible disease. Things do get better! I know you are not up for visitors and that is completely okay, we can get together when you are up to it. I can't imagine how much you are missing Chris right now and I hope him arriving will lift your spirits. We will be at the hospital on Tuesday if you need anything at all! Sending you lots of healing thoughts!