out with the old, and in with the new

Well, 2004 is already shaping up to be an interesting year. We just found out today that my insane brother does indeed have Chronic Myelogenous/Myeloid Leukemia. He went in for an introductory meeting with his new doctor last month, and they did a routine blood test. The results came back wonky, so they did another one, and the results were even stranger. Then came the bone marrow biopsy, and the news today that confirmed the disease. Luckily, it is in a very early stage, and there is a new drug, Gleevec, that is supposed to be very effective (but it makes you barfy and puffs up your body with edema. Oh, and it costs $2,000 per month). It’s not a very fun way to end a year or start a new one!
Hope everyone has a nice New Year! Remember to eat more chocolate and to stay hydrated!

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23 Responses to out with the old, and in with the new

  1. Dawnya says:

    Mariko,
    My thoughts are with your family at this time.
    Chocolate truly is solstice for the soul.
    Dawnya in MN

  2. kerrie says:

    Oh Mariko – what horrible news to get on the last day of the year. I hope things improve greatly in 2004 for your brother, I’ll keep you all in my thoughts.
    Eat more chocolate and stay hydrated – who could ask for more!!!

  3. Jessica says:

    Mariko,
    I’m so sorry to hear about your brother. Here’s hoping that 2004 brings health and happiness to you and your family.
    Hugs.

  4. Jennifer says:

    Sorry to hear about your brother, Mariko. Wishing you and your family all the best.

  5. Lizzi says:

    It always happens around the holidays, doesn’t it? My brother had a brain tumor removed about a week and a half before Christmas, two years ago. He’s still with us, doing just fine, and I wish your brother all the same luck in dealing with this.

  6. Meg says:

    Oh, dear Mariko! I’ll be praying for your “insane brother”. I can only imagine – I love my slightly-odd male sibling like crazy. My best wishes to you & yours for a prosperous, healthy New Year. Hope bro doesn’t sober up *too* much – less sane is more fun, eh?

  7. Kitty says:

    Holey moley I can’t believe it – this really sucks. I’ll send good vibes to you and your brother and your family.

  8. Emma says:

    Wishing you and your family,especially your brother,all the very best for 2004.

  9. Susan says:

    Wow, Mariko, so sorry to hear about your insane brother. That is really rough. Hang in there, all of you!

  10. Silvia says:

    I’m sorry to hear that about insane brother. Although those side effects sound yucky, at least there’s a good treatment. We’ll keep sending him good karma, and of course to you too! Chocolate couldn’t hurt either.

  11. claudia says:

    Mariko, that bites. Sorry to hear it. Loan insane brother some Super Eggplant Attitude?

  12. Taya says:

    Marge – I am so sorry! Poor Sash. I was hoping they were mistaken and yesterday’s test would show something better. All of the Slabs are thinking of you guys.

  13. June says:

    What a way to start the year! Glad there are viable (tho costly) treatment options. I hope insane brother and Gleevac can kick the leukemia’s butt! Hang in there! Gambatte kudasai!

  14. Marcia says:

    What a scary way to start the year. My thought for you and IB: By the end of 2004, this will be so far behind you all, it’ll be nothing more than nearly forgotten.

  15. Cari says:

    Oh no! I’m sending good, healthy thoughts and my dogs are sending good, healthy butt wiggles.

  16. alison says:

    Wow, that sucks. I came over here to wish you a happy new year, and now I’ll add my best wishes for your insane brother to that. May 2004 only get better from here! xo

  17. Melissa says:

    Mariko, I am sorry to read the news about your brother.

  18. karen says:

    Well, here’s the good news: isn’t it great to be living at a time when we can actually DO something to TREAT stuff like this? My ancestors lost many siblings to diabetes – something that’s very treatable today. And think of all the women that died in childbirth even as recently as a century ago. I will keep good thoughts going for your Insane Brother. And for you, too. Peace to you all in this new year.

  19. Amy in BC says:

    Your brother looks waaaaay too young and healthy to be sick. All the best to him and glad they caught it early… $2,000 a month?? Ouch. Keep us informed and be nice to him for us will you? :)

  20. Theresa says:

    Mariko — Happy New Year to you and your family. My heart goes out to you and your brother. Before I added the keyboard part to the biologist, I was a research immunologist. I’ve been out for a little while, but if I can help you find any info or anything like that, please let me know!

  21. carolyn says:

    well that really SUCKS dude. but from all your descriptions of him in the past, i’d say he’s not about to let them bring that down. he’ll whip that disease right into shape!!! and look at it this way — he’s starting the year as far down as you can go – nowhere to go but up to better!! now what’re you going to put on his t-shirt? :)

  22. Kerstin says:

    Oh, Mariko. My heart goes out to you and your family. There’s just too much cancer EVERYWHERE. Insane brother should take Gleevec, no matter what it costs. My Peter has some knowledge of leukemia drugs (his last business and his aunt had leukemia, too) and says the effectiveness of Gleevec is very promising. Hang in there, lady. Best wishes to bro, too!

  23. Allison says:

    Wow! That is horrible news but at least it was caught in the early stages. Hopefully modern medicine can kick that cancers butt! You should still have a Happy New Year!

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