Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Hi Everyone!

Dallas has completed his second round of chemo and will receive his second batch of stem cells today. This time around has been harder on him. He's experienced daily bouts of nausea, doesn't have much of an appetite, and sleeps quite a bit. These side effects will lessen soon and I know he'll be feeling much better by the weekend.

He should be released to the hotel tomorrow (Thursday). He's anxious to get out of here for awhile! His spirits are still good and he jokes alot (between naps).

More later.


Monday, January 15, 2007

Championship Hoopla

It's been awhile since I'm updated Dallas' blog and I apologize for the delay. We've been busy!

Dallas is doing great! His blood counts are back on the rise which is a good indication that his stem cell transplant is taking hold. Last Thursday he had to have a platelet transfusion and will have another one tomorrow. He's eating well, sleeping well, riding the exercise bike in the hotel workout room, and in great spirits. We've been to a couple of movies; We Are Marshall (great!) and Night at the Museum (so-so). He's also been to two Gator basketball games.

His biggest thrill has most definitely been all the hoopla going on here in Hogtown associated with the Gator National Championship win. The night of the game both of my brothers came up from Orlando and Larry came from Tally to watch the game with Dallas. After the win, they all wanted to go down to University Avenue to join in the celebration so I dropped them off and they walked down to the stadium. The traffic was bumper to bumper and horns were blaring. University Avenue was blocked off, just as they do on Tennessee Street in Tallahassee. It was wall-to-wall people and lots of excitement!

The next night (Tuesday) the Gator basketball team played Arkansas and it was rumored the football team would arrive home from Arizona and make a surprise showing at halftime. Needless to say, Dallas wanted to go to that we did and the championship team showed up as planned.

Saturday was the championship celebration at the stadium. After spending the morning at the hospital getting his blood count checked, Dallas' met up with Larry and my brother Jim and headed to the stadium. Dwayne Thomas met them at the south end-zone and took them down to the weight room where Dallas had his picture taken with Chris Leak. He brought his Sports Illustrated commemorative issue with him and was able to get Andrew Caldwell, Jarvis Moss, Percy Harvin and Chris Leak's autographs.

Then finally, on Sunday, Dallas ran into the Gator place kicker, Chris Hetland, at the GatorFever souvenir tent and got his autograph as well.

As you can imagine, Dallas has really enjoyed all the events. We're all very grateful too that Dwayne was able to take the time to meet with Dallas and get him behind the scenes. What an experience!

Since Dallas is doing so well, the doctor's have stepped-up his treatment schedule. Orginially, he was to be given his chemo in 3-28 days cycles. The doctor's have now decided on 3-21 day cycles. Dallas is scheduled to start his 2nd cycle on Friday, January 18. Dallas and I are disappointed that we won't be able to come home for a week as planned earlier, but we're both happy the treatment will end sooner. Dallas will have to stay in the hospital again for the 6 days of his treatment and then will be released to the hotel we're staying at.

As soon as I can arrange to download some of the pictures we've taken, I'll post them for all to enjoy.

Everyone is great here. All the doctor's and nurses; the hotel staff; everywhere we go.....the people are so kind and caring. Life is good....God is great!



Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Happy New Year!

We hope everyone enjoyed bringing in the New Year! Dallas, Brittney, Larry and I spent the evening in Dallas' room in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit at Shands. We laughed and giggled until our sides hurt while playing Uno and listening to music blaring from his new Ipod speaker he received for Christmas. It was a great New Year's eve. Brittney and Dallas shared a bottle of sparkling grape juice at midnight while watching the ball drop at Times Square.

Dallas has completed his first round of chemotherapy and will receive his stem cells tomorrow morning. He's doing well and has experienced the normal side effects expected from the strong regimen of drugs he's received. His sense of smell has been adversly effected making most foods intolerable to him and consequently his appetite is poor. One of the side effects of thiotepa(chemo) is the drug leaves his body through his pores which requires frequent bathing. As a result, his biggest complaint is the showers and complete change of clothes he has to make every six hours! The boy has never been so clean!

After his stem cell infusion, Dallas will stay in the hospital another night and hopefully be released on Thursday. We've found a nice, lake-view, motel near Shands to spend the next two weeks. During that time Dallas will make frequent trips to the hospital so that his blood counts can be monitored closely. He'll probably require a few transfusions until his stem cells kick in and his counts rebound. Then, we'll get to come home for a week before his next round of treatment starts.

All and all, we're doing fine. Dallas' spirits are good and thankfully there's been plenty of football on TV to keep him occupied.

Here's wishing everyone a healthy and joyful 2007!