Yes - I have been slack and this update is somewhat overdue.
After 6 rounds of chemo the tumor has disappeared and all that is left is 7mm of dead tissue (it was 12cm).. As a precaution or as best practice, the specialist wants to remove this remaining tissue using radiation treatment. I'm off to see the radiation oncology specialist today for my 1st appointment and treatment will go ahead in 10 days time, spread out over a couple of days.
The good news is that there have been no surprises in the treatment process sofar- everything has progressed just as the hematology specialist said it would. After the radiation treatment i'll technically be in remission, a very unscientific term describing what is really a waiting game to see if the cancer reappears. Statistically my chances are good that there will be no reoccurrence in next 5 years (the remission period) after which I will technically be 'cured'. I will need to haves a number of followup scans over the course of the next year or two, this monitoring will gradually phase out over time.
Apart from the radiation treatment and the much anticipated regrowth of the body hair just in time for the NZ winter, life is rapidly returning to a form of normality. I've started back at the gym (slowly), my new diet starts tomorrow:) and I'm booked in for the Auckland marathon in October. This whole journey started with the Auckland marathon and it would be good goal to finish the year with a new PB in one of those shirts ofcourse. We also have our house renovations due to start in the next two weeks (its only been 12 years in the waiting) and have a great family holiday adventure booked to the Gold Coast in July.
So health summary.. its way too early to celebrate, I still need to take this one step at a time but everything is certainly looking positive. I think my birthday this year will have to be a big one :)