First Chemo Treatment 5/25

Had my first chemo treatment today.

I'm working with Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, one of the nation's top cancer hospitals. It was kind of nice doing this first treatment on Memorial Day, because street parking was free, and there wasn't much traffic. Once Catherine and I arrived, I was led to the 5th floor, and just sat down on a hospital bed while the nurse hooked me up to an IV and pumped me full of all kinds of chemicals.

It's called ABVD therapy, which stands for the four drugs that they use. They are all highly toxic, so the nurse has to wear hazmat clothing and gloves while administering the drugs. She said these drugs are very dangerous if they spill onto the skin, and can cause damaging burns. Not very comforting knowing that these same chemicals are being pumped into my bloodstream. It's poison, that can potentially cause damage to my nervous system, heart, and other organs, but with cancer growing inside me, I have no choice but to endure this and pummel the cancer into submission. The entire process took about four hours.

I feel okay right now. I was given a lot of anti-nausea meds at the start of the treatment. I'm told that I should be okay through dinner tonight. The nurse advised me not to eat my favorite meal tonight, because if I throw it up, I might not like it anymore.

Catherine was by my side the entire time, but they might not let her back in next time. She raided the patient's food fridge in the chemo ward and ate all of the string cheese. But I'm not telling anyone about that.


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  • 5/26/2009 9:47 PM Adrienne Graves wrote:
    Bill, you are so brave! Know that our whole family is praying for you, Catherine and the kids. Thanks for sharing this journey with us so we know how to pray and so that others are encouraged along the way! Like I said, you are brave! I'm so sorry you are walking this road...just know you are not walking it alone! And as for your string cheese eating wife, I won't tell anyone either...
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  • 5/27/2009 8:44 AM Pike Parker wrote:
    Good Luck Bill. I hope you get a chance to write on this blog and do your favorite job for years to come. May your treatment be swift and painless.

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  • 5/27/2009 9:43 AM Ellie Gates wrote:

    Wow! So sorry to hear this. I love Will's comforting words below. I know you are a fighter and a man of Great faith! We will surround you in prayer and pray that you will learn amazing things during this time that you never thought you would. Keep the faith! Fight on! We love you guys! Wish we were there to help. Let us know if you need ANYTHING!
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  • 5/27/2009 11:54 AM Jesse wrote:
    Hey Bill,

    I've been following and enjoying your tweets for a couple months now. Don't have a TV (weird personal choice) but have really enjoyed your musings 140 letters at a time. This came as a big unfortunate surprise. All I can say is that I'll be sure to keep you and your family in my wife and I's prayers. Hang in there Bill.
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  • 5/27/2009 12:05 PM Lori Anderson wrote:
    Wow. Words cannot express it. Wow. You and the rest of the Wixey clan are in my prayers. We know you can beat this! Like Will said, "At least it's not swine flu"!!
    Reply to this
  • 5/27/2009 12:52 PM josh b wrote:
    good luck Bill! my thoughts are with you and your family in this time of support.
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  • 5/27/2009 12:53 PM tricia moen wrote:
    Not sure if you remember me-but I worked at the Q for a long 6 months back in 2006-i was nights so our paths probably never crossed--
    I'm so sorry to hear you have the "c" word. It's not an easy thing to hear-but it sounds like you're on a good track- even though chemo sucks.
    I'm fighting the "c" word too-so if you need anything let me know- and if not-don't feel badly.
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  • 5/27/2009 1:06 PM Michael Bille wrote:

    I met you with Matthew at RTNDA-NAB in April. I just want you to know I'm thinking of you. A very good friend "caught" the same thing about 10 years ago. Went through the treatment, lost the hair, etc. But, he hasn't had a speck of "C" since. I know you are going to beat this.
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  • 5/27/2009 1:10 PM Guru Dorje wrote:
    Came across a tweet that was sending you out good vibes for your treatment. My father is a survivor of Acute Lymphatic Lymphoma (ALL) which was an odd cancer because it usually strickens caucasion children (he being neither a child nor caucasian). Dr. Petersdorf, a wonderful Oncologist at UW, noted that my father was the happiest cancer patient he ever met; he ate (cheetos puffs and root beer), he joked, and he visited the other patients in the ward (amazing that so many didn't have visitors-a woman with terminal brain cancer who lived in port townshend died alone).

    I asked my father about that time recently and he said when he could think about, worry, and help someone else even while he was sick, he was able to cope with the illness and pain.

    I know I am a stranger but if you need any cheering up, help, advice, anything-please don't hesitate.

    Be well my friend

    Guru Dorje
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  • 5/27/2009 1:14 PM Tammi S wrote:
    Hey Bill,
    I've watched you on air for quite some time so you've become a household face, as with most of us who watch Q13.
    Anyway, I pray that things go smoothly for you - as smooth as possible. One day at a time. <3
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  • 5/27/2009 1:23 PM Jeff Meltzer wrote:

    You followed me on Twitter about a month ago, and I did likewise. Will always enjoy reading your tweets, but they will from here on bring special meaning. I share your love of hockey.

    This too shall pass. Good luck,
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  • 5/27/2009 1:24 PM Val Lego wrote:
    I'm so sorry, but not surprised u r able to keep ur sense of humor even during your chemotherapy.

    I will think of you often and send positive thoughts your way, in hopes that Catherine and your kids will get to spend many more years with you.

    Keeping faith for you~

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  • 5/27/2009 1:32 PM cindy wrote:
    You have my surrport. all the best Cindy
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  • 5/27/2009 2:14 PM Dennis Bounds wrote:
    Just saw your post about cancer. My thoughts and prayers are with you in this fight. Be strong. Your friends and acquaintances are with you.
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  • 5/27/2009 3:38 PM sheryl thompson wrote:
    Hey Bill, good luck I know you'll beat it. I've been in remission for almost 2 years from Hodgkins stage 2. I had chemo for 6 months every 2 weeks then a month everyday of radiation. I know how you feel. The anti nausea meds didn't work for me but I hope they work for you. Seattle Cancer Care Alliance is great. They did my radiation treatment and Puget Sound Cancer center did my chemo. I was so terrified I was going to die for 2 weeks but then I knew I'd be ok. I know you will to. Hugs sheryl
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  • 5/27/2009 4:33 PM Connie wrote:
    My mom was on chemo she used plastic utensils because chemo makes food taste metallic. Maybe that will help you if you have that reaction. Take your vitamins!!
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  • 5/27/2009 5:59 PM Rich Lawrence wrote:
    Hi Bill,
    I know what you are going through. I have folicular lymphoma and have received chemotherapy. The drug will kick your butt and leave you weak, but you'll come back. You are young and strong with an active lifestyle. Hang in and stay positive. Everyone is pulling for you.
    Take care,
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  • 5/27/2009 7:28 PM lou wrote:
    you are a warrior and will beat this! our thoughts are with you and your family. can't wait to see you back on the ice next year for HC2010. lou
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  • 5/27/2009 7:42 PM NY Vinnie wrote:
    Sorry to hear about this bump in the road for you. You are a tough guy and I am sure you will not let this beat you and in the process touch other people that are in the same boat.
    I will keep thinking good thoughts for you and your family and hope to see you out at the ballyard soon!
    Hang in there!
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  • 5/27/2009 9:23 PM Ethan Harp wrote:
    Bill, Suzanne and I really enjoyed meeting and spending time with you and Catherine at RTNDA. We will, of course, join everyone in hoping (and EXPECTING) a speedy recovery. Look forward to seeing you next year in Las Vegas, if not sooner.

    Ethan Harp
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  • 5/28/2009 12:56 AM AnnieC wrote:
    Bill, I'm so very sorry about your diagnosis, but like previous posters before me, I'm glad to see you're keeping your sense of humor.

    Sending prayers and positive thoughts your way...
    Reply to this
  • 5/28/2009 1:36 AM Dan Horkey wrote:
    Bill, My prayers are with you and your family - Yes You Can
    Keep going my friend.
    Best wishes,

    Dan Horkey
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  • 5/28/2009 5:45 AM Sarah wrote:
    Dear Bill and Family have faith and be strong you will get through this. My family and I are praying for you. Be strong and thank you for the tweets to let us know how you are doing. So many caring people out there and every prayer helps. Best wishes to you and your family, Sarah
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  • 5/28/2009 7:55 AM Heavy wrote:
    Wix, good luck. We know you'll be back at the rink soon. Our thoughts are with you. Keep your stick on the ice. Hev & Claud
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  • 5/28/2009 7:57 AM Ione Evangeline wrote:
    Bill, I want you to know how sorry I am to hear of this medical challenge you're facing. You've shown us you're a valiant contender in so many ways and have contributed a great deal to our community. Now, we are all in your corner! Thank you for being so open and honest about what you're going through. Please post any needs you may have and know you have our love and support. I'll be praying for a speedy recovery and comfort for you and your delightful family.
    Reply to this
  • 5/28/2009 8:49 AM Gregg Hersholt wrote:
    Bill - Your honesty about this and your upbeat spirit are inspiring. You're in my thoughts and prayers. We morning guys have to stick together!
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  • 5/28/2009 9:28 AM Heidi Happonen wrote:

    Our family keeps you in our prayers. You WILL beat this. In the meanwhile, we'll keep following your updates via blog/twitter. Thank you for sharing.

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  • 5/28/2009 9:45 AM Tonya wrote:
    I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. You are lucky in that you have loved ones around you and some of the best cancer care centers in the world. You have already helped others by sharing your battle with all of us. I believe that with the support of family and friends and with your sense of humor you will defeat this disease.
    God Bless.
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  • 5/28/2009 5:49 PM Amy wrote:
    You and your family are in my prayers! I had a friend go through the same cancer years ago and is just fine living a normal life! Many blessings and let God carry your stress so you can get speed through this!
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  • 5/28/2009 9:45 PM Jeanine Wilcox wrote:
    Hi Bill- i just learned of your cancer and wanted to wish you well- we went to school together at Holy Family Kirkland i think you were the class behind me i was 1980, i enjoy watching you on tv and know that you will be just fine. My husband went through the same thing 13 years ago-next month we will be 12 years cancer free!!!!! the treatments they offer now are much better than years ago. Easy no i wont tell you that it will be easy but i truly know and believe that with a good attitude and support system you will be just fine-attitude is EVERYTHING!!!! and my husband never lost a strand of hair , he had the same treatment as you ABVD, with chemo and radiation. Take one day at a time and dont be afraid to take it easy when you need to. I wish you better health and happiness always-i will see if you add me to your FB page-take care -Jeanine Miller Wilcox
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  • 5/28/2009 9:57 PM Cynthia Becker wrote:
    Bill - my only nephew passed away 4 years ago from a very rare form of cancer at age 40. My sister and I learned of the Cancer Treatment Centers of America ( Good resource- 98% success rate - they work with a hospital on 9th Ave in Seattle. I can only hope the treatments given will be successful for you. My mom and I love you and send our best wishes. Cancer runs big time in our family (my dad passed away in '96). We are pulling for you, dear heart!
    Cynthia & Emily Becker
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  • 5/28/2009 10:04 PM Shanan wrote:
    I am so thankful that you are opening up to world about your hiccup in life!! We can all learn from your tremendous bravery. I know that you probably wish that you could just wiggle your nose and have it all go away, but you are handling it with your head held high!! BRAVO!! And Bravo to your wife, because she is really the unsung hero!!
    Reply to this
  • 5/29/2009 9:30 AM Ranay wrote:
    I love you, Bill! You can do this. When my mother was going through her chemo treatments, I must admit - I was definitely guilty of raiding the free food closet on a few occasions.
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  • 5/29/2009 11:44 AM Marty wrote:
    Fellow Hodge survivor here - Stage 4 for me, was going through what you are now a year ago. Stay strong, find the humor in the absurdity of all that is ABVD, seems scary & bizarre now... but you'll worship the stuff after it saves your life.

    Have your kids shave your head when the time is right, and make the while journey what YOU want it to be!
    Reply to this
  • 5/29/2009 9:39 PM Carrie wrote:
    I've been thinking of you since I heard the news and then was directed to your blog

    It's a club we didn't want to join (really me??) but were forced to face - it is here you will find compassion, support, friendships and understanding

    So get ready to fight, laugh, and cry - all in about five minutes or all at once (if you haven't already) - such is the cancer roller coaster

    Reply to this
  • 5/30/2009 12:48 AM Steve P wrote:
    Hey Bill,

    Sorry to hear about your battle with cancer -- you are in my prayers. My grandfather died of cancer when I was 2, My grandmother died of cancer when I was 13, and back then they had no treatment for it. My mother had cancer 15 years ago but only had to have surgery, no chemo. Her cancer was sitting inside her like a round stone -- they were able to remove it all and she's been cancer-free since! Prayer makes a difference!

    They have come such a long, long way with cancer treatment and I'm amazed at what can be done now. It's great that you're talking about this so publicly -- you are a huge encouragement to so many others! Thanks!

    It's also wonderful to read all the posts from your fans and the encouragement they give. You have a multitude of support and encouragement.

    You are in my prayers. May you find peace while you go through this, comfort, reassurance, hope, and encouragement.

    God bless,

    Reply to this
  • 5/30/2009 7:41 AM Dawn wrote:
    Just wanted to share I had exactly the same cancer going on 9 years ago in August! It was in my neck and a little detected on my lung. All gone with chemo treatment but I did radiation just to make sure after that.
    A great help I found to help with my energy...A naturalpath who with my doctor and blood work prescribed me vitamins to boost my energy and to keep me going. It really worked. I never was sick or nausea came about during my treatment . The radiation was the hardest on me though, everyday and the burns on my neck were intense and painful but I made it through! I journal ed through my whole experience also and it helped me alot to write my emotions and feelings down!
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