RFA Scheduled for 12/4/12

The RFA (Radiofrequency Ablation ) to treat the lesions on my liver has been scheduled for next Tuesday, 12/4/12. The procedure will consist of me being placed in an MRI machine (while under general anesthesia) at which time the radiologist will use a needle like probe to ablate the minuscule spots. My oncologist and myself are very confident that the treatment will be successful. After all, I have far more to gain than to lose. The only possible deterrents are liver damage and infection; both of which seem to be rare per the doctor.  Emory performs hundreds of RFA’s per year. I will go to Emory for pre-op meetings on Monday and then report to the hospital Tuesday morning at 7am. I will have the procedure done and then will stay in the hospital overnight for observation. As of now, I should be released Wednesday afternoon and may be mildly sore for a few days. You can read more about the RFA here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiofrequency_ablation

Thank you again for your constant support and best wishes, I am so grateful that I have the best friends and family that anyone could ever ask for.

With love,



“He who becomes the slave of habit, who follows the same routes every day, who never changes pace, who does not risk and change the color of his clothes, who does not speak and does not experience, dies slowly.

He or she who shuns passion, who prefers black on white, dotting ones i’s rather than a bundle of emotions, the kind that make your eyes glimmer, that turn a yawn into a smile, that make the heart pound in the face of mistakes and feelings, dies slowly.

He or she who does not turn things topsy-turvy, who is unhappy at work, who does not risk certainty for uncertainty, to thus follow a dream, those who do not forego sound advice at least once in their lives, die slowly.

He who does not travel, who does not read, who does not listen to music, who does not find grace in himself, she who does not find grace in herself, dies slowly.

He who slowly destroys his own self-esteem, who does not allow himself to be helped, who spends days on end complaining about his own bad luck, about the rain that never stops, dies slowly.

He or she who abandons a project before starting it, who fails to ask questions on subjects he doesn’t know,  he or she who doesn’t reply when they are asked something they do know, dies slowly.

Let’s try and avoid death in small doses, reminding oneself that being alive requires an effort  far greater than the simple fact of breathing.

Only a burning patience will lead to the attainment of a splendid happiness.”

– Pablo Neruda


The Rybert and Parker Families

I want to send both the Rybert’s and the Parker’s a massive thank you for the incredible gesture of installing a cross with my name on it in Lithuania. The sacred “Hill of Crosses” is a site of pilgrimage in northern Lithuania where an estimated 125,000 crosses reside. Over the years, the site has been a symbol for peace, hope, love, and sacrifice.

I am truly honored!!





It’s a MARATHON, not a sprint! 11.6.12

This morning we had an appointment with Dr. Kauh (my oncologist @ Emory) to discuss the results from last week’s MRI and CT Scan. According to him, the primary tumor at my GE junction and the spots on my liver have stabilized. This is great news, given the fact that they have not spread. I was hoping for a little more progress (from a reduction standpoint) on the liver lesions but, I cannot complain. At this point, Dr. Kauh is speaking with his team about performing an Ablation (This procedure uses high-frequency electric current to heat and destroy the cancer cells) on my liver to remove the minuscule spots. Again, having the liver completely clean is critical before any surgery is tabled. We should know more on this procedure in weeks to come. In the meantime, Dr. Kauh ordered that I start another four rounds of chemo therapy and we will have another set of scans for progress in 8 weeks. Dr. Kauh has also decided to remove the Oxaliplatin from my chemo regiment because of the neuropathy in my hands. The neuropathy is a common side effect from any of the platinum based chemo therapy treatments; it is very annoying but is well worth the cost of living! By removing this from my regiment, my infusions should only last about 5 hours instead of 6.

Emory has partnered with St. Joseph’s, so I have scheduled the majority of my future treatments there since it is much closer to home. My schedule is as follows:

-Infusion@ St. Joe’s on 11/7/12
-Infusion @ St. Joe’s on 11/19/12
-Infusion @ St. Joe’s on 12/3/12
-Infusion @ St. Joe’s on 12/17/12

Thank you for the continued support and love,


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