Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Michael's With Mickey

After 5 long days of travel and no internet capabilities, we have finally landed the RV at Fort Wilderness Campground at Disney in Florida. I must say it was not an easy journey getting here. The kids and I left last Thursday morning with the RV and trailer with bikes in-tow and headed to Mayo to try and bail Michael out of the Hospital for a little R&R. Michael's blood infection is doing well and we think we found the source. On CT he was found to have a liver abscess (infection) from an old ablation site measuring about 6 cm. They then placed a tube into the liver to drain the abscess, which now puts him up to 5 tubes and drains. He has to flush his liver 3 times a day, no not with beer, with saline although he has been tempted. While finding the abscess they also found 3 areas of recurrence of cancer off of the previous ablation sites. He will have surgery a week from now back at Mayo on the liver. Hopefully, if all goes well, he will only be in the hospital for a few days and head back to Gaylord. The Doctors all thought it would be good for Michael to get away for a week to forget about hospitals. His antibiotics are being shipped to the campground here at Disney by UPS and I give them to him daily. Our RV is like a little hospital on wheels, fully stocked with all the supplies Michael needs or could possibly need. Internet has been a royal pain in the butt, just like the drain that Michael has in his butt. It took Yukon, my 11 y/o son to finally find us access. I tried updating the blog on my i-phone and that didn't go to well. The tube in Michael's liver has really put a damper on his mobility. Athletes for a Cure has provided a golf cart down here for Michael to get around and to be able to keep track of the kids on race day. Winter is training hard in the early morning heat to aclimate to the high humidity. She will do the kids race on Saturday with her brothers (1 mile run- 6mile bike- 1 mile run) and will be the "featured athlete" on Sundays big race with a 1,000 other competitors. She will swim- .9miles, bike 24 miles and run 6.2 miles. Some pro triathletes will be on hand to lend her support. Winter's only concern about the whole race is "ALLIGATORS". She has already touched base with pest control asking them to get the gators out of the swim course! She was assured that she will be well protected. She also has heard of some large snakes (poisonous water moccasins) seen around the campground which should make her run splint darn fast.
Michael is finding all the shade possible to keep his head from sweating and getting sun burnt. A friend graciously gave him a Greenbay Packers hat which is working well.

Hopefully, we will keep everyone a little more updated over the next week, if internet doesn't fail us. Right now I have to sit outside in one particular spot to get connection.

We Are Holding Up Well,
Dawn, Michael & Kids


The Zelaskos said...

Go WINTER!!! What an amazing journey. You are all an inspiration to us. We hope you enjoy your visit to Disney. We will continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers.

John and Pam

the parental unit said...

Winter, you're AMAZING! You got the best of both genes! OMG, what did that leave your dad with!?!?! hehe...seriously though, I hope you guys have a great time down there and do well with your races.

Michael, we're still keeping you in our prayers for recovery, God can do great things! Enjoy your break from the hospital.

Dawn, I still think you're amazing!
Take Care!
Lyne :)

Matt Thornton said...

Winter- Hope you do well in the race. We already know you are a winner!

Dawn- Thanks for the update.

Michael- While your there, you might try to contact Don Shearer. I think you met him at one of the MSAA conventions. He may be able to arrange a behind the scenes tour of Disney for you. Would be a real treat for all of you if it works out.

Sorry to hear that more surgery is needed :-(. On the plus side, at least they found the cause of the infection, and the new growths early on.

Watch out for the sun~ won't take long to burn with no hair! But then, it might compliment the pink toenails :-)

Stay strong & keep up the fight. Take care & have a safe trip.


mrmtdew said...

hey, Michael, take care buddy. Keep your phone on cuz I'll still be in Minnesota when you come back and I'll come by to visit you if you're feeling up for it.

Matt and Kerrie said...

You guys are true fighters. What amazing things you've all overcome. Good luck Winter in your race!!! Keep the faith and god will do good things. Stay strong and live life to the fullest.

The Daenzer family. (Hunter delivered 13 months ago by the best OB around.)

heidimw said...

Good luck to everyone in their races! Please keep us informed on how the weekend went...cannot wait to hear about everything!

Enjoy each other...have fun...lots of laughter...and absorb this special moment together as a family. Take lots of pictures, we would love to see them! HAVE to get Mickey Mouse ears! That would certainly cover up your head, and look rather cute too!

Have fun guys!!!

James, Karri, JD & Jarrett said...

Hope you are all having a great time...wish we were there!! We are rooting for you from Michigan and can't wait to hear about your weekend. Good luck Winter, Yukon, Mag & Ruger are all winners!!
We love you guys and hope to see you soon...
James, Karri, JD & Jarrett

tanya Dandeneau said...

Hey gang-
Good luck and have a relaxing time together down on Fl. Have a safe trip and let us know how things went.
Miss you guys.
Michael- keep the smile and keep in touch.

Bobby, Anna, Bowdy, Bailey and Tucker said...

Hi Guys!
After 8 days without power at the house and 10 days of camping out with 3 different families, we are back up and running. Ok, we are raking and hauling brush and fences for exercise instead of running. Thank you Hurricane Ike for otherwise sparing us (our thoughts are with those who weren't so lucky). I hope you all had a wonderful time in Orlando. I was thinking of you all weekend long. Stop by this way if you have an extra few days - I promie to have the pool not so green by Wednesday!

Love to you all,
Anna (Bobby, Bowdy, Bailey and Tucker

PS. Michael - Love that beautiful head of yours! Dad has always said bald is sexy!

Becky said...


All of you are winners...

Keep Smilin'


shezabelle said...

Obviously Winter's activites, in addition to supporting her dad, have had an effect on the Weather Fairies. It has been dry and (partially) sunny for about a week! (I guess I've turned Irish cuz all they do is talk about the weather and that's all I do too!) Hope the day wasn't too humid yesterday and that all went well with you guys! Later today, I start Irish class so, hopefully, next week, I'll have a few Irish phrases to throw around. Until then 'pog ma thon'...'kiss my arse'!! That's all I know! Hoping to learn something more refined by the next time I write you! Enjoy the sun! And have a great time! Good luck with the surgery! xxx, Shelley

Sporty Chick said...

I competed yesterday at the race, and my 9 and 11 year old daughters were amazed that Winter was tackling an olympic distance. I was hoping to meet you all at the awards ceremony (I placed in the female category) but had to zoom back to jacksonville for a class for my daughter.

Your story and your efforts have touched me greatly. Watching somneone you love battle cancer is an unbelievably draining roller coaster ride. Your family spirit and love and energy is truly inspirational. Hope to see you all next year at the 2nd annual race ;-)

Best wishes.
Sara DiPaolo
Jacksonville, FL

Michelle said...

What a fight! What an inspiration you all are! Go Winter! Enjoy the sunshine Michael and family! You are in our thoughts and prayers daily!

Linda said...

We camped at Fort Wilderness when the kids were little. We had an armadillo that hung around our camper all the time. You guys must be so proud of Winter. I miss you. Drive carefully. See you soon.

jan said...

Micahel, Dawn and family:

Thank you for all the information on Winter's race and all that you have accomplished with Team Winter to fight this aweful disease. Your family is inspiration for all of us. I hope we will get some information about Michael's surgery yesterday real soon. Has he gotten some relief from the discomfort and pain? These past few weeks have been very difficult for all of you. You are in my thoughts and prayers daily. I know how difficult it must be to do all that you are doing right now. If I can help with the updates, please let me know. Jan