We’re Almost Finished!

Let The Countdown Begin!

If everything goes as planned, we will finish chemotherapy on December 23rd!

Hey everybody!  We just finished our 13th round of chemotherapy!  We had a successful two days of treatment and we’re thrilled to be finished with another round.  With the completion of each round comes a bigger smile, so you can imagine, our smiles are pretty big at this point.  It sounds awful to wish time away, but when faced with a rigorous treatment schedule and being so sick so often, we can’t help but wish the days away.  We only have one more round to go!  Sam’s last round of chemotherapy is scheduled for December 19th-December 23rd.  Because we are nearing the end of this part of the adventure, Sam and I took some time this week to figure out what we’ve been through this past year.

Sam was diagnosed with a malignant bone cancer 232 days ago.  Since then, we’ve had 105 scheduled appointments.  He has had 13 rounds of chemotherapy.  He has had 3 surgeries.  He’s had to get lab work done 58 times.  He has gone to the infusion center for treatment 46 times.  We’ve spent 10 nights in hospital rooms.  I’ve had the unfortunate duty of giving him 78 shots and will give him 10 more before this thing is through.  And finally, we hope to be on the beach in 42 days.

This journey has been grueling and incredible.  In fourteen days, we’ll finally breathe a sigh of relief.  We both fully understand that this particular cancer doesn’t have an expiration date.  There will always be a chance of the cancer coming back, but we’ll worry about that if it happens.  We’ve done all that we can do and we believe that the cancer will never return.  There’s no way we’ll ever be normal again, but in two weeks, we’ll begin to be more hopeful and happier than we’ve been in 232 days.  Normal is boring anyway.

Throughout these last several months, we’ve learned that family and friends are all that we need in life and we will never take a day in good health for granted again.

Almost too much cuteness for one picture.

We plan to rest over the next week and stay away from the hospital.

Good idea Theo and Nina!

Thank you for being a part of our support team and another thank you for getting us this far. We love you so much.

With love,


Sam and Leslie Bledsoe

P.S.  Thank you for always making our trips to the mailbox so fun.  After two days at the hospital this week, we came home to a mailbox full of loving cards and funny packages.  We have new friends in Little Rock and a new friend in California.  Christina, keep your head up and stay in touch.

P.P.S.  Matt-thanks for the Bob Marley sweatpants from the Philippines.  Sam’s wardrobe is now compete.


11 Responses to “We’re Almost Finished!”

  1. 1 Carrie December 9, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I wanna take ya
    Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama
    Key Largo, Montego,
    baby why don’t we go,

    Off the Florida Keys
    there’s a place called Kokomo…. 🙂

    I am so proud of you guys!! Y’all have been incredibly and unimaginably strong this year. I love you both SO much!!

  2. 2 Allison Turner Donovan December 9, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    Sam and Leslie! I had NO idea you’ve been on the journey you’ve been on the past year. I just wanted to send my thoughts and prayers your way. I’ve only had a few minutes to read your blog, but you guys truly are an inspiration! Thank you for sharing your lives.

  3. 3 MOM & DAD HACKETT December 9, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    Yipee, we can all exhale in 2 weeks. Who knew we could hold our breath for 232 days? Dad and I are so proud of both of you for your strength and courage.
    Peace and Love (and maybe a little Santa),
    Mom and Dad Hackett

  4. 4 Therese December 10, 2011 at 1:12 am

    Okay, first – I can’t believe I missed the Thanksgiving update. But am thrilled about the timeline and the light at the end of the tunnel. Remember, “normal” is only a setting on the washer. You two deserve sun, sand, warm breezes and cool beverages! I continue to hold you both in my prayers. I do hope, however, that you both realize you’re going to need to continue some kind of blog (although hopefully on a different subject!) to keep us all entertained.
    Best wishes for that final chemo. Stay strong! T.

  5. 5 Suzanne December 10, 2011 at 9:23 am

    I can see the white flag ! Your mom and I will be packing our matching sweatshirts for your family/friend Florida trip. Yea. Sounds so fun. Wishing you and Sam all good days. Love you, Suzanne

  6. 6 Whitney December 10, 2011 at 10:17 am

    Hey you two,

    I am so so glad you are nearly finished with this epic adventure. This blog seems a testament to how figures, graphs and a little computer animation makes everything more manageable. And finally those countdown figures are dwindling.
    Can’t wait to see you soon!


  7. 7 Louise Bilbro December 10, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    You two are amazing. What an example you set for the rest of us!

  8. 8 Kate December 10, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    Yay for you guys! The beach is getting closer every minute. I like that Theo and BB are included in your beach drawing… they have been practicing getting into Vandy bags, just getting ready to stow away for real for the beach vacation!

    Much love,

  9. 9 Dad and Mom Bledsoe December 10, 2011 at 11:23 pm

    What a blessing for you to have made so MUCH PROGRESS in these last months! You two will have an awesome time at the beach (if you decide to leave the two felines at home, we got it covered) getting some well deserved rest and relaxation. Almost over for now and the future awaits but it is a bright one filled with love, hope and much better times.

  10. 10 Tara December 12, 2011 at 8:58 am

    Buffalo wing/collar bone exclamation points! You all have outdone yourselves in punctuation this time…would it be listed as Buffalo Collar Wing Times Roman in Word?

    In all seriousness, I am so excited to see this part of your journey coming to an end. It has been inspirational to see how well you both have handled everything thrown at you…All my love and prayers are wth you always.

  11. 11 Heather Burchfield December 16, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    Hi Sam and Leslie!

    My name is Heather, and I’m one of Carrie’s friends. She just told me about some of the things you guys have been going through this past year, and my heart goes out to you guys. Since I work at the Cancer Center, I wanted to tell you guys about a new Cancer Wellness Program at Vanderbilt, which offers complementary services to your treatment. Your doctors may have mentioned it, but if they haven’t, it’s everything from nutrition to exercise to counseling. They focus on treating the “whole person” and help you figure out your new normal. I just thought I’d mention it because some of the services can be very helpful. If you’re interested in finding out more about them, let me know. I hope you two have a Merry Christmas and enjoy the beach!

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