Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Tuesday With Dino

Dino is awake and talking, though ever so quietly. The expected contingent of tubes and wires and blinking monitors is there, but not in a scary way. The ICU is pleasantly calm and his nurses are totally tuned in to him. The pain? He says it's about a 7 and he has his trusty Sister Mo button pusher, now set to activate every ten minutes. So the recovery begins.

We caught his surgeon, Dr. Norton out in the hall and he expanded on what he had told us yesterday. They got all of the tumor, but there are a number of small spots that have metasasized - to what extent we don't know. The doctor reiterated that chemotherapy is the next order of business, but that won't begin until he's healed from the surgery. We do know that the surgeon also removed a small portion of his liver, his right adrenals and right kidney, and a portion of his right colon (though there is no need for a colostomy). Dr. Norton was actually upbeat about the limited reduction of these organs, saying that it would not materially affect his lifestyle.

Once Dino is readmitted to a regular hospital room, probably tomorrow, we should be hearing more from Dr. Jacobs (who will be supervising the chemotherapy treatment) as to the overall plan. Are we out of the woods yet? I think so, but I can't say for sure - mainly because we haven't gotten all the facts from all the players. As much as we want to seek out every answer from every doctor, that's not the format this story is following. Dino hasn't lost his positive posture, nor have we. But we're in a slightly different mode at the moment here in the ICU and this is more of a time of peace and comfort and - trust.

I must tell you something. Several weeks ago, when we first came to Stanford and were so thoroughly energized by their immediate "take charge" response, I had a bit of a unique revelation (and these things rarely come to me). We had been hearing from so many people who were focusing on Dino, so many prayer groups who had ramped up the troops, so much thought energy circling around my son. We were in a small side room massaging each other's emotions about how lucky we were to be here. Then Dr. Jacobs entered. As she began speaking, her words had such a soft and deep power that the room was for but a second filled with the light of all of Dino's friends.

I know that sounds a little "woo-woo", but I'm not a religious man (probably more like most of you, a little spiritually inclined). Fast forward to about 30 minutes ago, when sitting in the ICU waiting room, I thought I'd better get another blog out. I grabbed my notes folder and was about to head down several floors to the computer room when I heard singing. From directly around the corner. Girls voices almost sublimely harmonizing in a choir-like tune unfamiliar to me - echoing softly down the hall. They must have been with a family across from us in the room because I could see Mom and Dad's faces in a smile. Again, the light, almost like a tractor beam. We know you're here - your love's coming through loud and clear - and sweet.

Dick Scoppettone
(Dino's dad)


Barry said...

Woot Woot!!! Glad are you awake Dino! I am hopeful you will be able to take over the blog in a couple of days, can not wait to hear from you.

Andi said...

Dick- Thats the sweetest thing I've read in a long time, and I'm sure we all needed it. Thank you. Our prayers are with all of you. Stay strong - we're all here pulling for ALL of you.
Lots of love and prayers.


Lisa said...

I have a big smile on my face.
Good thoughts all day on the time.


Mathew said...

Wow. What an amazing post. Both you Big Ds are pretty impressive fellas. All of us out here in digital land checking this thing every 10 minutes so much appreciate the opportunity to not only pull for you but march with you in your war-- and win.

Christine said...

DIno! 30 lbs?!
hope you are resting well. i cannot wait to see you.
all my love...

p.s. your dad is as eloquent with words as mine.

Jenee said...

Excellent news D-man. Your dad is a keeping your blog updated like a pro, but I must admit, I look forward to hearing your voice come through soon. Take care -- happy thoughts, and big hugs.

MiMi said...

Hi to everyone it is bonus mom (dinos stepmom, dicks wife). We have just returned from Stanford icu and dean is talking softly and his eyes are at half mast due to sister mo. As we left today he said "we are going to kick ass" with a slight smile. I gave him a big kiss and called him a warrior. Just to let you all know the doctor(Dr. Jacobs) was quit surprised at his state of alertness.
Thanks to everyone with prayers and positive attitude. Keep up the good work.
bonus mom (MiMi)

Linda said...

Dino, I am so happy that the surgery is over for you. 30 pounds, now that was a huge tumor. I know in my heart that you will beat this and continue to improve with treatment and healing and power of prayer. We are praying for you and keeping you in close in thought.
Thinking of your family as well and praying for them.
Much Love,
Mrs. Nev (Linda Nevin)

Kim said...

Sweet fancy moses! I'm so, so happy Dino's resting comfortably and I'm equally as glad that the love of Dino's army surrounds all of you.

And, no, your revelation doesn't sound "woo woo" at all. My mom was in the hospital over the Christmas holiday earlier this year with a life threatening complication. After a particularly rough morning, we were all exhausted, down and out and in need of a pick me up. About 15 minutes later, we heard the most beautiful music down the hallway. A group of people had come to the oncology floor to sing Christmas carols. It was as though our army was there to offer their support and give back the holiday cheer that The Grinch tried to take away. It was nothing short of amazing. Here's to simple pleasures and small miracles!

kkbirdhouse said...

Beautifully reported, Dick. Thank you so much for sharing that with us. It means a lot to all of us out here that you all there are feeling our love and prayers. Love, kathyk

Francesca Giessmann said...

No "woo-woo" at all... it is important to believe in this special , whimsical, spiritual moments that life brings us.. otherwise it is just so tough...to hard...
Please tell Dino that I am thinking of him and as soon as he can eat I will be sending him Swiss Chocolate ( maybe not 30 Pounds) so he can indulge...
a big kiss

Amy said...

Dino + Sister Mo sittin in a tree...
Is she your new love? I bet right now you're having a nice loopy time with her by your side. Whatever it takes.
Dick, real mom, and bonus mom: how lucky Dino is to have such an amazing team of parentals to take care of biz. You're also heros in this story.
Hang tough big D! x x x

Billy Ramirez said...

The right kidney is merely an accessory, or so I've heard.

Get well now, Big Dog.

Tim said...

Dino and family, I am so happy to hear everything is working out. I was only recently made aware of your situation and all of my positive thoughts have been sent south in the last few days. Amazing.

Positive and hopeful,

Tim Livingston

Kelley said...


You don't know me as my friendship with your son is not yet a year old but I just wanted to tell you anyway how much your latest post affected me. It was so beautiful that a few tears fell on my desktop and I had to leave my office for a moment to pull it back together. I am not a religious person, but I do believe quite strongly in the power of many minds and hearts turned to one purpose. I believe that with all the love and support your wonderful son has from so many different sources he can't help but pull through this.

My thoughts are with Dino and his entire family as the recovery process begins.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr. Scopettone for this beautiful blog entry. I was very touched by it, and your love for your son. We are thinking about Dino and sending our warm, healing energy from Sonoma.

Nicole Abaté Ducarroz
(Corey & Lynn Abate Johnson's sister)

denise said...

What an amazing post! So glad to hear that Dino is awake and talking! Your thoughts aren't 'woo-woo' at all - we are there with you all, cheering you on and supporting you all the way.