Mark Watson

Archive for April, 2017

Mayo Test Results April 30, 2017

by on Apr.30, 2017, under Amyloidosis

I returned from Mayo Wednesday evening after 3 days of treatment and tests.  The most troublesome of the results was my heart.  I was in atrial flutter most of the week which got me a lot of attention from the medical team.  While their hope is they can still control the heart issues with medication or another possible ablation, the bottom line is the disease is negatively impacting my heart.  To what degree, only time will tell.

The other results were positive.  No lung, kidney, liver, or other damage.  A known side-effect of the treatment is vitamin A depletion, so my dosage was increased to 10,000 iu for the time being.

I had so many plans for this point in my life.  Some days I get so frustrated that my life is no where near my plans.  That’s a tough thing for a Type A personality.  In my devotional book by Tony Dungy, Uncommon Life Daily Challenges was this was the daily devotion on my return:

I Cor. 1:25, 27 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.  27 But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; ESV

While it is almost impossible for me not to make plans, I have to trust God’s plan is far more superior.  In the meantime I’ll keep planning and adapting to the path God puts me on.

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April 24th Treatment and Tests

by on Apr.22, 2017, under Amyloidosis

I will spend three days at Mayo Clinic, Monday – Wednesday. This is my six month follow-up for a potential liver transplant. I’m already at the top of the recipient list but am in a “hold” status. Since I have been doing so well, we have elected to forgo a transplant for now. It is unlikely I will ever agree to a transplant given the success rate for my particular genetic mutation. Typically it only gives the recipient another seven years of living and not a good seven years. So if it comes to that, I will probably just live out whatever days are left.

Besides treatment the next three days, they will do tests to verify if there is any other organ involvement or damage. Test include, kidneys, lungs, and heart. Amyloidosis, left untreated, typically causes extensive damage to major organs by creating “sludge” and making them inoperable. So far in my case it has been minimal. I would appreciate your thoughts and prayers for my treatment and results.

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Easter Weekend

by on Apr.15, 2017, under Joyous Leadership

Sometimes you receive encouragement at the most bizarre times from people you least expect. A couple of weeks ago when I was really struggling, I received a devotional book in the mail called Streams in the Desert by L.B. Cowman. It is a 366 day devotional for individuals going through difficult times. What made this so special was that Brooks Evans sent this along with another book. She said that she and Phillip read it daily as they were going though his last days here on earth. Even though Phillip only passed away a short three months ago, Brooks is already ministering to others.  She followed that up with a text saying “Thankful for Easter more than ever this year.  I bet you are too.  Thankful He is and will continue to make all things new.”  Wow!  To have a faith like her and Phillip have.

Then yesterday I received Tony Dungy’s The One Year Uncommon Life Daily Challenge from my cousin Karen.  The cool thing about this gift is that Tony Dungy is one of my all time favorite football coaches and human beings in general.  He has faced some dark and challenging times in his personal life and yet endured it only to become stronger.  I already own a couple of his books, so this was icing on the cake.

Let’s all remember our job on this earth is to care an encourage one another till we can make that final journey.

Happy Easter!

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April 3, 2017 Treatment

by on Apr.03, 2017, under Amyloidosis

Today as I am receiving my treatment, I thought I would take this opportunity to write an update.

Today I write from a hospital bed, making typing a little more difficult. I’m usually in a chemo chair but for some reason or the other, I got a bed. I will do my best to keep the mistakes to a minimal.

The protocol for this treatment is to first check in with the doctor or P.A. in hematology, then once approved it is off to the other wing on the 10th floor of Mayo for treatment.

Today’s physical went well. It appears my heart is staying in sinus rhythm with no issues. I do get a few PV’s (Premature Ventricular Contractions) occasionally, but nothing major. It is fairly common, even among healthy people. You may have PV’s and not even realize it. It is that feeling you get when you feel like your heart has skipped a beat or added a beat. It can happen a lot if you are startled or excited in some way.

The talk today from the health care team was positive and upbeat. We talked in terms of success and how we can cope with this disease without a transplant. The research team still believes this drug has the potential to eliminate the need to ever have a liver transplant or any other organ for that matter. Their goal is to make this a disease something that you die with and not from. Hmm. . . That’s my goal too!

Transplant with my mutation is really not an option. People with previous transplants with Ser97Ty usually only live around 7 years post-transplant – and not a good 7 years I might add. So today we keep going down this unknown path and hope for the best.

I have had a few pity parties the last 21 days, I am ashamed to say. While all of you are out there living up your glorious Facebook lives, I was just wondering if I was going to make it to my next birthday. Ironic how things can change. Oh this is my problem – not yours. It’s stinking thinking. A lot of us with debilitating or terminal illnesses get it now and then. The trick is not to stay there. But as God can only do, I got “preached” at yesterday in a message from our Pastor. If you have 25 minutes, I promise it will be worth your time.

My God, Why Have You Forsaken Me from West Side Christian Church on Vimeo.

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Joyous Leadership – Chapter 1

by on Apr.01, 2017, under Joyous Leadership

Chapter 1 of Joyous Leadership has been sent to the book review team. It is titled “I Never Regretted Anything I Didn’t Say”. It is a chapter on attempting to control my tongue. It is a painfully funny chapter but has a lot of good experience and learning in it. I’m excited to see what the reviewers have to say and offering ways to improve it.

It’s not too late to sign up if you want to be a reviewer. All you have to do is send me an email (johnmarkwatson@gmail.com) and subscribe to the blog. Once I have that I will promptly get you a copy of the 1st chapter.

Also, if there are any artist out there that would like to attempt at designing a book cover, I would love to see what you would propose.

Thanks again!

Mark

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