So, what does this mean?
Induction chemo was successful! It did what the doctors hoped it would do, and Ramón's bone marrow biopsy looked normal. However, since only a sample was examined, there are most likely still leukemia cells in his body. We need to stop those cells from multiplying, hence the latest chapter of this book: consolidation chemo.
Today Ramón got his first dose of outpatient consolidation chemo, and he'll have his second dose at 8 tonight. (He's wearing a manbag holding his IV pump, by the way. He's doing more of a strut than a walk.) This will be repeated on Wednesday and Friday of this week. Next Monday, he'll get a second chemo drug added to the mix. We'll then wait 21-28 days while the chemo wipes out his immune system and [hopefully] any additional leukemia cells that are hiding out. Then we'll repeat this entire month-ish long process again. And again. And again. No need to do the math; that's somewhere between 4 and 6 months of chemo starting today.
Though remission sounds wonderfully amazing, it's simply one of many victories we hope to achieve along the way. Ramón still gets to constantly remind me that he has cancer, though I do still have a terminal illness that I've had since birth -- but who's counting.
Lastly, it means we're grateful. Tomorrow marks five weeks since this all began, and we have had no shortage of love along the way. Thank you all for your thoughts, prayers, messages, jokes, gifts, meals, favors, offers, patience, etc. It has been a tremendous blessing and has afforded us the energy to keep moving forward.
Happy Bone Marrow Monday!