Dennis Disbot's Comeback

For: Dennis Disbot
San Francisco, CA
Organizer: Dennis Disbot
$52,295
of $75,000 goal
69% Complete
Raised by 302 donors
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

When I started fighting cancer 21 months ago I did not anticipate the devastation disease could impose upon one's life.  My heartfelt prayers and positive thoughts goes out to other families who find themselves in a similar mess.  I pray that they too are surrounded by the world's best cancer fighting tribe, just like the one I have been blessed with here. 
Over the last few months since I found out about recurrence I have been monitoring this cancer very closely.  While doing so I started a dietary therapy called the Gerson Therapy.  It is a powerful, yet slow healer.  During this treatment my cancer continued to aggressively grow.  I decided to begin in-patient chemotherapy on November 5th in order to suppress it.  It did. I can actually feel that my liver has decreased in size.  This is a good sign. 
These next few months will be considered salvage chemo regimen as it is the most extreme dosage known in the oncology community, and providing additional chemo after this run is unsafe.  This regimen takes one's immune system down to ground zero in order to wipe out their immune system.  A stem cell transplant is also required in order to give the bone marrow a reboot after the high dose chemo.  
It is my hope that this will be the remedy. I have fought very hard to get to here and I will continue this fight.  I have Esther and Theo counting on me to stick around. We are doing our best to stay positive, and keep moving forward. However, it has been increasingly difficult given the length of this journey. 
We are opening up another round of fundraising to alleviate financial stress. Conventional and non-conventional treatments become expensive given the daily adherence to their protocols. Also, this treatment will keep me from going back to work for at least nine months. Therefore cost of living expenses are also included in this ask.  
Our friends at Youcaring have put together an amazing video for us to kickoff our latest fundraising efforts.  It is our hope that our story is shared in order to reach our fundraising goal and raise awareness about testicular cancer. 
Check out the video here. Donate. And share it.  
Thank you so much for your donation, your prayers, and sharing this video with friends, colleagues, and family.  It takes a village to overcome challenges.  I can not do this alone, and your support makes a big impact on my fight.             


Fundraiser Notes:

I met Dennis, Esther and Theo thru the YouCaring StoryTelling Project.  As someone who had recently supported a dear friend’s successful fundraising efforts I was asked by YouCaring if I would be willing to advise Dennis and Esther in their launch of a much needed fundraiser.  

I was so moved by Dennis’ story that I asked if I could help.  I saw absolutely no need for this family to be distracted from Dennis’ journey to health when I could be of service.  As I write this “ask” Dennis sits in a hospital bed awaiting the next round of chemo.

The money we raise here goes towards medical expenses in both conventional and non conventional anti-cancer treatments.   It will also go towards the cost of living in San Francisco for the next 9 months of treatment.  Cancer steals time and resources.  While it may be Dennis’ personal health battle, there is no part of family life that has not been impacted.  Work hours have transformed into days spent in treatments, doctor appointments, and so much waiting.  There are transportation expenses, childcare costs in addition to all the expenses of just maintaining a life. The medical costs are a revolving year of deductibles and co pays.  Dennis hates admitting that they are “quite frankly, maxed out”.

It takes a village.  I am grateful to join in this tribe of love surrounding “Team Paekbot”.  

I recently read a beautiful definition of “team” that feels extremely applicable here-   

“A team becomes more than just a collection of people when a strong sense of mutual commitment creates synergy, thus generating performance greater than the sum of the performance of its individual members”

Here is to synergy and the many hands that can help make light lifting during this challenging time.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on March 2, 2017

Posted on March 2, 2017

Day 14, Post Transplant:
This is the time in treatment where the side effects are most profound. Given the yucky feels now is the right time to share some positive news:
- Fundraiser tonight in Brooklyn!
-Tumor markers in my labs are in the normal range
-The one routine I cherish is when Esther reads the "Dear Abby" column in the paper.
-Liver mets have decreased in size by 83%
-Doctors are optimistic about my progress

Hope is all around us.

Last November was a game changer. That's really when we started mounting this comeback. From the start, you all showed me so much love. The repetition of receiving love and positive affirmations on a daily basis created a new thought pattern within me. A pattern of positive thinking, and self-love. Thank you for that. Really.


Posted on December 11, 2016

Posted on December 11, 2016

¡I'm outta' here! Wrapped up my first round of high dose chemotherapy. I'm exhausted. Yet so grateful for each of you. Much love to the incredible nurses at UCSF. Jeezzzz. They just run the show masterfully.

Posted on December 8, 2016

Posted on December 8, 2016

UPDATE y'all:

Dennis came home from the hospital after a week-long stint the day after Thanksgiving. This round went WAY better than all the other rounds of chemo combined. He found a sleep regimen and we advocated for our needs in a way that felt empowering.

And now for some GREAT news. The last CT scan Dennis did last week shows that the liver mets (tumors) have decreased in size and are more consistently reading as necrotic (dying)! After months of feeling like we were getting kicked while we were already down, this was a great lift for us and just in time for the holidays!

However, even with the good news, we still have a long journey ahead of us. What are the next steps? We are continuing our path towards high-dose chemotherapy + an autologous stem cell transplant. 

This week, Dennis had a bone marrow biopsy and had a port placed. Tonight, he went back into the hospital for a quick overnight stay for 1 dose of chemotherapy. Next week, he starts daily injections of a drug that helps boost stem cell production in his body. The week after that, Dennis will go in to start a process called apheresis. This process will process out the stem cells in his blood. Once we have enough stem cells for both rounds, they are frozen until January.

At the beginning of January, Dennis will be heading in to the hospital for about 3-4 weeks. At that point, he will receive high doses of chemotherapy followed by the actual stem cell transplant. They unfreeze his stem cells are re-introduce them back into his body. Once, the doctors feel that his immune system is healthy enough, he will be released to rest at home for 2-3 weeks. In mid-February, he will go in for round 2. 

So, for the rest of this month, we are spending as much quality time together and with Theo as possible. Time together is so precious and we are maximizing this short break. 

Again, thank you for your continued support. We are just so blown away by the love and light we are receiving from all of you. Thank you, THANK YOU!

Many Blessings,
Esther

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