Treatment Update 3.2

February 9, 2013

Cycle Three of my scheduled four cycles of treatment ends Sunday with lab results showing a continued decline in the myeloma spike in my blood. When the m-spike gets to the point my oncologist wants, then the harvesting of stem cells is done for storage and transplant. I am thankful that the lab numbers are going in the right direction.

If the m-spike is not dropping fast enough, my Winship institute oncologist at Emory will decide if additional cycles of the same treatment cocktail are indicated. He may decide to do a five-day super chemo treatment at Emory Hospital called DCEP, instead, which would be a strong cocktail that should take the spike down lower.

Either way, he is optimistic that the myeloma level can be brought down to the level he wants it to be. I will see him Tuesday, February 12 for office consultation.

Mary and I are looking forward to visiting with our Biltmore History Group friends at Biltmore Estate for an overnight trip and program. As I mentioned last week, my father is going with us for this trip.

Samuel Todd Walker has prepared a program on the estate and the Vanderbilt Family for the enjoyment of all who will be attending Sunday, 7:30 p.m. at The Inn on Biltmore Estate. Member David Evans has been busy with invitations, details, and tours. Thanks, Todd, David and all the members of our group who will be attending!

If you are interested, check out and like the page on Facebook, The Real History of Biltmore House, posted by Samuel Todd Walker. The posts are chock full of interesting information!

Mike Green
February 9, 2013

Pictures (top- bottom)

March 2012, Mike at fountain
Vintage view of Biltmore House
Bill Cecil, Jr. and Mike at Lenoir-Rhyne Library Talk
Biltmore History Group members at Lioncrest for Passholders’ Storytelling Dinner

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Treatment Update 3.1

February 1, 2013

I complete half of cycle 3 of treatment this week. As each cycle is two weeks, I have next week and cycle 3 is complete. As the doctors are wanting a lower m-spike, we will have to see if Dr. L at Winship has to replace cycle 4 as planned with a changed chemical cocktail and short hospital stay. The m spike reveals the level of cancer-producing bugs in my body.

The gratifying news revealed yesterday by lab results is that the m-spike is now going in the right direction. We’ll see if this coming week takes it down to the optimal number. Then, we can see if cycle 4 is continued a week later (one week between cycles) or the changed chemical cocktail and brief hospitalization comes into play.

I feel good (no pain meds) and I thank God and my inspired and brilliant doctors. I drove my little red corvette yesterday after some weeks as a passenger only. It was as fun as usual and I did not scare Mary too much! My attention span is much improved over an earlier episode of driving. Mary, my sons, my father, Sarah and other family and friends are indispensable! Their energy and love are pulling me through this so much better than I had anticipated…worried?

In a couple of weeks a bunch of my Biltmore History Group are going to spend an overnight at my favorite, special place, Biltmore Estate. My father is joining us and that will be a delight. It has been over thirty years since we have enjoyed it together.

Continue to keep those thoughts and prayers coming for me, please. The myeloma bugs must die.

All the best and have a fun weekend!

Mike Green
February 1, 2013

The first photograph is of curly-headed Mike a few years back (1978?) at Biltmore Estate.
The second photograph is of a few of our Biltmore History Group at a Passholders Dinner and Storytelling Gathering at Biltmore Estate’s Lioncrest Venue.
The third photograph is of William Amherst Vanderbilt Cecil, Jr., the co-owner with his sister, Diana Cecil Pickering and CEO of The Biltmore Company with Mike at a library talk a few years back.

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Treatment Update 3

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My third cycle of Velcade and Revlimid began yesterday with labs and Velcade injection at the Alpharetta clinic. My Alpharetta doctor was interested and concurred that my Emory doctor wanted greater results on lowering the m-spike of myeloma. He has a benchmark that he wants the spike to be before the harvesting of stem cells. The super chemo will be infused at Emory during a hospital stay. The transplanting of my harvested stem cells back into the long bones of my body will follow this at Emory. That hospital stay will be at least two weeks because of a compromised immune system.

Who knows what the labs will show that were taken this week? My guess is that the combo will need to be changed to get down to a spike of 2. So, I may be skipping Cycle Four of Velcade/Revlimid at Alpharetta. If that happens I will have a super chemo cocktail (DCEP) dexamethasone (steroids), cyclophosphamide, etoposide, cisplatin administered in its stead at Emory. This will entail a hospital stay of four or five days, since it is stronger. Editorial comment: I am all about aggressive treatment, I would just like to avoid hospitals after my last stay in a hospital of 35 days. I know that my friends and family can relate to that quirk! This treatment and stay is not to be confused with the transplant which will be the two week stay in hospital.

It is gratifying to know that cycles and drug combos are not static and can be tailored to fit patient needs. Treatments after the transplant may be done as part of a maintenance program to keep blood work in acceptable parameters.

My Emory doctor, in a matter-of-fact manner, said that he has Plan B and Plan C available for me when needed. I think he has been through this a few times before! I put my faith in God to guide these brilliant doctors and well-trained nurses and aides on my transplant team. I thank my family and friends for your help in prayers and making sure the “good times are still rolling.”

Below:
Mike at the Infusion Lab at Atlanta Cancer Care (now affiliated with The Northside Cancer Center).

Mike Green
January 29, 2013

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Random Thoughts on Upcoming Treatment

I am finishing up Cycle 2 of chemo Sunday, January 20th. Two more cycles are indicated at this point. I have an appointment with my oncologist at Winship Cancer Institute/Emory this coming week. That is good! I have always wanted to be prepared as soon as possible.

After the four chemo cycles of two weeks on of Velcade, Decadron and Revlimid and one week off, the treatments will have waged a war in my bone marrow, destroying the myeloma and lowering that m spike. But, I have those two cycles to complete so that the labs show my marrow chemistry is ready for the “big blowout” in isolation at Emory Hospital for a two week stay.

The increased dosing of chemo and the harvesting and freezing of my stem cells will come during isolation at Emory (low immune levels, then). The transplant of harvested stem cells will be there at Emory.

Tests are scheduled for February 19th and 20th with a follow-up visit for the pre-transplant consent on March 12th. If my test results from the evaluation are good, we will probably know when the transplant will be scheduled. This is an autologous transplant as it uses stem cells from my bone marrow.

I’m actually coping well, no nausea, just minor neuropathy in my feet. I still get out and walk on a track or in the neighborhood. Shoulder has myeloma in it, so that has to be treated gingerly. But, hey! I am kicking this thing with a lot of help from God and the people who love and care for me. Love to all of my friends and family who are keeping up with my postings. I appreciate your comments, well-wishing and prayers more than you can imagine.

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Mike Green
January 19, 2013

Treatment Update 2

Cycle 2 of the four treatment cycles comes to a close this week with the administration of Velcade on Monday and Thursday. Revlimid continues to be dispensed each evening at 10 p.m. Steroids are administered Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Urine collection and blood samples will be delivered and taken at Winship Cancer Institute at Emory this week.

Office visit with my oncologist at Winship Cancer Institute will be Tuesday, January 22, 2013. The m spike which measures protein in the blood is down, 1.2. This is good data going in the right direction. Pain levels are managed with Advil when needed. I am walking on a school track with Mary and Brody at least every other day for a quarter mile. And, I am driving again!

There are two more treatment cycles which are key in lowering the m-spike and getting the stem cells ready for harvesting. It could be that an additional fifth cycle of two weeks’ Velcade/Revlimid will be decided based on lab results.

When lab numbers indicate, the final blasts of chemotherapy will be administered in isolation during the two-week hospital stay at Emory. The harvested stem cells are reinserted for re-population of the long bones’ marrow.

It helps to review the process for myself and interested others, knowing that the cycles of treatment established at Emory have a good track record at sending multiple myeloma into remission .

Mike Green
January 14, 2013

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March 2012…last visit to Biltmore Estate…Several of the Biltmore History Group including members of my family are planning a a brief overnight visit to the estate, February 11 and 12, 2013.

Heritage Ramblings 2

I have tracked the original Pre-Civil War George Washington Collier Store and Post Office which was one of the first businesses located in Five Points at 23 Peachtree Street.

The grocery and post office were burned in the destruction of Atlanta. Collier rebuilt in 1866 on the same site, eventually building The Collier Building on the site. For several years, the corner was famous for a drug store and tobacconist at the location known as Silverman’s Corner in Five Points. Wash Collier had also built one of the finest hotels in Atlanta, The Aragon Hotel, in 1896.

I have included a vintage postcard of the hotel. The latest building on the site of Collier’s Store is the Olympic Building. This site is very familiar to Atlantans and visitors as the site of the huge neon Coca-Cola sign in downtown Atlanta. I have included a photograph of the location. This is the site of the largest New Years’ Eve Celebration in the Southeast since 1989, when the Peach Drop was created. Along with music, celebrations and festivities the site of Pioneer Wash Collier’s old grocery store and post office is Atlanta Central on New Year’s Eve. Collier’s rebuilding efforts in 1866 and his new construction efforts around the Five Points area created a newly minted Atlanta Millionnaire. He still owned 700 acres of land lots including the 104 home place. This land would not be sold until the 1940s as Sherwood Forest became an upscale residential neighborhood. The expressway systems were being planned and surveyed. The interstate would separate the land holdings of Andrew Collier up Peachtree on the west side of the interstate planned cuts. Collier Woods subdivision and Anjaco Road pay homage to Andrew Collier’s developed property.

My great-great grandmother, Elizabeth Collier Liddell, sister of George Washington Collier, lived in their father Meredith Collier’s house built in 1822 in land lot 104 adjacent to Ansley Park. Father Meredith Collier, who had become a member of the State Legislature, died in 1863, and was buried on the grounds of land lot 104. Mother Elizabeth joined the family plot a little later. The Meredith Collier estate left land to the male heirs and it left property in the form of slaves and chattel to the female heirs. She soon married and went to live on the Thomas Haney Liddell Plantation near the present intersection of Steve Reynolds Boulevard and I-85 and Beaver Ruin Creek. Her father’s house was virtually destroyed in the Atlanta Campaign, but was rebuilt in 1866 by George Washington Collier. He occupied the house until his death in 1903. The graves of Meredith and Elizabeth Collier were exhumed and reinterred at the newly opened West View Cemetery.

The house stayed in the family until a prominent architect restored it in the late 1952-53. The Jimmy Bentleys purchased the home in 1958 from Julian Barfield who had been sold the estate by the widow of the late restoration architect, Kennon Perry. Jimmy Bentley worked in the Governor’s Office and was a leader in the Republican Party, eventually becoming Comptroller General for the State of Georgia. Wash Collier’s old house became the site of legislative barbecues for state politicos.

The home is on its original knoll in the middle of Sherwood Forest on Lady Marian Lane, an early housing development in Atlanta. It exhibits survivals in silIs and reused hearths and chimneys and other recycled house parts. Descendants of black walnut trees planted by Meredith Collier’s sons still live near the smokehouse. It is said that on really hot Atlanta days the hams and bacon still perfume the old smokehouse. I have included a photograph of the stair hall in the restored Collier-Bentley House. I have included another view of The Collier Bentley House on its knoll on Land Lot 104 in Sherwood Forest today. There is a photograph of the rebuilt smokehouse, as well.

Mike Green
January 12, 2013

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Treatment Update

When I last posted about my cancer treatment, I had just finished week one of the first cycle. The cycles are two weeks of chemo, one week off. I am at the end of the week off as of January 4, 2013. Next week I begin cycle two with two weeks of chemo. Then, a week off…

I had labs done this week and the numbers have improved somewhat. There will be about four cycles. At the end of #4 cycle, my doctors will decide if I am ready for harvesting stem cells from my bone marrow. These harvested stem cells will then be stored for recolonization of the marrow. This will involve one last blast of chemo in which I will be isolated at Emory because of immune system issues from that last chemo blast. The stem cells recolonize my bone marrow then.

I am thankful that this treatment has a very good track record. That is my update for cycle one. Here’s hoping that the next cycle goes well and continues to kick myeloma butt!

Rambo Mary still has me on a short leash with the Arixtra blood thinner injections she gives me each day. Thank God for good insurance as a one month prescription is a bit pricey…costs four thousand dollars.

I have included pictures of Mary and Sly Stallone as Rambo. Truly, Mary is much sweeter and has a wonderful bedside manner!

I hope everyone has an excellent weekend!

Mike Green
January 4, 2013

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Heritage Ramblings

My family and Atlanta go back before the founding of the city to the days of Cherokee and Creek trails, such as Standing Pitchtree. This trade route became Peachtree Street, the major artery into the new city.

Below is an amazing survival from the burning of Atlanta during the Civil War in 1862. This is the second oldest house in Atlanta, after the Lemuel Grant House of Grant Park. The Grant house became a partial survival, having lost major sections of floorplans.

My great-great-great grandfather, Meredith Collier, built this substantial homeplace for his family above Clear Creek in what developed into Ansley Park and Sherwood Forest. The neighborhood was laid out around Collier’s house on the hill. The brothers and my great-great grandmother grew up on this last undeveloped land lot in what became Atlanta.

The house was sacked and burned in 1862, but was rebuilt accurately and was restored to the family. Great-great-great grandparents, Meredith and Elizabeth Collier were later buried at this homeplace by son, George Washington Collier. When Westview Cemetery was developed, they were reinterred there. The heirs divided slaves and land when Meredith Collier’s will was settled. Elizabeth Collier married Thomas Haney Liddell of Gwinnett County and settled with her slave inheritance into the 1840 plantation home where the family would remain for 135 years.

The Clear Creek property was sold out of the family and was developed as upscale Ansley Park and Sherwood Forest housing developments. The Meredith Collier house was professionally restored by a noted architect and lived in for many years by a politician, James Bentley. The Collier land holdings were developed, making the family some of Atlanta’s richest and most influential citizens. The remaining Collier sons’ land holdings became Collier Woods.

G. W. Collier served as grocer and postmaster in Five Points in Atlanta. He developed a large land holding into the famed, luxurious Aragon Hotel in Five Points.

The first photograph is the Meredith Collier Clear Creek Homeplace on Lady Marian Lane in Sherwood Forest, Atlanta, Ga.
The second photograph is of Elizabeth Collier Liddell and great-great grandmother of the author. The third photograph is of the 1840 plantation home of Thomas Haney Liddell and Elizabeth Collier Liddell. The fourth photograph is a portrait of Thomas Haney Liddell of Gwinnett County. The last photograph is of my mother, Charlotte Ann Liddell Green (May 2, 1932- September 17, 2012) who was born and raised in the Gwinnett Plantation home.

Mike Green
December 24, 2012

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Christmas Ornament Traditions at the Greens

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The two photographs show the Christmas Tree collectible year ornaments from Waterford (above) and Wedgewood (below). Will’s tree is displayed with 25 Jasperware blue and white year ornaments. Evan’s tree is hung with 29 Waterford lead crystal year ornaments. Mary orders these each year. The boys’ grandmother, the late Sara Doss Donley of Canton, Georgia, started acquiring them beginning at their births.

We still display them in our dining room. One of these days, they may travel to our sons’ homes.

Mike Green
December 22, 2012

Week of Treatment Update

December 22, 2012

Having started the first cycle of chemo December 17, I have completed five days of treatment for myeloma. I am relieved that there have been no unpleasant side-effects, such as nausea or hair loss. If anything, my appetite has increased a good deal and pain level has gone low with minor management. I am completely mobile and feel uplifted!

I went to the gym for some therapy December 18 and did some low impact exercises and stretching. Reid, Amber and the folks training were glad to see me walk back into the gym. This is a boon for my body and mind. I have been keeping this regimen since I was dismissed from the hospital December 2011. Thanks to God for giving me strength, determination, and healing. I appreciate all of my friends’ and relatives’ support on FB and in your prayers!

Mary “Rambo” Green keeps killing cancer cells with all of the meds she feeds me! Thanks, Mary!

Mike Green
December 22, 2012

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