HCV 2 months post treatment update

Things have been good so far. My energy level is back to “normal” (50 year old normal). Not feeling like I have the flu for 3 to 5 days a week is AWESOME for sure. The meds I were on are nasty indeed. Recently I found out an old friend of mine who was on the treatment for 16 weeks tried to hang himself. The meds cause depression and really mess with your mind.

I took a trip to Indiana for a week long seminar a couple weeks ago and endured it well. Even drove home (7 hours trip) right after the Thursday evening session and felt great. I remember in my younger years doing that and being wiped out for a few days.

My next big step is a some blood work I will get done on the 26th of this month (3 month post treatment). I will get a full liver panel done along with a viral load count. Please pray with me that the virus is still undetectable! If it is, I will get a final test at the 6 month mark. If found undetectable at that point I will have reached SVR (sustained viral response) and will have a 97% chance of the virus never coming back!

Looking forward to working five full weeks of Summer Camp at Common Ground Baptist Camp this summer! I will need all my energy for that for sure (and then some).

On “Operation Ditch the Bag of Cement” I hurt my back a month ago and it has prevented me from continuing on the treadmill. I am sad about that but just started back again. Man this weight thing has been a battle for the past 12 plus years. I will keep trying! 🙂

How to remove a Hard Disk GPT Protective Partition in Windows XP

Seagate-Hard-DiskI recently received a nice gift from a friend, a 1TB hard drive. Yes, I have a nice friend. I bought an external enclosure case for this drive from www.newegg.com and installed the drive in the enclosure. Next, I attempted to use the drive on my XP Professional based computer. After plugging in the USB adapter my system did recognize the drive, but I was not able to view it in “My Computer.” No drive letter was assigned to it. So off to the handy Administrative Tools -> Computer Management -> Storage -> Disk Management tool. The drive was in the list of drives but labeled “GPT Protective Partition.” There was no way available to format this drive with the Disk Management tool.

Doing some research my understanding is that this drive was formatted in a Mac or 64bit system. Thus the GPT Protective Partition. I did find a solution and I share it here:

How to change a GPT Protective Partition to one usable in Windows XP:

We will be using Windows XP diskpart tool to clean this drive which will remove all data and partition structures from the disk. Then XP’s Administrative Tools to initialize and format this GPT disk to a XP usable MBR disk.

1. Go to XP’s Command line (click on “Start Menu,” then “Run,” type in “cmd” in textbox, and hit “OK”)

Type in “diskpart” in command line.
Type in “list disk” in command line to show all disks in this machine.
Use “select” to set the focus to the specified partition, for example “select disk 7” (as mine was listed).
Use “clean” command to remove GPT disk from the current in-focus disk by zeroing the sectors of the drive.

2. Go to “Disk Management” in “Administrative Tools.”  You will see the disk is “unallocated” now. Right click on disk info, choose “Initialize Disk.”

3. Right click on disk info again and choose “Format Disk.” You can assign any unused drive letter during this step. The disk will proceed to format, depending on the disk size this will take some time. Do not turn off your computer till this step is completed.

4. When finished the drive will now be list in “My Computer” and be usable on your XP sysytem.

Warning: This procedure erase all data on the selected disk!

Week 47 TX Update – Almost Finished!

It has been one long year for me being on the HCV treatment like I am, BUT the good news is I have one week left. I just took my last injection last night and have six days of taking the pills left. I went to my liver doctor’s office last week and everything is looking good. My blood work numbers are all in the normal range now. My liver enzymes are at the best numbers they have been in thirty years. I have not said much on here the last three months for I have felt miserable. I was in “endure mode” just trying to get through the treatment. I went to work yesterday and had a good day – even stayed a couple hours later than normal to get caught up – it was a rare day. Before that I had not left my house for two weeks.  I am very much looking forward to getting off these medicines. I am very thankful for there invention and being able to even take them ($20,000 plus for the year) but I have to admit I hate the side effects and hope never to have to go through something like this again. I have found out I am not the tough guy a I personified to be (haha). Feeling like one has the flu for 47 weeks straight has been tough for sure.

A big thank you goes out to all that have helped me this year to get through this. A special thank you to my dear wife Carol who has been the greatest to me during this time. I have been grumpy and irrational many times to her and she bit her lip and walked away. She helped me with the injections each week and put up with my crazy food requests. Thank you Carol! Also I would like to give a great big thank you to my Pastor, Pastor Art Kohl (he is also my employer at the church) he has been outstanding to me and gave me great latitude with work this year. His support has been unending and he has shown me great tolerance and understanding. Thank you Pastor Kohl.

I am looking forward to getting back on tract in 2010 – things like Summer Camp at Commonground Baptist Camp and my ministry in the prison and at Church. Both where put on hold in 2009. I have learned much this year and I hope I can use that knowledge to help others for the rest of my life.