My experience has been 8 cycles of Gem + Cisplatin until the side effects became severe. This is primarily neuropathy. At that point the treatment had been very effective but I was told that was the end for that combo. Each cycle was 2 + 1 off which seems to be the standard thing.
There was a 6 week holiday followed by Gem + Carboplatin ever two weeks. The cancer is now increasing at a fairly slow rate, but obviously not going to be succesful in the end. I am currently looking for alternatives primarily through clinical trials.
After one year I am still working and get to play an occasional round of golf. The psychological effects are sometimes difficult but after the initial shock of diagnosis, not overwhelming. I still hold hope for a magic bullet but the glacial pace of research doesnt holdmuch hope.