November 14, 2010

Hebrews 10:23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

Once again, I apologize that it has been so long since I have posted an update. I know that people get concerned when they don't know how I am doing. I am happy to say that I am currently doing well. But wow has it been a hard couple of months! I had always been so proud of the fact that in the last five years, I have felt stronger than most anything thrown at me. While I had experienced nausea with certain chemo regimens in the past, I would recover quickly and be on to my next adventure. Well, the last couple of months has made me rely on God in a whole different way. I have always talked about faith and trust in God, that His ways are not mine and I would never turn my back on Him. While I still believe whole heartedly in this, now I can say I have proved it to myself. Some of you have followed my journey here on this website for as long as it has been here. It would do a disservice to not talk about the hard times as well as the good. Let me assure you that no matter what I write, I will not ever give up on this fight. Sometimes we get weary and that is when I believe the biggest challenges come, but also the biggest victories if we persevere. His strength is perfect in my weakness, and let me tell you I have relied on that verse heavily.

Most of you know that I have three weeks of radiation to my brain from mid July into August. Since I am treated in Chicago, this involved living out of suitcases in a hotel. Traveling the 7 hours home on Fridays and back to CTCA on Monday mornings. It's hard on the body and the mind. My mom is so wonderful to be willing to pack the car up and drive us there week after week. This was trying as well because I had started vomiting from day 1 and continued for that 3 week timeframe. Once it started to get better, I was able to try and resume "normal"  life. Mid September I started vomiting again, as well as have an ear ache and fever. I saw doctor after doctor to diagnose the problem. No one could seem to agree what was wrong. After scans in October, I agreed to have 4 weeks of radiation started on my hip and pelvis to try and eliminate some of the pain I was having. Terrible pain. I have never experienced such bad pain before. I was still vomiting everyday and was so weak from not eating much. Thankfully, after my first 4 radiation treatments, the pain in my hip was almost completely gone. No more pain pills needed!

The Praise -Apella fundraiser was a highlight. I prayed and prayed I would be able to attend it, as I was still getting sick a lot. But God answered that prayer and I had so much fun. It was so good to be able to laugh and have fun with my family and see familiar faces. I felt at home, especially after being away for what seemed like forever. It is amazing to me how God uses people to bless and uplift you. Thank you to everyone who had any part in that day. (Check out Praise-Apella's Christmas concert schedule at

I continued to see doctor after doctor to try and see why I was still vomiting. That was my only symptom that remained. But I was too weak to really even walk around. An ear nose throat doctor concluded that my left ear drum is damaged from brain radiation and wouldn't cause vomiting. It really doesn't even bother me at all anymore. I saw a GI doctor that said my esophagus and stomach look fine. I had an ultra sound of my abdomen to check my gall bladder. All fine. It was thought that I may have been sick initially from a bug and then being on a new chemo with radiation may have worsened it. I finished my first round of my new chemo, and also the 4 weeks of radiation about a week ago. And I have slowly been able to eat more with no vomiting. I feel stronger everyday. I still struggle from time to time but I am so thankful more than anything to be home. I have an appointment with my oncologist November 30 and then I won't have to be seen again until January. Yay!

I have been in such a battle over the last few weeks. In those hard times, it would be so easy to not see where God is. To question "why" or "how much more". The only thing I can say to that is not to give in. As I said earlier, the greatest victories can be won when things seem the hardest if we continue to trust.

One day when we were driving out to CTCA, I was having one of those moments where I just didn't feel like I could be in the car anymore, dealing with the pain and discomfort. A song came on that I have posted before, but I felt like it was from God. I am posting it again.

Before the Morning by Josh Wilson

Thank you so much for all of your prayers and encouragement. This is another battle where we are the overcomers. (And my hair has started to grow back too!!)

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