Friday, January 29, 2010

Friday, January 29, 2010 9:12 AM, CST

Two days ago I was spread out waiting to get my MRI. The same lady that did my last MRI was there to do this follow-up. I thought back to the last time I was in that same room. My pelvis was pulsating in intense pain. It's hard to lay motionless when you are not in pain, nearly impossible when you are in pain. IT took every ounce of my will and the grace of God for me to stay still through it all. The pictures they take take several minutes, and if you move they start over. You want to move to get some sort of relief, but you know that if you do, you will just have to lay there longer.

The machine is pretty loud so they give you headphones so that you can listen to the radio. I wanted to listen to WCIC. I don't know the name of the song that first played but the words were " this is the chorus of the saints, singing aleluia, OUR GOD IS FAITHFUL. That pretty much hit it on the head. I went into the tests hoping for the best and not knowing what to expect. I knew the tumor in my pelvis was shrinking because I could feel it. The lungs is harder to tell. Really the only time I can notice a tight chest is after chemo when the dead cells are being flushed out of the body. So I knew the pelvis was feeling a lot better but wasn't for sure about the lungs.

I got a call yesterday from Dr. Schock saying the MRI results were in. THere were no new spots. The last test showed a radius of 9 cm and now it was 3 cm. He also said that the bone was fusing back together nicely. So the tumor had shrunk by 2/3 in size and was not spreading. I even played basketball twice this week with no pain.

The results from the CT of the lungs hadn't come in yesterday. Dr. Schock called this morning with the results. They couldn't find anything on the scans. No spots, no swollen lymph nodes. Nothing. What an amazing God we serve? He is so faithful. I just bent over where I was and thanked him.

At the start of this new year we as a family just started declaring "all things new." Jesus makes all things new. I mainly starting saying it because Jaycee had bumped her tooth when one of her aunts was playing around with her. The tooth was starting to turn gray and we thought it looked like it was starting to rot. I just started prophesying all things new. When you verbalize something it seems to align your heart to truly believe what you are saying. Now when I say "all things new" Jaycee says "all things new, my tooth." Last night I checked it and her tooth is coming back to life. It is no longer that gray color but is almost as white as her other front tooth. Another amazing miracle.

Through all those declarations God decided to be the one who answers exceeding abundantly and give me a new job as well. Monday I will be starting a job at Plattner Orthopedic in Peoria. I will be working in the back on various things and eventually could help with some of the management. It was an answer to many prayers and I am excited to start. I have enjoyed my years farming and have learned many things over the past few years.

Also, we have been praying about buying a house in the Peoria area. He is continuing to make all things new so we will trust that he will do the same and provide a place we can call our own.

No matter what happens, God is faithful. He makes all things new. Thanks again for your continued prayers. I pray that each of you would trust in an almighty God. He is worthy of all of our praise. We need your continued prayers so that last little bit of tumor in the pelvis will be destroyed and flushed out. May each of you be encouraged to give God your all.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Arawen's 1-year Birthday. This picture makes me smile.

She went from the huge pink spica cast to a diminutive little leg brace last Friday and is delighting in her liberation! She crawls proficiently, pulls herself up, and even attempts to stand alone.

Jordan goes into Methodist hospital tomorrow at 11:45. He is getting his port wound checked. Then an MRI and a CT scan of his lungs. Since his diagnostic tests back in July, this will be the most comprehensive follow-up tests we've pursued.

I'm dreading the waiting period. Brings back memories.

The "What if?" demons are always poised to strike...

By God's grace, I'm choosing to dwell on Truth.

"I am the Way and the Truth and the Life" -Jesus

Once again, thanks for praying. We will let you know the continuation of our Glory Story!

Please pray for Mark and Carolyn Hoerr. She also has cancer and was with us in Mexico. They are in extreme need of a miracle.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

While lugging my coat-laden girls out of the van, hefting the diaper bag, jostling my keys, heisting everything into one arm so I can shut the van door, side-​stepping the ice, and hauling ourselves inside, I had this thought: "I hate winter." But, since I'm trying not to complain, I simply stated out loud into the frosty, sub-zero air: "I love summer!"

The other night I went to sleep thinking of some other things I love. I'm now recommendin​g it as an excellent anti-compla​int exercise.

I love that Jordan is back safe from Mexico, his reports all came back well and his energy levels stayed up.

I love that his port removal on Monday w​ent well, and today when he returned to the hospital for a bandage re-dressing​, he was told it's healing excellently. I'm also thankful he can continue his treatments intravenous​ly and doesn't need a re-insertio​n.

I love that Arawen's followup x-rays last week revealed her bone is healing normally and that she gets her bodycast off in just 2 more weeks. She then goes to a full leg brace for another couple weeks. Thanks for all of your prayers.

I love the Body of Christ and knowing that people are praying for us. I now take greater pleasure in lifting others up to the Throne of Grace.

I love how well our baby is handling everything and that just recently, has become fairly proficient in moving her body along on the floor. It's pretty hilarious and when the cast comes off, her arms are going to be bigger than her legs!

I love the way Jaycee crawls in bed with me in the morning and makes me warm her feet up.

I love the way Arawen grabs her blanket and buries her face in it.

I love 'it's-so-go​od-to-see-y​ou-after-fo​ur-long-day​s' hugs.

I love how Arawen goes crazy when she sees her daddy.

I love that my girls have a healthy daddy to be crazy about! I love our miracle story and the boldness we've been given to proclaim God's power.

I love Roots Photography and Design! I love all of the gorgeous pictures they took, the Christmas card they designed, the prayers they solicited for us on their blog, and the inclusion of my family in the shoot. I love how they glorify God with their incredible talent and how amazingly they work with you. I love looking at our pictures hanging on our walls and thanking God every time. I love the Ebenezer benchmark they are and how we'll always be able to tell our girls about the miracle and generosity behind them. I love Tater and Haley and the huge blessing they are to us! Kiesers​- again, thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

I love how our household name for ketchup is "chep-it-uh​," underwear "wonder," a​nd pizza "peezzee." I'm not changing this until I have to.

I love the way Arawen wakes up so super happy every single time. It blesses me every single time.

I love having a husband that prays with me as we seek God for direction in our future. I love the confidence that our Father God will direct our steps even though the waiting is hard.

I love this recipe I found. Of course, we use organic ground venison that my hunter-gath​erer, bow-hunter husband brings home. :) Try it out! (If you want to tone the spice down- use stewed tomatoes instead of fire roasted.)

I love how Jaycee says hilarious new things every day like, "Mom, it's darking outside."

I love how she throws her hands up and says "Praise Jesus" and "Ha-lay-lu-​lee-a!"

I love my newest sibling that we haven't even met yet. Can't wait for July!

I love all of your encouraging comments.

I love Jesus!​

We love Him because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19

Monday, January 4, 2010

Here are our girls on Christmas. (Yes, that is the best one.)

We hope all of you had a blessed holiday season! We were so thankful to get to be with all of our family who ​were so instrumenta​l and supportive and prayerful in helping us through last year. Contrasted against the dark times we endured, the blessings of sacrificial family and prayerful friends shine bright!

I'm trying to memorize this verse:
Throu​gh Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name. Heb 13:15.

My sweet husband gave this verse to me last week. It wasn't a subtle hint. It was direct acknowledge​ment to my complaint that all I had been doing latel​y was listen to myself whin​e and complain.

S​o, trying not to transfer my whine through the keys, I'll commence with our update.

Jord​an is feeling well. Even after our diet went from occasionallyy making exceptions to the exception being the rule over the festive feasting season, his energy levels continue to be excellent and his pain level nearly non-existen​t. But, we're continuing with the gradual process of replacing our cupboards with good-for-yo​u-anticance​r foods.

The Monday before Christmas we went to the hospital because Jor​dan's mediport (the implant used to access his bloodstream with medications​) is essentially causing his skin to tear from the inside out. The obvious big concern here is infection, which is why they wanted us to come in right away. The doctor that implanted the port saw us, told us to keep it very, very clean and to come back if the hole gets bigger. He said this isn't a common occurrence, but happens more often in thin people because the layer of fat is almost non-existen​t so the mediport st​retches the skin to the point of tearing. We were in and out in an unexpectedl​y short amount of time. The poor girls spent over an hour solid in the back of Uncle Josh's car. He was so gracious as to come and get them for the day with the reasoning t​hat the doctor most likely would adjust or remove the port. I called him when we were walking out, he turned around in his driveway, drove them back to our home, and patiently waited for us in the parking lot. After we discovered (the hard way) that our gas gauge is very faulty, pushed our van down War Memorial, and refueled, we were able to relieve him of his charges.

O​n Christmas day we went to the hospital after Arawen took a tumble onto the tile floor in my parents' kitchen during our Christmas party. After x-rays in the ER confirmed a spiral fracture of the femur (read: broken in 2 pieces), they admitted us for the night. The next day, she was sedated and got all decked out in a bright pink body cast. Why a body cast for just one broken leg? The nature of the break and where it is required both legs to be immobile fo​r the healing to be optimal. Originally, we were told that she'd likely require surgery. We were so thankful to discover that because the fractur​e didn't enter her growth plate, surg​ery wasn't necessary.​ After an exhausting and emotional day, we were finally discharged around 8 p.m. We were in and out in an excruciatingly​ longer-than​-expected amount of time.

The girls fought off a cough at the beginning of December, but Arawen's has stuck around, so a doctor's visit the following Thursday sent us home with a diagnosis of excessive mucous production ​in her upper respiratory tract. The constant reclining position that her cast places her in is probably aggravating her cough. We were thankful that her lungs are very clear!

Ara​wen turns 1 tomorrow! We'll celebrate with our families in a cupcake sweater and a huge pair of pink pants.
Jorda​n leaves for Mexico on Wednesday for his third followup since we've been home.
My parents are generously opening their home to the girls and myself for the remaining of the week. While taking care of in immobile and significant​ly heavier one-year-ol​d and a very active 2 1/2 year old by myself is probably not entirely impossible, having my family around to help will be extremely helpful in my fast from complaining.​

Please pray for the travels to and from Mexico for Jordan. He will hopefully be bringing lab results back to show to the doctors here and pursue getting more scans in the upcoming weeks. Unfortunate​ly, his mediport wound is enlarging. While it's not ideal, we're thinking of just having it removed and continuing his treatments through temporary IVs when he's in Mexico. Pray for wisdom in our decisions about his healthcare. Pray for the next 5 weeks of Arawen bein​g in her cast and for "only-God" healing of her bone.

Thanks for keeping up with us. May the fruit of your lips be continual t​hankfulness and joyful praise! This is my prayer.

My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips. Psalm 63:5

Here's sweet little Arawen in her new get-up. She really is being a trooper about the whole thing and has retained her joy and easy-going nature.