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Thursday, April 7, 2011

MD Anderson Visit – Surgical / Oncologist Follow-up

We spent all day the 6th down at MD.  For about 3 appointments!  That’s ok, because everyone was extremely happy about how well Felicia was doing in her surgical recovery.

First appointment, at 9am, was a resting EKG.  It didn’t take long, so once Felicia was done we headed downtown on the train to pick up some liquid vitamin (because she has problems with pills!).  I believe the train ride made her sleepy!

As soon as we got back to MD, we headed up to the waiting room for her next appointment.  It wasn’t until 1:50, so she took nap and I read.  It was an exciting couple of hours!  Around 2, we met with Dr. Wagner (well I say that, first we met with the nurse and then the happy PA Whitney.  She is a young lady who enjoys her job, which I can imagine sometimes gets pretty tough.) and Dr. Wagner was very pleased with how things were going.  She gave us the pathology report and explained how much they took out (3.1 cm) and that there were no cancer cells left and the lymph nodes were clean.  Yay!

Next at 2:50 was the medical oncologist, which ended up being at 3:30 because they were running behind.  Dr Koenig was also very happy with the pace of recovery.  She explained more of what the chemo (a 3 drug cocktail) would do and all of the side effects.  I guess they have to tell you that just in case the worst happens, but wow, some of the side effects are scary!  We also set up a date for the first chemo treatment, which will be on the 25th of April.  When we started out, that seemed pretty far away, but it will be here before you know it.  She also prescribed something for nausea, which led to a wait in the pharmacy and us not leaving til almost 5.

I think me driving in the traffic scared Felicia a little, but we made it home just fine and I didn’t have to shoot anyone!  On the way home she asked me something that reminded me how human we all are.  She said, “after they explain all of that, do you ever feel like it is happening to someone else?  Like you’re outside your body?”   Of course I have, on and off the whole time!

It reminded me again how easy it is for us to pick the worry and fear back up from the foot of the cross.  God told me to give it to him in Philippians 4:4-7:

"Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again: Rejoice!  Let you gentleness be evident to all.  The Lord is near.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will gaurd your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
We are a little like a dog.  We bury that bone, but still want to dig it up and chew on it again….and again…..and again!

Psalms 121 reminds me that our strength comes from God:

1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
   where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD,
   the Maker of heaven and earth.
 3 He will not let your foot slip—
   he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
   will neither slumber nor sleep.
 5 The LORD watches over you—
   the LORD is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
   nor the moon by night.
 7 The LORD will keep you from all harm—
   he will watch over your life;
the LORD will watch over your coming and going
   both now and forevermore.

Our friend Cynthia told me the easy part is the surgery, now comes the hard part…the chemo.  Cynthia (put Cynthia in your prayers too!) should know, she has been fighting the beast for almost 20 years.  So continue to pray for Felicia, that she will rely on God for her strength.  After all, He will watch over her coming and going!  Pray also for our family, I think the girls will be most affected when the hair starts to come out.  She continues to amaze me with her wit and grace.   Speaking of her wit, I offered to shave my head (when hers starts to come out) and she said, “no babe, I have seen your head…it needs hair on it!”  How can I not live up to that?

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