These past few days have been a very strange mix of normal and surreal. There were many times when things felt like they’ve always felt. JD and I drove off to Cleveland Thursday afternoon and it kind of felt like we were off on one of our little mini vacations. We like to take 2 or 3 days away every now and again to recharge and remember what it’s like to be a couple. We sleep in and eat well and talk (or not) as we explore wherever we happen to be.
It all felt very normal. Except for the fact that we had a binder full of doctor’s notes and lab test and CD’s with images of my insides lying on the back seat. Except that instead of exploring a museum on Friday we were instead finding our way to the cancer center at the Cleveland Clinic. My heart was pounding as we walked through those doors. I had had a restless night the night before. Truth be told, it was kind of a relief to have a place where I could really just sob my heart out without fear that the girls might hear me. It felt cathartic. And okay. I’ve stopped feeling that I have to be this super human tower of strength. I don’t think my crying means that I’m doubting God’s sovereignty or His care for me. I think He’s okay with a little breakdown every now and again.
It was a long day but very good. All my doctors are in agreement with the plan to proceed with chemotherapy starting either Tuesday or Wednesday of this week. I will be getting a very aggressive 3 drug combo to be repeated every 3 weeks. At this point there is too much disease to give me radiation safely. If the chemo works well and shrinks the size and number of tumors then we will add radiation later.
We also found out about a phase three trial that I may be eligible for later on. There is another genetic marker that they will be testing my cancer cells for and if it is positive for this particular mutation then we will likely be enrolled in the trial. Of course we are hopeful that the chemo will work so well that I won’t need anything else, but it is great to know that there are more options out there for me.
We left feeling very confident in my treatment plan and ready to move forward. It was so comforting to know that all of these smart minds are all working together to figure out the very best treatment for me. That I am not just another case but that they all want the very best outcome for me.
And it was wonderful to be away for a bit from home. JD and I were able to just be together. There has been so much activity around here lately that it sometimes is hard to carve out time to really talk. We ate at a couple of really great places. Lucky’s Cafe had this great potato cheddar soup that was out of this world. And we also got a great suggestion for dinner that night from one of the waitstaff. If you are ever in Cleveland, be sure to go to Bar Cento. Order a Belgian beer and the fries and know what a little bit of heaven on earth feels like.
We agree with Drew Carey.
- Rash on my face would continue to heal. It’s getting better but not fast enough to suit me. And it’s really painful.
- That my first chemo treatment will go smoothly and side effects will be minimal. Truthfully, I’m most afraid of the nausea.
- That my mama will be comforted. She went home yesterday and handed me off to my very capable and loving mother-in-law but it was hard on her to leave me. (And hard on me to be left)
This is actually a post all on it’s own that I want to write soon, but we have seen many, many people have their hearts turned toward the Lord since this all started. I can’t tell you what that means to us. It has been simply amazing.