|This was taken in 1983 just before Renee met my parents|
Happy Thanksgiving everyone - I wasn't going to post this weekend but I've been thinking since my visit with Dr. Kritz yesterday and I feel moved to take a moment and praise God for what has occurred over the last 2 months. 2 months ago, I had just been released from Rex Hospital with the new knowledge that I had 2 kinds of cancer - having added 'large cell lymphoma' to 'chronic lymphocytic leukemia'. I was facing 2 rounds of what was described as a fairly harsh chemotherapy regimen (hyper-CVAD), with the added complication of pneumonia and associated symptoms. I was told that my counts would esssentially zero out, that I would be sick, that I had a 50% chance of getting an infection and ending up in the hospital, plus a high likelihood of having to have transfusions to support my blood supply. Additionally, there was a chance of having to delay the transplant while my counts recovered from the chemo.
Yesterday, Dr. Kritz pronounced me fit to travel on Monday - he was going to have me get my counts checked again on Friday and possibly respond with a shot or a transfusion to support my flight to Houston, but my counts were so strong that he said 'not necessary - you're good to go'. In my mind, this marks a transition into 'transplant mode' from 'chemo mode'. As such, I wanted to take a moment and thank God for how well these two months have gone - the blessings are many - the chemo had an immediately positive effect on my breathing, my lungs cleared, the side effects were not as bad as advertised, I did not get an infection, my counts recovered strong and soon, and I have been able to maintain my weight, just to name a few. So - thanks be to God our heavenly Father and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is more than able to do more than we can ask or imagine!
There is one more hurdle before we officially enter transplant mode, and that is that when I get to Houston, I will get a cat-scan to determine the state of my lymphoma - what kind of remission, if any, full, partial, etc. That test will be on Monday and I will get the results on Tuesday afternoon - if the lymphoma is not in a satisfactory remission, they will postpone the transplant and give me more chemo. At this point our fervent prayer is (and has been) for a complete remission and full speed ahead with the transplant. Please join us in this prayer request.
I mentioned our prayer meeting Sunday evening - if you want to joins hands with us in spirit from where you are, between 7 pm and 8pm eastern time will be the right time. If you do, I would appreciate you letting me know that you prayed with us......it will be a very special time and I would love to hear that you were with us in spirit.
Some of you have asked questions about the details and mechanics of the transplant process - I found a link at the University of Maryland medical website that is pretty comprehensive if you are interested - feel free to check it out - I did not find an equivalent resource at the MD Anderson site. God's blessings, peace, and contentment to you on this Thanksgiving Day. Dan