Thursday, April 26, 2012

Awesome God!

With Dr. Keating yesterday
        No one knows why God heals some and not others.  One of the hardest things about being a Christian is accepting that disease, decay, and death are part and parcel of our fallen world.  In fact, it is only by the unmerited grace of God that we draw each breath.  The great news is that even for those of us who face disease and the possibility of an early death (and indeed everyone), God has provided something infinitely better than this earthly life for those who respond to His call.  Additionally, as Romans 8:29-30 says, He works for our eternal good even as we suffer trials.
        With that preamble, I am very happy to report that Renee and I received great news from my doctor yesterday at MD Anderson.  Specifically, my PET and CT scans were clean - no sign of active lymphoma.  This means the lymphoma is in complete remission (CR).  I mentioned in a previous post how deadly Richter's transformation is - and it is the lymphoma that is usually responsible for the mortality rates.  So - this was fantastic news.  The test result for CLL (bone marrow biopsy) is not available yet.  I hope to have that within a few days at most.  Of course I will share that with you when I receive it.  I think I have indicated before that if there is less than 5% CLL, we will not panic, as there are several options in terms of how to handle that.  Still, of course we are praying for another "clean" result.
        Dr. Chitra Hosing is my transplant doctor and she deserves a great deal of credit.  Still, I look at Dr. Keating as the guy who saved my life - he called the play, which was a low-percentage play, but it was the only possible path to a cure.  With some heavenly help, he threaded the needle and, hopefully, has given me a new lease on life.  I said to him, "I can't thank you enough", and his response was "yes you can, and you have, just by coming here to see me" (I didn't have an appointment).
        Another thing I am certain of is that all of your prayers were heard.  I can't thank you enough for the outpouring of support and prayer.  I know that this battle is far from over - but as I have said before, it's a battle I can't lose.  More soon.....

with heartfelt gratitude - Dan and Renee

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Back to Houston - 125 Day Restaging

"Matt's lilac"
Dear brothers, sisters, friends - 

Renee and I are flying to Houston today for my '125 day' re-staging.  There are a lot of butterflies this morning for both of us.  The 2 key tests are the bone marrow biopsy which will show whether there is any remaining CLL in my marrow.  Zero is best, less than 5% is OK.  The other major test will be the PET scan, which will determine whether there is any active lymphoma.  We need a 'zero' on this one.  We should have results by Wednesday mid-day, as we meet with my transplant doctor, Dr. Hosing, at  9:30 am central time that day.

Thanks for your prayers, and may God be glorified in everything that is to come.

"And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose."

Dan and Renee