This morning the nurse practitioner from the Cancer Center called with my scan results. I was pleasantly surprised that I didn’t have to try to track the results down, and I’m sure that I owe a huge “thank you” to the nurses who took care of me Monday and Tuesday when I got my Neupogen shots. They were very concerned that I might have to wait for a long time to hear about the results because my doctor was out, and said that they would talk to the nurse practitioner, which they obviously did.
The results were good. Not perfect, but good. The lymph nodes were gone (PRAISE GOD!!), and my neck was clean. The mass on my adrenal gland showed “significant response to treatment”. (I was really hoping to hear it was gone, but significant response is good.) The one blip is that there were two small spots on my lung, which are too small to biopsy. The nurse practitioner showed them to two different oncologists, since my oncologist is out this week, and both were of the opinion that they were probably not cancer. But at this point we just have to watch them and see what happens. We are definitely praising God for the positive outcome.
In the meantime, I am just trying to struggle through until the effects of the Neupogen wear off. My blood count was extremely low. It’s always low after chemo, but this time was the lowest it’s been, and looking at the numbers, I don’t think it can get a lot lower. There is a threshold number that I have to reach to be able to get chemo on Friday, so on Monday and Tuesday I get shots of Neupogen. It sends the bone marrow into hyperdrive, creating white blood cells at a highly accelerated rate, which is a good thing. However, while that is happening, my bones, particularly my femurs, hip joints, pelvis, backbone, and skull, feel like they are breaking from the inside out. I can hardly stand up and there is no comfortable position. Thankfully I am able to take Vicodin again, it does take the edge off. These few days after Neupogen are the biggest challenge of the entire cancer experience, and it gets worse each time.
Once again, I go back to a verse I seem to hang onto a lot recently. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:8-10
I know how weak I am. I know how easy it is for me to become irritable, tearful, selfish… But if in that weakness, I take just that one moment to turn to Jesus and say “help”, then his strength can pour through me. My weakness is so real – just ask my husband! But God’s strength is so much stronger. I know that he will get me through. I know that if I turn to him in my weakness, all of this can be for his glory and my strengthening for whatever future plan God has for us.