Merry Christmas from the Dyes!
It’s been longer than expected since our last blog post, but such is life as things return to a new “normal”. It feels like a lifetime ago that we were going to Seattle weekly and Rachel was enduring the physical trial of chemo. And yet, I just got the call from the facility and we are schedule to return January 2nd. Nine days before we dive back in for the consolidation phase of treatment. For now, we enjoy this time we have with family and friends as Rachel continues to grow stronger each day.
We had one more visit to the ER last week because a clot had formed in the access line for Rachel’s port. It was not necessarily an “emergency” situation as much as it needed medical intervention and nowhere else was open at the time to take care of it. There is an ease associated with the ER for us now that is a little disconcerting. It no longer induces anxiety as much as it’s “just another Friday”. We see many of the same nurses and doctors, we even get the same room (20) and know our way around. I hope we never have to return…but its not all that bad if we did.
Remember the car that lost all it’s lugnuts? Well, the transmission went out on Sunday last week. That created a more stressful situation for me than the emergency room did a few days before. Searching for a vehicle, contacting sellers, determining our budget, it was enough to put me in a bad mood for a couple days. Thankfully, God provides despite our bad attitudes and He led us to the perfect vehicle at a steal of a price just when we needed it. Rachel is now driving around her dream car at the price of the budget cars we were shopping, which means nothing in light of eternity but is still a bonus for the “now”.
As a project manager by trade, I have often told people that this trial is the “project” for which I was born. As we look to the next six weeks of treatment, my mind has been mulling over how to best plan for the inevitable difficulties that come with weekly trips to Seattle, the kids getting shipped around from caretaker to caretaker, meal planning, and symptom management. We have worked out family members to stay with our kids as we take our weekly trips, but would like to ask for help with two hot meals per week for the day of treatment (to allow the babysitter to just focus on the kids) as well as the day after. In addition, having a volunteer to clean house once a week (probably the day after treatment day) would be a huge blessing. I will be working with the men and women in our church who are responsible for coordinating these types of ministries but also wanted to say it here as I know many have asked for ways to help who are not associated with our local church. If you have any questions or would like to help, please message me on Facebook or send me an email (at the gmail link at the bottom of this page). And let me be clear, we have been so abundantly blessed by our tribe that no one should feel an ounce of pressure to do anything more for us. God has provided and we have no doubt He will continue to do so.
For those who have asked for the schedule in order to focus their prayers on the day of treatment, here it is:
After this round, we will slow down to just the Avastin every third week for the next 9 months, with a break for the reattachment surgery around March 2019.
As we hunker down for Christmas tomorrow, we are overwhelmed with gratitude for all that we have been through this past year. Last Christmas, we had no idea what was waiting for us in 2018, we weren’t cancer free we were just cancer blind, but this year we look back at the battle and see the victory that has been won. For the first time in who knows how many years, we are ACTUALLY cancer free, and that is incredible to think about.