In my last post I energetically reported on a trial that Dr O was pretty excited about. And she still is! But, for me, not yet…
The other patient has been waiting for 6-7 weeks and we found out she was technically ahead of me so I didn’t ‘make the cut.’ With this call/news, I had some tears. They were unexpected. I am sad because I had in mind ‘that was the plan…’ (and you can ask Scott or any of my friends or any of the counsellors I’ve paid hundreds of dollars to but, for better and worse, this girl likes a plan and order and not waiting…) and I had to redirect and rewire my mind. Things change real quickly in this crazy cancer world so it shouldn’t surprise me as much as it does. I think I’m still ‘recovering’ from realizing that we are already changing the plan (again) after 2-3 months or so of this chemo and it seems to me like we are burning through the handful of available treatments a little faster than I expected once she doesn’t think they are still effective for me. Also, Dr O is so hopeful and excited about these trials that it’s contagious. I also cried because there was a sweet moment where the Lord whispered in my heart that He loves me and He loves her (whoever her is…) and that maybe she needs the trial more than I do?! So, I surrendered. Through tears of sweetness knowing that He is good and trustworthy, I surrendered.
And then I went to my happy place. A massage. And even happier, it was free. Used my little punch card and took my ‘free tenth’ massage and the ghetto-fabulous greatness of Sole Therapy. Then, I got back in my car and almost immediately got a text from one of my ‘breasties’ Sterling about one of the girls I met in October of 2013 at a Stars game honoring breast cancer. She had just been diagnosed and she had just had a baby. And, now, she has died. At age 30. With 2 little boys. Though I’ve known that if I make friends with other breast cancer girls and even join friends to start a ‘pink not grey’ support group for young patients (average age for diagnosis is 62) then I can expect that we will have to watch some of our friends die. But Ashleigh was the first. I haven’t seen her since that hockey game but we’ve texted (we connected over my inflammatory because that’s what she had too) and her ‘breastie’ (seems like God pairs many of us up with someone walking a similar road at the same time) is another girl named Shari who I know better and comes to our meetings (and she is the one who had broken back which Lord used to prompt/prepare me to not ignore my back pain). So, long winded way of telling you that when I got back in car and had learned only hour earlier that I didn’t make the trial, the news that Ashleigh had died while I was on vacation came with a crushing weight. She knew and loved Jesus and spoke boldly of his grace but wow…
And if you just need a good cry or want to clean our your tear ducts or make sure you are human with a beating heart, you can read some of their story and her grace at myjourneywithibc.blogspot.com. But grab some tissues before you get settled to read.
And on top of all of that somebody in FL stole my credit card number and went to town online at Macy’s and at Champs and hooked themselves up (literally?) with $364 at Comcast. Nobody. I mean nobody has time for that.
So let’s just say it wasn’t really my happiest week.
But, in encouraging news, Dr O has already gone to bat for me with the drug company who hosts the trial and initially declined me for participation (based on disease and past treatments). In some fine print technical reading she challenged their conclusions and they came back to her and gave me initial approval for the trial and I am first in line for the next accepted group of patients – she expects 6-8 weeks. And, again, she called me after hours to talk through options and has a plan to put me on 2 drugs that work similarly to the trial I was on (but it had 3 drugs – one in a lower dosage which she didn’t like) and can give me greater dosages. And these drugs have a relatively fast ‘wash out period’ so as soon as there is an opening I can stop these, said the requisite amount of time for them to clear my system, and start the trial. And, in the meantime, maybe my hair can start growing back! It comes out in fistfuls with ever ywashing or brushing (which makes me limit both) and let me tell you what isn’t super attractive … Super thin hair that isn’t super clean or brushed! Now, maybe my hair will get a break and these drugs can beat up on another part of my body for awhile (most likely my energy).
I appreciate the prayers for me to get on the trial and now you can pray that we will continue to patiently wait and graciously surrender. I also would love for you to pray for Ashleigh’s family. And, like hers, when my day comes (whether that’s next year or the next decade) I ask you in advance to pray for Scott and Lincoln and my mom(s) and grandmother and family and friends. Death is never good. Gods plan was always for life and that was/is painfully interrupted by sin and death. For me, death won’t be permanent – merely a gateway to enter the presence of my Savior and live with Him there. But until Scott and Linc and family and friends join me, it will be permanent for them. They will need much prayer for supernatural strength and peace and joy. I thank you in advance for your care and prayers for them.