The Suburb Woman
Five More Weeks
Posted on November 17th, 2013

The week ended much calmer than it began.  As I shared last Sunday, Mike’s reaction to the pneumonia shot and initial radiation treatments caused swelling that needs to be controlled. 
The usual prescription is Decadron (steroids). Mike tolerated this medication fairly well prior to surgery. The main side effect was difficulty sleeping and some irritability. After brain surgery, the side effects were much different and more severe. Fortunately, as the week went on we have been able to manage swelling and pain with ibuprofen and he is off steroids completely. That is a MAJOR answer to prayer. We’ve also noticed his speech and memory has shown some improvement.
As of today (Nov. 17, 2013) Mike has finished 11 of 42 days of oral chemotherapy (31 more to go). The good news is he hasn’t experienced nausea. The first 10 days he took a Zofran (anti nausea) about 45 minutes prior to the Temodar just to be sure. Last night, we skipped the Zofran to see how he would handle the Temodar and he’s done well.
As of Friday (Nov. 15, 2013) Mike completed the seventh of 30 radiation treatments. That means he has 16 regular treatments and seven boost treatments remaining. He’s noticed his skin around the surgical area itches some and there is a little redness, but no hair loss yet.
He gets tired easier and goes to bed earlier, but nothing debilitating.  We’ve gone from night owls to turning out lights by 9 p.m.  The extra rest doesn’t hurt any of us.
We celebrated Grace’s 15th birthday this week too.  It’s hard to believe how fast time flies. My parents and memaw had dinner with us and mom made Grace a beautiful cake. It was a special time.
Both kids are doing well. We discuss our feelings and we’re honest about our fears. There have been plenty of tears as well. But we know God is with us and we converse with Him a lot as well.  Last night, Sam asked for the first time if his dad was going to die.  I told him although his dad was sick right now, the best doctors are taking care of him and we believe he is going to get better.
After his shower, Sam climbed up next to Mike in the chair.  Sam is quite loquacious and very matter-of-fact.  He asked Mike if he was going to die, and if not, when could they play chess again?  Sam also wanted to know when Mike’s brain would grow back and how much longer would he need to rest? It was a high-level conversation that ended with expressions of love, hugs and plans for a chess date.
Most days go well. Our spirits are good and our thoughts are positive.  However, a flood of emotions caught me off guard in Target today as I passed the Christmas decorations and heard music playing.  What a difference a year makes. There is nothing that says we will not have many more Christmases together, but it’s hard not to pause.
None of us are promised tomorrow or our next breaths.  Even so, it’s hard not to ask God, “Why us? Why this? Why now?”
Jesus tells us that even the sparrow in the fields are not forgotten by God. The passage goes on to say, “…not one of them will fall to ground apart from the will of our Father.”
If we are worth more to God than the sparrows that means He most certainly does not forget our lives either – “Even the hairs of your head are all counted.”  I don’t believe God wills us to fall or have difficult times any more than I would wish upon my own children heartache, loneliness and fear. If Mike and I didn’t believe this in our hearts, these days would be unbearable.
Instead, as we face to coming days and the weeks ahead, the words of a favorite hymn of both of ours comes to mind:
I sing because I’m happy,
I sing because I’m free,
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.

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