Thursday, January 12, 2012

Cancer...What I have learned..

Hi all, update time again.  It has been a while, and Sharon posted yesterday on Facebook that she and Hannah were at the clinic and some people freaked out.  No more freaking out, here is where we go from here.

As you know, Hannah made it out of the hospital before Christmas.  Her Doctor is amazed by that, she had fully expected her to be in PCH until after Christmas.  She had one week of outpatient chemo the week before Christmas and tolerated it pretty well and was able to get out and do a few things with friends.

She was at PCH yesterday to have a bone marrow aspiration and a lumbar puncture with a small amount of chemo injected in to her spine,  this is normal and part of the protocol.  The chemo injected into the spine is an extra precaution to fight against leukemia. Most leukemia patients with the other types –AML or ALL have 30 lumbar punctures so Hannah has been very lucky to only have to have 3, especially since it took 3 tries yesterday to get it.  The bone marrow aspiration was pulled from the front hip area this time which was new, and painful.

Provided that the bone marrow and spinal fluid are clear, there is no reason to believe that they will not be, she will begin her monthly maintenance.  Starting next Friday she will start new oral medication and to to clinic once a month.  The following week she will have her broviac catheter removed from her chest.  And oh yeah, because she is finished with chemo her hair should start to grow back.

To say that I have learned from this experience would be an understatement.  While I would never wish anyone to ever go through this, while I can not call it a blessing, I can say that we have been truly blessed.

Below is a list of things that I have learned or have been reaffirmed during the last 6 months. (no particular order, and not all of them)

The big things in life help us to focus on the little things.

God is in control

Tears, generated by fear, being scared, anger, joy or gratitude are a good thing.

Laughter truly is the best medicine

I love my family more than I ever thought I could.

My wife is a stud!

Watching "Big Bang Theory" with your kids is fun.

Each moment is precious, savor it.

Toughness is not measured by how many hits you can take, it is measured by how you move forward after each hit.

Friends are truly a gift.

My kids are the second most important gift that I have, being second only to the Gift of Salvation that I have received through Jesus.  I need to cherish both of these gifts more.