Saturday, July 18, 2009

Janie's July 09 Update

Here is a note that Janie sent to our friends who pray for her/us. Sent on on July 17, 2009:

Hello to all my praying friends –
It has been a long and adventurous 7 months. Many of you I see at church or out and about and can give updates but I know not everyone knows the latest in the Booth household. I’ll try to be quick. ;)
January found me getting CT and bone scans since my tumor marker numbers were rising. They found two small places: my left hip and my upper spine. So each place had 14 treatments of radiation. Chemo stops when radiation is taking place so I didn’t have any drugs for a couple of weeks. My lower left back was kind of hurting, which we thought was due from the radiation. But, alas, it was due to kidney stones! Which led to two more CT scans. March found me at the ENT trying to find out why my voice is so raspy. Turns out the meds have thinned my vocal cords so I may sound sultry and sexy for a while! April showers brought on. . . .shingles! Just a swatch on my back and a bit on my tummy. We actually laughed – it seemed so ridiculous! What next??? And of course this is all in-between trips to Houghton College and graduation parties and ceremonies and a nephew’s wedding!
Now I’ve been on a drug for about 15 weeks and it’s my least favorite one so far. Just feeling generally lousy and tired. In June my tumor marker numbers had dropped almost 20 points but in July they had risen 10 points again. This past Monday I innocently went in for my regular treatment but when I told them how lousy I was feeling things really started to happen. That same day I had a brain
MRI and a CT scan. That night at 6:00 I finally got the results: two small brain lesions, a spot on my liver that’s been there for a year, and two tiny rice size cancer spots in my lungs. Needless to say we were all a bit shell-shocked. Another “new” normal!
At this time I’m having radiation to my entire brain (I know what you’re thinking – if I’m crazy NOW what will I possibly be like when I’m finished with that. . .!) My radiologist feels that if he does that he probably won’t have to ever go back in and do more radiation on the brain. So it takes care of this current problem and any others that might have cropped up. I’ve had 3 out of the 14 treatments and it really is quite quick. When I’m done with that I’ll start chemo again. My oncologist promised he would be calling around the world to see what the next best step would be.
It certainly is a strange place to be although most of the time I feel very peaceful. There is also sorrow that comes from asking too many “what ifs” and it is incredibly unproductive so I do my best to take “every thought captive” 2 Corinthians 10:5. I have no doubt that God has a plan that is for His glory and our good. I don’t know what people do who do not have an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. Hebrews 6:19 I’m told I may lose my hair due to radiation and that it might not grow back. The worst part about that is how people on the street react to me – an obvious cancer patient. Just remember that if my hair is gone it means I’m actually in better shape than today since the brain lesions will be gone! So don’t feel sorry for me – I’m still me! I am not afraid to talk about cancer and I know how awkward it is when you want to say something but don’t know what to say. Don’t worry!
Thank you for your prayers and thoughts for our family – it is THE reason I am here 5 years after my initial diagnosis. I have no plans on checking out of this life anytime soon! We are bringing Rebecca and Dan to Houghton on August 27 and I would be love to be feeling great so I can enjoy all the angst that goes with leaving your firstborn at school. I will try to be better about keeping in touch – don’t hesitate to email. I’m not great on the phone because it tires my voice. Love to everyone and a giant THANKS! Janie
If we could only look upon a difficult crisis as an occasion of bringing out, on our behalf, the sufficiency of divine grace, it would enable us to preserve the balance of our souls and to glorify God, even in the deepest waters. C.H. Mackintosh The Red Sea Rules

Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed: save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise.
Jeremiah 17:14

1 comment:

  1. Praise God for you, Janie! Your faith inspires me. I will be praying. So glad to have a better understanding of what is happening and how I can pray more specifically.