Tuesday, September 22, 2009

My Journey Through Treatment

Thank you all for praying for me these last few weeks of this crazy journey! I appreciate so much all of your words of encouragement and your support.

I have to start by saying The Lord is good ALL the time and ALL the time the Lord is good. These last 3 weeks of my journey have been very hard for me. The Lord has been very patient with me as he is teaching me to be patient! A lot of unanswered questions about treatment have been running circles in my mind. I have had to continually give them over to the Lord because it seems too great to handle and the Lord hadn't given it to me to deal with quite yet. Until today!

Jeff and I spent the day together in San Francisco awaiting our appointments at UCSF. It was a sweet and fun time together as I always enjoy precious time with my sweet hub. My first appointment was with Beth who is our genetic counselor. We went over a lot of information about my family history and whether or not I qualified for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene test. After a lot of talking she thought it would be a great idea that I participate in this testing and that it would help me see if it is necessary that I have my ovaries removed. This test is also good for future use with family members if I do in fact test positive. I took the test today and will find out those results in 3 weeks. After leaving that room I entered into the exam room of my oncologist Dr. Moasser. I am sitting on the exam table in my beautiful fashion gown ( why they put me in it anymore I will never know because they never even exam me) and Jeff is making me giggle as usual. Very relaxed atmosphere and lots of laughter. Knock knock in walks Dr. Moasser. He says "How are you? O.k. let's get down to business about your oncotype test". I'm thinking to myself lets laugh and giggle some more. He opens my chart and I am hanging on his every move and every word. He begins to tell me that they measure this test in points from 1 - 50. My result came back at 36. Before I could say a word he says to me " that number is way to high way to high you need to have chemo." I said are you sure? Now this guy has gone through numerous years of medical schooling and extensive research. He looked at me like I was out of my mind and said yes there is no question about it! In my mind I am thinking "Lord I prayed specifically and believing I wouldn't have to go through it" and He brought to my mind the time I spent with Him this last week. I have been praying that His will be done with me and not mine. I gave Him my life and circumstances to do whatever He needs to do. I have been praying that I will be OK with whatever He calls me to do. I have been praying that I would get a very clear answer! He gave me the scripture John 2:5b "Whatever He says to you do it"!!!! As my mind came back into focus about what Dr. Moasser had just said to me I started to ask questions about the types of chemo there are now and side effects. He told me I have 2 options. The first is to do 4 treatments every 3 weeks for 3 months. With that I will lose all of my hair. The second option is to do 8 treatments every 3 weeks for 6 months. This treatment is only a 2 percent chance of hair loss and a 10 percent chance of hair thinning. As vain as I can be I chose to do the 6 month process so that I wouldn't lose my hair. All of this chemo is a preventative treatment so that my cancer doesn't come back. Because my oncotype dx test coming back so high there is a 24 percent chance that the cancer WILL return in another area that could be untreatable. By doing chemo it drops down to about 15 percent. We decided that UCSF would prescribe the treatments and that I would do them here in town because I will be sick the first couple of days after each dose. Dr. Moasser walked out of the room and I looked at Jeff and just wept! He wrapped his arms around me as he always does and held me until I was done. We got to the elevator and he began to tell me God is in control and we will get through this. This time its him telling me instead of me reassuring him I am going to live. Its amazing how you can reverse roles in trying times. I told him I know the Lord will be with me, I know the Lord will protect me, I know the Lord does all things for good, I know the Lord loves me and is not out to harm me. I know all of these things, but it still stinks to know that for the next 6 months my immune system will be down and if my children are sick I can't console them or if they want to run around and be silly I might be nauseous! All of those things go through my mind. BUT...... I do know that the Lord will protect me and my family through this, He will choose to use this for His glory, He will be with me always and forever. He knows what I am going through.

We were able to sit our kiddos down tonight when we got home and tell them what mommy had to do! You would be amazed at the relief they had when they heard I didn't have to lose my hair. Its amazing how we equate a bald chemo head to death! Even though that isn't true, in a 6 and 8 year old brain that's what they think. They took it very well and prayed that mommy will do well during treatment!

What I thought was going to be a very light hearted day turned into a very exhausting day. I just keep reminding myself of Job and how satan continued to tell the Lord (in my short words) "He won't be able to handle this one he will deny you" and Job continued to fight for the Lord. That is who I want to be! No matter what the circumstance I WILL continue to fight for the Lord to show His word is truth and He will continue to be faithful! I have learned a lot in the last 5 1/2 weeks about myself and about the Lord. I have learned that my plan is not always the best but the Lord continues to teach me that His plan IS always the best and He works all things for good and for the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. I have learned that by grace I am saved and by grace I walk each and every day one step at a time. I have learned to be obedient to His calling. I have learned to be completely honest with myself, my husband and most of all my children. This has allowed them to see the Glory of God and how He works and answers prayers even if it is not what we expected.
I thought I was going to go to this appointment and talk Dr. Moasser out of hormone therapy and not even have to think about chemotherapy. I had it all figured out in my mind. But the Lord had a different path for me to take. I don't know why and I may never know but I know that I will stay obedient to Him and His plan for me and I will fight for Him so that His glory will be revealed to many through this. I will keep you posted as I get the other test results back and get the start date for the chemo.
I love you all and thank you so much for all of your support whether I have known you my whole life or if I have just met you by you reading this blog.
Blessings to you

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