After two years of silence on this page, I’m back! I’ve got another update on my health for those of you who are keeping track. A lot has happened over the past two years that I haven’t written about, but the recent developments are significant enough for me to share more about. I can’t help but be a bit too wordy but I’ll do my best to be concise.
I learned recently that my most recent MRI shows that my tumor is growing again. A quick review…back in 2019 after almost two years of not growing, the tumor started growing again. We tried a round of chemo in early 2019 but stopped after one cycle and opted to do a not-too-invasive biopsy surgery to get a clearer picture of the tumor. Through that we learned the tumor had progressed to Grade 3 (fast growing) from Grade 2 (slow growing). I spent part of 2019 and most of 2020 on chemotherapy. I also got IV infusions of Avastin every three weeks to try to treat the tumor. I’m still on Avastin and have been getting MRIs every 2-3 months to monitor the tumor.
My April MRI compared to my January MRI clearly shows the tumor growing. A group of doctors reviewed it and agreed the aggressive growth warranted quick and aggressive treatment. They estimated that if I were to stop all treatment immediately, I’d likely have 4-6 months to live. I’ll be starting radiation treatment sometime next week, and that will be followed either by chemotherapy or immunotherapy depending on how things go. Our goal is to stop the tumor’s growth again.
Obviously this is pretty hard to hear. Personally I feel much more like I’m on a countdown timer than I did before. There’s a lot of processing yet to be done. I still firmly believe God is ultimately in control, and that He is working everything together for my good. His timeline isn’t the timeline I would want, but I am trying and learning to trust Him. Some days it’s easier than others, but I know God is meeting Janelle and I, and walking with us through this. We are still getting a deeper understanding of what it means for Him to be good and to be present with us.
I have said from the start that my greatest need isn’t healing, it’s Jesus. I have gotten more of Him, and am getting more still now. It hurts, and it’s in my pain that I’m finding more of Him. I hope, over the next several months, to write more about that. For today I’ll just say I am finding encouragement, strength, and comfort in 1 Peter 4:19, which says:
“Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.” – 1 Peter 4:19 (ESV)
For those of you that pray, please continue to pray for my family. So many of you have been much more faithful in prayer for me than I have. It’s incredible, and yet another way God shows me how I am loved, and not alone. This is very hard on Janelle and my children. They’ve had to deal with so much, and this is yet another hit for them. Please pray for their precious hearts to find comfort in Jesus and to somehow know it’s from Him. Janelle carries such a burden. Please pray for her to know Jesus is with her, too, and that our future is in His capable hands. For me, I want to be healed, but more than that I want to be faithful to His call and purpose for my life. He’s giving me more assurance that He is with me and loves me in ways I never imagined could be true. I’m so grateful for that. I also want to see how I can be faithful, trust myself and my family to Him, and do good, right now.