Monday, November 21, 2011

As the saying goes, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

First off I want to start by saying thank you to everyone that helped out with the BBQ benefit. I appreciate everyone who sold tickets, came out and bought plates, helped make food, brought food, helped set up, and helped all day. Most of all THANK YOU to Point of Grace Church for donating the brisket, showing up with smiles on their faces and working all day for us, and for cooking the food. We are so very thankful. I could not have done it without the help of so many great people and some that Nathan and I do not even know! What an amazing thing to realize there are still caring people in this world!

It has been awhile since I have updated. We are going on almost four weeks out from Nathan's transplant. The transplant went really well. It took most of the afternoon but Nathan held up really well through everything. Before the transplant he was a B negative now he is O positive. I am so grateful to the amazing young man that did this for my husband and the fact that hopefully Nathan will now have his non cancerous cells and he can live a normal life for once without the fear that at any minute his cancer will be back and he may not have anymore options. The days after the transplant were a roller coaster. Some days he was doing decent and then some days he was not good at all. He was pretty down in the dumps, to be expected he has been through alot and it's hard on him to be in the hospital especially for so long. He didn't eat really anything for about a month. A little soup, but pretty much just drank fluids and was feed through the port. He had a great deal of nausea and vomiting. Before transplant his counts were knocked completely down by the chemotherapy. Then they do the transplant, after that they give him more treatment to knock the counts back down and then they have to rise again on their own. This is when the transplant starts to take. He had some severe bone pain for about two days but the doctors said that happens to some people when his counts start to rise. He had a slight rash due to his platelets being so low, and a little jaundice due to an indirect liver function being off, but since it is indirect that was not serious and after about a week his color started to get back to normal. His counts rose pretty quick and the doctors say he is doing really good. So far no signs of GVHD (Graph vs Host Disease), although his doctor says that could change at anytime even years down the road. We have to keep an eye on any sings of at all times. He was released from the hospital early and went to mainstay close to hospital since he has to be within so many miles and has to go in for treatments and labs. He was supposed to be going everyday but is now going twice a week. He gets labs, test, fluids, port dressing changed, as well as meet with doctor, pharmacy person, and whatever else comes up. On the other five days he gives himself everything through his port. This concerned me at first that he wasn't going in but for Nathan it is better because of his anxiety and sickness the hospital seems to cause him. He is doing really well taking care of it all himself. He is taking quite a few medications in the mornings and in the evenings. The other day he had really severe stomach cramps that kept him up all night but that was due to one of the pill he is taking. Today he moved to an apartment close to the hospital. His lab work today showed that his counts have dropped again as well as his platelets and his kidney function was off but the doctor said it could be because of his meds and he is not getting enough fluids and is dehydrated. All in all he is doing well. His energy is up. He is eating alot more everyday. He lost over 20 pounds and lost his hair about two weeks ago, but he is still as handsome as ever! Despite that his color looks good he isn't nearly as thin or frail as the first time he went through all this. Just taking it day by day, that is all we can do. Continue to pray for him please, he has been through so much! I read this the other day and thought it was so true and beautiful.......
The hard lessons learned through the tough times ready us to deal with better days by building into our lives needed virtues such as grace, dependence, and perspective. Bad times produce good things in us that mold us into the type of people God can trust to handle more good things.
Nathan is just that, a person of grace, and amazing perspective. He always calms my soul and makes me want to be a better person. I do feel that God in some way is molding Nathan into the person he is and that good good things are ahead for him and for us as a family. Everyday is always a blessing!

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