cautiously optimistic May 26, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — cindytripp @ 12:27 pm

That’s what I am right now…cautiously optimistic or maybe optimistically cautious.

Friday’s oncologist visit and chemotherapy treatment went well. It’s always a treat when there are no surprises. Blood work continues to show cancer marker numbers  within normal range, which I guess is good since I haven’t been diagnosed with breast or colon or ovarian cancer. The platelet count was the lowest it has ever been, but I still was able to have treatment. I’ve had Avastin infused through my port every three weeks for almost a year, which was the original treatment plan, and also I have taken an anti-estrogen pill since the original diagnosis in February 2012.

The optimism comes from the news that the Avastin treatment may be stopped by mid-summer. I was told that, of the two, the pill is probably the one that has the greater long-term effect on controlling the cancer. The caution comes from a bit of uncertainty about what will happen if I do come off the infusion, but obviously there is no way to know for certain until I stop.

Cautiously optimistic or optimistically cautious—either way, I’m hopeful and grateful. I feel inside like myself for the first time in a long time, and I wake every morning thankful to greet another day and see what God has for me next.


73 days May 13, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — cindytripp @ 10:27 pm

I knew that it had been awhile since I posted anything new, but it wasn’t until I logged on earlier that I figured out it had been 73 days— March 2 to May 13. I was aware of the passage of time, but for awhile I delayed writing because there was no change in how I felt.  Just like most people, I struggle with waiting on God in both important and unimportant matters; you’d expect that I would understand how to practice patience, to wait, and to trust because being a parent requires those character traits, but I don’t. I forget when it matters, I guess.

I read once that writing in a blog is exactly like writing in a private journal; you have to do it regularly or else the days blur together and you start waiting for something “important” to happen before you write, which means you stop writing.

Here’s the quick update: It took me almost two months to notice that I felt better. The oncologist had changed my anti-estrogen prescription, and after about 8 weeks I realized that I didn’t have as much joint pain. Then after another few days, I recognized that, in fact, I felt seriously better. At my last chemo visit onn May 3 (next one is May 24), I told my doctor  that I was somewhat reluctant to admit that I was starting to feel like myself again; he said that he understood and was glad to hear it.

I feel better. I really do.

I know that prayer has made the difference, as it has throughout this experience. I cease to be surprised by what God is going to do next, but I remain humbled and emotional by the evidence that He is doing something. While I do not deliberately seek the outcome that I want, I am so very grateful that He is restoring my life.

I remember how I felt this time last year, and then I know how I feel now. Although I continue to have chemo every three weeks, continue on the anti-estrogen regimen, and continue to have regular scans that show cancer cells still present (but not growing) and blood clot still there (but not moving), I feel better.

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. … I called on your name, Lord, from the depths of the pit. You heard my plea: “Do not close your ears to my cry for relief.” You came near when I called you, and you said, “Do not fear.” (Lamentations 3:22-26, 55-57)

Thank you for praying for me and my family. I won’t be a stranger, and I won’t wait another 73 days before writing again.