Linda and I were snuggled away into chemo room # 19 and all 50 square feet of space it luxuriously contained, patiently enduring well over 4 hours of a chemo treatment involving about 4 liters of fluid including a bag of cytoxin (Linda’s chemo drug). One of the precious nurses entered our room to hook up the bag of cytoxin and proceeded to put on a hazmat suit in front of us. Of course this was a little disconcerting for the both of us. First, this chemical is so toxic that the nurse needs protection to even hook it up to the IV, and yet it’s the treatment they have chosen to put in Linda. Second, I’m sitting there (snuggled right next to Linda) wondering, “If you need a radiation suit, why have you been letting me just sit right here in my sweat pants and t-shirt!?” Apparently this stuff is so strong, Linda is supposed to have her own bathroom for a couple days following treatment.
This may not come as a surprise to you, but, as a result, Linda hasn’t been feeling real well the last few days. You may have imagined that all on your own. But, let me assure you she still continues to spoil her family and primarily think of others. Molly even mentioned yesterday afternoon, “If mom’s sick, why is she doing the dishes?” Well that turned into a whole conversation and even a bit of debate. The boys had offered to do the dishes (of course prodded by me) and Linda had gently thanked them all and whisked them away to their activities. I offered to do them and was dismissed with a similarly gentle release . . . and then Molly enters the picture. Molly has her father’s flair for unvarnished truth which is often accompanied by equally dramatic facial expressions. Therefore, you are unable to fully appreciate the drama in this moment (and of course I’m making it more dramatic as I attempt to write it). Her words and her speech communicated to the men in the house that we were a bunch of buffoons for allowing our dear sweet wife and mother to serve us by slaving away at the sink doing the dishes. Of course I don’t recall her offering to do them either. 🙂 This manipulative moment was entirely lost on the boys and was dismissed by me with, “I believe mom when she tells me she wants to do something, and after being with her for 16 years I’ve learned to trust what she says.” Of course this wasn’t sufficient for Molly and she not only had to argue with my nonsense but as well had to debate that it hadn’t only been 16 years we’d been together . . . seriously! That’s what your caught on right now! 🙂
Later that evening as we further discussed our Sunday evening Bible study on sacrificial love, we tied it to my message earlier that morning about heavenly rewards. We are all quite certain that Linda will be overseeing a number of cities in heaven . . . and in one of those you will most likely find 4 guys doing her dishes.
And on a more serious note (the above was intended to be serious and kind of got away from me 🙂 So then, here’s the formal update.
Friday, Linda and I were at the UW Hospital with her first major chemo treatment. This drug, coupled with a couple others, is going to assist in her stem cells overpopulating and hopefully coming out in her blood stream in about 8 days. At that time she will go in for at least one day, maybe two, so that they can harvest her own stem cells. About two weeks later she will go into the hospital for another chemo treatment which will be followed by replacing her stem cells a couple of days later. It is at that time that she will be staying in the hospital for three weeks or so.
Linda feels pretty good right now. While she has had some nausea over the last couple of days, it’s not been very bad. Fatigue has been more dominant than any other side effect. While she could potentially go out and about, we have decided to limit her public interaction so that she can avoid all the sickness that others have been experiencing. I would imagine that for the next couple of months, there may only be a few public adventures.
Please be praying for her that this treatment will be successful and that the cancer will be effectively diminished as much as possible.