Today I had an appointment with my oncologist. I was looking forward to hearing about the results from my recent scan. The idea was that we would learn how this scan compared with the one taken when I was first diagnosed.
My appointment was in the afternoon and all morning long I filled the day with busyness to keep my mind off the upcoming appointment. I wanted to be positive and hopeful. I wanted to hope for the best but at the same time I wanted to be prepared if the news was less than positive. The appointment finally arrived. I was prepared for every possible report, or so I thought. As the Dr. started talking about the scan he said, “the technicians did not know they were supposed to compare it with a previous scan so we do not have the comparison results.” My heart sank…I was so looking forward to hearing the results. My oncologist went on to assure me that the comparison would be good…but it was not the same as hearing they had actually viewed the two scans side by side. I thought I had prepared myself for every possible report, apparently there was one I had not thought of.
The rest of this appointment was okay. We talked about future treatments. The plan is to have twelve rounds of chemotherapy and then to take a look at where things are. Twelve rounds would get me close to November. We may stop for a while or we may do what he called “maintenance chemo” which is a much more reduced dose. There will be a lot of blood work and monitoring of numbers to ensure that my Cancer is not progressing or growing. It is a good thing I really like my oncologist, we will be in relationship for the rest of my life. He is an amazing man. There is a sense of calm and humility about him that allows you to have very difficult conversations with a sense of peace. As he talks it is clear that he knows “his stuff” and is up to date on the most recent learning when it comes to my Cancer. There is also this sense that his priority is my well-being. He would have no problem asking for help or a consult should something arise that he was not clear on. It was not the easiest of appointments but Dr. Saroha certainly made it much easier.
I have been spending time thinking about where and how I want to invest the limited amount of energy I have. This past round of chemo has been the easiest in some ways, no nasty side effects. Yet at the same time it seems like my energy levels have been lower. It feels like multiple rounds of chemo are taking their toll and my body is telling me I need to pay attention to rest and self-care. So far I have been able to work full weeks and have been in the office most days. I have enjoyed my study at home and am glad to have the space to study and work on what is important to me.
Nancy and I have spent more time these past few weeks sitting on the porch during the evening than we have in recent months. I want to do more of that. I want to work on my book. It has “haunted” me for years and I need to make the time to complete it. As I think about First Baptist Church I want to invest time into our new Elder/Deacon board. They are a great group of people and they will be the future of FBC and it will be fun to watch them grow and then give back to the Kingdom of God. I want to spend time investing in developing a worship culture at FBC that helps people encounter the living God. Over the past few years I have really grown comfortable with the “Companions in Christ” spiritual growth program. I want to facilitate several small groups this next year. These past few months have not been easy for me…they have been harder for Nancy, my caregiver. This fall I want to help develop a care givers support group. A place for caregivers who are walking with those they love to come and talk, share life, and get a little encouragement and support. I am getting clear on what is important and what is not. I like this feeling. It is freeing and has potential for a great season of life.
God is Good All the Time…All the Time God is Good