The Colonel and Bettie
Dr. and Mrs. Tom Fabian
800 Creekleaf Court Columbia, SC 29212
My dear friends and family,
Our journey with this surprise medical diagnosis is continuing to move forward. The Colonel is tackling the biggest storm of his life head on and in typical “colonel” style! We are armed with print outs, numbers, levels, medical terms, a detailed calendar,etc. Everything is as systematic as possible and we have a “plan”.
Our appointment yesterday was on the calendar and went just as we had hoped! For the first time in a “Fabian’s” life, there was excitement in the room when Dad stepped on the scale to find that he was 2 pounds heavier than seven days ago! He eats what he wants, when he wants (drs. orders) and that seems to be paying off. Mom and I are learning how to shop for the full fat and full sugar items (and not eat them :o) The labwork showed that Dad’s levels had dropped even more from last week. This is a good thing and shows that he was able to endure the reduced level of chemotherapy. The dr. quickly ordered up another round and he was hooked up and ready to go! He has not had any nausea or major side effects last week or this week (so far) from the chemotherapy. In fact, he already has a chair reserved for Monday to receive another chemo treatment on Monday. If we can go through with this, it will be the first time his body will have been able to stand 3 treatments in a row. Mom is a champ with the at home infusions (daily hydration) We are thinking she might apply for a supervisor’s home health position before long 🙂
As I sat in the clinic yesterday I was amazed at the huge variety of people sitting in the sea of chemo chairs. There are young adults, middle age folks, and senior citizens. There are people with hair and without. Cancer knows no boundaries of race, gender, age, or social status. I worry about the ones that sit with no one to talk to during the hours they are there. I hurt for the people that have a taxi driver drop them off at the front door. I want to go talk to the inmates that are in shackles and handcuffs with two armed guards staring at them while they receive treatment. Not a private moment for them. Even the armed guard goes in the bathroom with them. I want to know the inmates story. I am touched to see a granddaughter read a school book to her grandmother while her chemo drips, stopping to ask her how to “sound out” a word. I feel the frustration of the man who is alone and has a tracheotomy and can’t tell the nurse what he wants or needs. He is confused and won’t stay seated. People in pajamas and people in dress clothes. Some there for one hour and some for eight. Some come once a week and others come every day. Patients and families are entertained with crossword puzzles, laptops, personal dvd players, iphones, magazines, newspapers,novels, and watching the fish swim in the tanks or birds flying to the feeders on the other side of that glass. Many people sleep. I chuckle when one of Dad’s nurses comes in her “Gamecock” scrubs wanting to talk about the wonderful baseball game the night before. He just grinned. This is a world I never gave any serious thought to. But, this is our world now.
Maybe it is beginning to sink in a little. I do still find myself not believing this to be reality. But, it is painful. Lately I have been struggling with “change”. I wouldn’t say it has ever been my favorite thing. (so now you know that I don’t like roller coasters or change) Yeah, yeah, I know it is said that “change is good”. I don’t think that is always true. I don’t find much about cancer to be good. Don’t get me wrong…there are blessings and God is answering our prayers and taking care of us. But, this is tough stuff.
I was walking the neighborhood (learning those streets very well) and tears are rolling down my face. I say to God ” But, we should be on vacation instead of a weekly trip to a cancer clinic” “But, Dad should be able to walk these streets with me instead of being worn out from coming downstairs” “But, Dad should be able to take Mom out on their standing Friday night date instead of ordering in” “But, Dad worked so hard to enjoy retirement and he is now spending these days being sick” My mind had strayed from the music coming through my earphones. I walked harder, the tears flowed, and as I was telling myself I had to get it together…here comes God’s hug. He tapped my shoulder and told me to “listen”…
Oh, the joy that God never changes and He is always the same! He will remain after the day is gone and the things of earth have passed. He is the rock that never fails. He is everlasting!
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
And that, my precious friends and loved ones, is why we get a good night’s rest and can face the morning to do it again….
(and just so you know, YOU, make this better! Oh how God is using YOU to bless us. Much love and abundant thanks.)