Hi! I met with Dr. Richards today in Chicago. He said my latest CT scans reveal that the tumors in my liver, kidneys, pancreas, and abdominal cavity have grown, both in mass and in number. The cancer also appears to be in my lungs now, too. As a result, we are going to discontinue the clinical trial because it appears that it is not working. He presented a few other treatment options but recommended that we take six weeks off before choosing one.
Yes, that news sucks. But let's put things in perspective. First, I have other options. No one has told me to "get your affairs in order" and I don't expect to hear that directive anytime soon. Second, I still feel pretty good and can eat what I want. I could have a relentless bout of nausea and severe fatigue. Third, I have a loving wife and kids, a supportive network of relatives and friends, and I'm happy with my life. Not all people in my situation can say that. Fourth, it could be worse. I just received word this morning that my cousin, who is nine years younger than me and who has been battling cancer for three years longer than me, was Lifeflighted (is that a word?) to the KU Medical Center to have emergency surgery. His doctors discovered a softball-sized tumor in his pelvis, which was causing his kidneys to shut down. Now that would really suck. So although it makes no sense at all, I remain optimistic about future treatments and continue to pray that things will get better.
I pray also, undoubtedly with a greater sense of purpose than I would have had a couple of years ago, for everyone who needs healing. This blog almost seems silly and vain when I think of the ailments afflicting other people I know, who suffer but do not have a way of communicating their own need for understanding, for sympathy, for support, and for prayers. Please pray for them, too. You may not know their names. You may not know their distresses. But they probably need God's help as much or more than I do.
In other news, we celebrated Finn's birthday last night (May 15th). He is now one year old! I'm posting a couple of pictures. The first is of Finn trying to figure out what to do with these strange wrapped objects we put in front of him (he eventually figured it out, of course!). The second is of Finn enjoying a bite of brownie and ice cream. I know it looks like I'm yelling at him, but I'm actually demonstrating how to open wide. Really. : )