Wednesday, April 15, 2015

After the Wave

When the giant wave pulled back into the sea, and the knowledge of Jeff's condition settled into our mind and hearts, we were grateful for the enormous amount of prayers being offered up on our behalf.  We have swam through debris and dark waters these past few weeks.  Questions, decisions, next steps, sickness, and treatment options swirled around us as we tried to figure how to communicate to the boys and each other.  How to begin to move forward.  In the beginning it was hard not to despair.  A second opinion in London gave the same options, the same time lines.  Reality sunk deep into our bones and each morning we had to realize again that this is the path we will now walk.
Jeff would ask if I was afraid, and I wasn't, friends asked if I was angry, and I felt no anger.  We read countless articles, books, and emails filled with options and opinions.  Many of them helped.  We are both art majors but I am pretty sure we could minor in Cancer treatments and nutrition.  We choose to go with the targeted Chemo treatment, Herceptin, Xeloda, and Cisplatin.  That along with diet, vitamins, and essential oils.  We also decided to start treatment in London for now.  They were able to start immediately and use better diagnostics and genetic testing for future treatment options.     
Jeff made the appointment for the first round of testing and Chemo resulting in a five day visit to London just as friends were arriving from America.  Luke and Levi became sick and fevers came back every night as I kept them upstairs and hydrated.  Ian then came down with high fevers and my heart broke.  Sickness surrounded us.  I jumped from boy to boy to boy and Jeff called a dear friend Will to see if he could meet him in London instead.  The day before Jeff left I felt fear and anger begin to swell for the first time.  I sent out messages to friends asking for an SOS prayers.  I didn't sleep and Ian didn't get better.  I called a friend the day Jeff left to and blurted out my brokenness, my fears.  I asked why God would send His children out to battle naked and bruised.  I couldn't see the good God I knew.  
And this is why I know we are not meant to walk this alone.   With gentle, bold words of truth she said it is not God who seeks to steal, destroy, or kill.  That our God is called Healer, Life giver, Comforter, Prince of Peace,  Provider, and Creator.  I hung up and helped Jeff pack for the train.  Our neighbors came to watch the boys as I drove him to the station and said goodbye.  Each day Jeff was gone Ian became more sick as the older boys slowly recovered.  Our friends visiting took Luke and Levi on adventures while I watched Ian and prayed for a heart that trusts.  Ian's fever broke for the final time the night before Jeff got home.  I scrubbed all surfaces and washed all sheets.  My heart softened and the fear subsided.  
A couple from church are letting us stay in their cabin on the Isle of Arran this week.  The boys are on their second week off of school for spring break.  We are soaking up the beautiful views and surroundings.  We go on walks when Jeff is feeling up for it and we watch movies and build with legos when he is not.  We are learning to take each moment as it comes and to trust the One who gives them.  We are not grieving the future or the unknown.  We may grieve small moments in the day, but we will not grieve what has yet to happen.  We will live fully each day given, even if that day is filled with "Natigue", our new word for when Jeff feels both nauseous and fatigued.  I honestly can't imagine what this season would be like without all the prayers and words of truth and encouragement.  We are not meant to walk alone and we are so grateful for the many many people that are walking with us.  Love, Becca