Friday, August 20, 2010


Ah, we're home. Things went okay at M.D. Anderson. Many of the areas that they saw cancer in have shrunk, but two areas have gotten bigger. Because of this, Dr. V is changing my chemo. I now have to go every 2 weeks instead of every 3, but the new regimen will supposedly be easier on my body. I didn't even bother reading the side effects. I'd rather not know.

I will just keep on believing that my next scan will be cancer free. I was disappointed that this wasn't the one, but it's coming. I know it is.

In the meantime, please pray for me as I press on. Right now I feel just fine physically, but there is a weariness in me that is difficult to explain. Please pray for strength.

Oh, for the fun of it I'm going to tell you about our day yesterday. It was a little insane. Well, to add to the insanity you need to hear about Wednesday first. We left home at 4 a.m. for our 6 a.m. flight, parked in the remote lot at the airport in Milwaukee, caught our flight to Houston and arrived with enough time to eat lunch before I had to check in for my blood work and CT scan. After all the lovely CT scan prep (eww, eww, gag, gag), I finally got my scan at 7:30 p.m., and we got back to the hotel around 8:30...exhausted of course.

So yesterday I had my appointment with Dr. V at 8:30 a.m. and then we went back to our hotel to get the rental car and head to the airport. We got there at about 11 a.m. so we tried to change our flight from a 3:30 p.m. to a 12:10 p.m. 12:10 was full, so we asked to be put on standby. Turns out that plane had a stop in Orlando, and so even if we got on the 12:10 in Houston, there was no guarantee of a seat on the Orlando to Milwaukee leg, and if we didn't get on that one we'd be stuck in Orlando overnight. So scratch that, we stayed on the 3:30. I had such a desire to get home and see Eva that I was pretty upset we couldn't get on the earlier flight, but such is life. We hung out at the airport 'til about 2:30 when I got an automated courtesy call from Southwest saying that our 3:30 flight was now scheduled to depart at 5:45. Oh, and did I mention that there's no such thing as a direct Southwest flight from Houston to Milwaukee? No, this 3:30-turned-5:45 flight had a scheduled stop in Dallas and Kansas City before landing in Milwaukee so we'd be getting in VERY late. Anyway, this delay just about put me over the edge emotionally. I was not happy. I woke Matt up from his nap and asked if he wanted to try to get on a flight to Chicago instead. So we went to the counter and asked to switch to the Chicago flight departing at 3:15. God bless that ticket counter lady. She switched our flight, took one look at me and said, "Do you want to pre-board?" and gave us a "pre-board for disability" pass. Um, I didn't think I looked THAT bad, but I guess the free flight passes from Angel Flights plus the head scarf plus the fact that I'm pretty sure I laid my head on the counter in a "I am so done" way while she changed our flight added up to her making the conclusion that we needed to pre-board. I don't usually like to do anything that allows me to identify as "sick" if I can in any way avoid it, but whatever. We pre-boarded. Matt made a call to Amtrak to book tickets from Chicago to Milwaukee on the 8:05 p.m. train and we flew to Chicago arriving around 5:30 p.m. We hopped on the Orange Line train (good thing we know our way around Chicago), ironically passing by our city apartment (which we still have for another 9 days or something) and hopped off at Quincy to go to Union Station. We got to Union around 6:30, had a couple of cheap beers while we waited, and then got on the Amtrak at 8:05. We arrived at the Milwaukee Airport Amtrak stop at about 9:30 and got on a shuttle to take us to our car. (the Amtrak lot is not the same as the remote lot we'd parked in the morning before. Wow, was that just a day ago??) We asked the driver if he could take us to the "A Lot" and he said, "Yeah, I'll take you there" in a voice that clearly stated he would take us, but he wasn't happy about it. As he pulled into the lot, he asked where we were parked. Matt told him, "I don't really know. Just drop us off at the main shuttle stop and we'll find it." And, the dude says in his obviously annoyed tone, "Why didn't you just park in the Amtrak lot?" AHHHHHH, I didn't know whether to laugh or cry, but I will tell you this much. Dude was just lucky that: 1.) We are both pretty non-confrontational and 2.) We were both too tired to say much of anything anyway.


But anyway, new subject. Here's where I'm at tonight (besides exhausted as we just got home from a day at the zoo). God is good. He is healing my body, even if the physical evidence isn't there yet. I don't understand why I'm not better yet (or wasn't at the time of the scan) but I believe that I have a destiny that includes me surviving for many many more years, and so I WILL be healed.

Thank you all for your prayers. I ask that you continue to pray for my strength as I battle both physically and more importantly spiritually. John 10:10 says "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." So I claim that "life to the full" is for me, and know that cancer is NOT life to the full. I will be well and I will have life to the full once again. Please pray that I have the strength to hang on to such promises.

Thank you all!!


  1. I'm so glad you are home safe and our prayers continue! Leasa

  2. Thank you for sharing everything! OMG!!! You probably need a couple days rest kiddo! What a chaotic trip...for the lady that likes order. :)
    I love you!!! I know that your body is healing and that God has it all under control...working behind the scenes to present the beautiful masterpiece that is your life! I miss you soooo much but will probably have to wait until around the second week of September to see you as Chandler and Sara have injuries and illnesses of their own that may need surgery. And...Sara moves into Marquette on Thursday! Wahhh!!! Love you soooooo much and can't wait to see you!!

  3. Wow, life is an adventure. Thank God for transportation and smart phones to make reservations, etc. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Rachel thank you so much for keeping us posted. Now try to rest and renew your strength. You have been through alot. Rest peacefully as you know that so many are praying for you. You are in my daily thoughts & prayers. In Christ's love, Debra
    Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

  5. Rachel, you seem to have figured out the balance of living life to the fullest when you're feeling well and resting when you know your body is calling for it. This is something that many people who are NOT fighting for their lives have not been able to figure out! You are truly an inspiration and a blessing to all are fortunate to have you in their lives! Prayers will keep flowing for you and your wonderful family!