My Kryptonite

Hi my name is Brandy and my fiance is Donald Fitzgerald. As most of you know Donald has been dubbed "Superman" and for good reason. Donald was diagnosed with ALL (leukemia) when he was 13 years old and relapsed when he was 18. He was cured of this cancer and has gone almost 13 years cancer free. During this time, he has undergone 2 hip replacements and a partial shoulder replacement due to the high doses of steroids he had to take. Then, on March 24th 2011, 3 months after his 32nd birthday, we got the devastating news that the cancer had come back. We are now at UMC about to undergo the long process of Chemo once again. He will have to stay in the hospital for a minimum of 30 days for the initial treatment. He is strong and will beat this once again but we need everyone's prayers. God is in control and there is nothing out of his hands. As someone posted once on facebook "The deals not done until God's done dealing".

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Give it all to God!

Cast all you anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

A friend has something on her mind, so you sit with her in a quiet place and ask her about it. Tearfully, she explains her dilemma. But before you can say anything or offer your help, she leaves, taking her anguish along with her.
            We do the same thing when we bring our burdens to God, then pick them right up again. We do it when we deliver our sins to the foot of His cross, then continue to bear the weight of our guilt, and when we ask for God’s help, but insist on solving our problems in our own way.
            In the life and ministry of Jesus, God’s Son, we see God’s mercy, compassion, and power at work in the lives of people – people with devastating sicknesses and people with little to hope for. He healed them! He delivered them! He died on the cross and rose again to show us His victory over our most deadly problem, sin. He took the guilt of our sin on His shoulders! It’s gone!
            Gather up everything that weighs on your heart, and carry the load to your heavenly Father and place it at His feet. Humbly accept His words of forgiveness, then walk away, arms free and heart at peace. This is His love at work in you.

Helen Steiner Rice – A Celebration of God’s Love

Monday, August 1, 2011

There's Gonna Be Brighter Days

Donald has been laid to rest. He is in Heaven enjoying beautiful music, running for the first time since he was a child, playing his guitar and laughing at all of us trying to make it without him. We, (Pat, Dana, Yvette, Noelle and I) were all sitting at the kitchen table a short while ago when the girls came running in screaming "Christopher is on top of a snake". "What do you mean he is on top of a snake?" I asked. We all go running outside to find Christopher has pinned a huge snack under the tire of his power wheels 4-wheeler. How he managed to pin it perfectly is beyond me but I am sure Donald had something to do with it. He would have been so proud. So, we are all standing around watching the snake and trying to figure out what to do. Patricia calls the neighbor and he wasn't home but was on his way. Patricia comes out of the house with a gun and I had gone to the shop and retrieved a shovel. Upon returning to the scene I found the snake was lose. He headed for the house and I stabbed at him with the shovel, at which point he turns back at me and I jump back. He heads back towards the house and I stab him, pinning him just before he is fully out of sight under the back porch. I am shaking like a leaf at this point and hear this loud bang from behind me. Patricia was checking to see if the gun would shoot. (as if I wasn't scared enough) LOL!!! Patricia couldn't get a good shot because there were rocks everywhere and she was afraid she might miss. Dana and I looked at each other and said " If Donald were here this wouldn't be a problem because when he saw it he would have either shot it because it was poisonous or picked it up because it wasn't." So, I am now standing with the shovel stabbing into the middle of the snake and still shaking. Our neighbor brings over another shovel and a limb cutting device. Dana takes the limb cutter and pins the snake and cuts it's head off. Upon further examination of the snake after it's death, it was determined that it was a cotton mouth. Looking back on the situation as a whole it was very comical. I am sure Donald got a good laugh out of it. I believe this was his way of telling us we will all make it without him. We all just need to stick together and lean on each other for support. It could have been a bad outcome but instead it was a life lesson learned for all of us. It's the little things that keep us going day to day. Thank you Lord for all you have done for us and for giving us all strength and courage to face each new day without our sweet Donald. We are so blessed to have each other to get through the days to come. I don't know what people do in times like these without having a personal relationship with the Lord. I know I would not be in a good place. I am so Thankful to be a part of the family of God because I know there are going to be brighter days. There will come a day with no more pain, tears or fears. I can't wait for that joyous reunion when we are all finally taken home. Praise God! Praise God! Praise God!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Memorials

Memorials can be made to:

Children's Cancer Clinic
2500 N. State Street
Jackson MS 39216
or
FBC Byram Building Fund
7541 Siwell Road
Byram MS 39272

Funeral Arrangements

Visitation will be Friday from 5-8 and again Saturday at 2. The funeral will be Saturday at 3. Visitation, funeral, and burial will be held at First Baptist Church of Byram.

Thank you all for your prayers and loving support. He was truly loved and will be missed dearly by all who knew him. He felt the love from everyone during his fight with leukemia. Even superman has his Kryptonite. Leukemia was Donald's. I know he is in Heaven now watching over us. I can't wait until the day I can see him again. I am so glad his suffering is finally over. He will never hurt again. Thanking the Lord for his many blessings. Even if we don't understand we know God has a plan and a reason for everything. He knows what he is doing and there is a greater good in all of this. Donald has touched so many lives and brought many people closer go God. Like the song goes " When we all get to Heaven, What a day that will be".

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

In a Better Place

Donald lost his battle with cancer today. He was ready to go home and be with the Lord. He is free from pain and suffering. He fought a good fight and we will one day see him again in Heaven. He will watch over us and he will always be in our hearts. He had the brightest smile and was the most wonderful person I have ever met. I could never find another to love me as much as he did. He will be dearly missed. Thank you Lord for the time you gave us. We are not promised tomorrow and soon we all will be coming home to join him. I Love You Donald. You will be with me always!!!!!

I will post the funeral arrangements when we get everything together. Thank you all for your prayers.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Code

Donald coded around 5:45 this evening. He had no pulse for 15 minutes. They were able to bring him back and he is stable. The doctors say it doesn't look good and they have called the family in. We know there is a greater physician and He says when it's time, not the doctors. God is good and no matter what happens everything is going to be okay. God knows what's best. We are still thankful for all of His many blessings. He is in control. We will praise Him in this storm!

PRAY FOR DONALD

He is being taken to the ICU. His blood pressure is dropping, oxygen in dropping, it's hard for him to breath and he is septic (really bad infection in the blood).

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Pain in the Mouth!

We got off to a rough start today! Donald's mouth is getting worse and it is becoming harder to bare. It has brought tears to his eyes many times. The doctor ordered a different type of medication that is supposed to treat the sores in his mouth instead of just masking the pain for a short time. He has an arsenal of medications to put in his mouth and none of them seem to be working. Hopefully this one will give him some relief. I was able to get him to sit in the chair for about 15 minutes today and ate what he could of his breakfast while I changed his bed. His back hurts so very bad though. He has a hard time sitting up in the chair and especially trying to walk.

He had to get platelets again today. He tolerated them very well. His labs still look good with the exception of the platelets. He did spike a small fever this afternoon for a short time but it has gone back down and the doctor's don't seem too concerned. We spoke with the doctor today and she said that within the next week his white count should be high enough for him to go home for a little while. She wants to send him home for about a week and then do a biopsy in the clinic. He will then be able to return home while we wait for the results. Hopefully he will be well enough to go home sometime this week. He is soooo ready to get home for a little while. Praying for healing, wisdom and strength. Only God can heal Donald's body and give him and us the strength to carry on.

Friday, July 22, 2011

The Strength of Love

"Where is God?" It's a natural question when we're overwhelmed by tragedy. It can be a personal tragey, such as terminal illness or an untimely death; or it can be a national tragedy, such as our recent economic recession; or a global tragedy, such as wars between countries. Where is God in all this?

God would answer, "Right here with you, where I've always been." We fail to notice Him because we believe we're suffering something way too big for God to change, way too heavy for God to handle, so we don't involve Him. When He doesn't intervene in the way we think He should, we conclude God doesn't have the strength, power, or interest to do anything.

Our God, who was there when his beloved Son Jesus suffered and died on the cross for us, is the same God who can and will carry the burden of our sorrows. Jesus' victory over death proves that even our worst tragedy, death, is no match for God, who invites us to lay all our fears at the foot of His throne.

Where is God in your personal tragedies and in the world's terrors? Right there with you! Let the eyes of your spirit see Him as He opens His arms of comfort and reassurance to you in all life's circumstances.

By: HSR - A Celebration of God's Love

Balance

Donald is still hanging in there. His spirits are high and he is trying to think positive. He has his moments but for the most part he is doing good. The neuropothy in his legs has gotten worse and he has almost fallen several times trying to get from the bed to the restroom or sink. They have started him on a medication that should help with the pain and numbness. It will take about 2 weeks to fully take effect but we are hopeful that it will help. The doctor wants him to try and move around as much as he can without tiring himself too much. They want him to try and keep his strength up or the bone marrow transplant. Our current plan is for him go home for a days once his white count comes back up and them come back to the clinic for a bone marrow biopsy to see how well the chemo is working. At that point they will decide what they want to do next. If the chemo is working but he is not in remission they will hit him with another round of chemo. If he is in remission he will go straight to transplant, and if the chemo is not working they will have to try something else. We are optimistic and know God is in control. We are so thankful for everything the Lord has done for us. He continues to bless us each and every day.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Night Sweats

Donald had another restless night last night. Between the leukemia and all of the medications, especially the steroids, he is sweating a lot. He woke up several times last night drenched in sweat. He sweats during the day but it seems to be worse at night. He has also started to get neuropathy in his legs and feet. It is very painful and is making it very difficult to get out of bed and walk. This is all a side effect of the chemo and should go away but it has him worried. His mouth is pretty sore but nothing like the last time. He is still able to eat solid foods and his appetite has been good. His platelets are beginning rise on their which is a good sign that the chemo is working. The doctor is wanting to let Donald go home before doing anymore chemo. We are not sure when or for how long yet but I am sure Donald will enjoy being home for a few days. They started him on a medication yesterday that boosts your white count so hopefully it will not be long before he can go home. It will do wonders for his mental state.  

I came across a poem today that I thought I would share with you all. It came from Helen Steiner Rice - A Celebration of God's Love.

Look on the Sunny Side
There are always two sides - the good and the bad,
The dark and the light, the sad and the glad...
But in looking back over the good and the bad,
We're aware of the number of good things we've had,
And in counting our blessing, we find when we're through
We've no reason at all to complain or be blue...
So thank God forr the good things He has already done,
And be grateful for Him forr the battles you've won,
And know that the same God who helped you beforre
Is ready and willing to help you once more,
then with faith in you heart, reach out forr God's hand
And accept what He sends, though you can't understand...
For our Father in heave always knows what is best,
And if you trust His wisdom, your life will be blessed...
For always remember that whatever betide you,
You are never alone, forr God is beside you.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Moving Right Along

Donald had a good weekend. He is still getting platelets everyday but they are coming up a little on their own. They have been averaging about 14,000 for the past few mornings. They jumped to 74,000 after one of the donor platelets over the weekend. We need to get some more of those. :) The doctor is talking about doing a bone marrow biopsy before doing anymore chemo treatments. They are going to wait for his white count to come back up first. The doctor also said she would like to let him go home for a few days before starting another round of chemo. We will just have to wait and see how things go over the next few days. Everything seems to be going very good so far. His lab work looks great, considering. I was able to get him in the wheelchair last night and took him outside for a little while. I think it made him feel much better. He has not been outside in 2 months. I am going to try and get him out of the room at least every other day. It's not always easy to get him in the wheelchair though.

I was able to get the microwave and refrigerator in the room and checked out by maintenance. It will be so nice not to have to get ice for the cooler everyday. It holds a lot more too. This hospital room looks more and more like home everyday. I am sure we are the only people that have a microwave in the room. I just wish we had thought about it sooner. Now that we have all of this in the room they will probably let him go home. LOL!

We continue to be thankful for all of the many blessings God has bestowed upon us and pray for many more days of good news. Praying for healing and that the Lord will lead us down the right path with his treatments.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Protocol 3 Day 2

Donald was in a good bit of pain today! The chemo is starting to get to him. He had to have platelets and blood today. He is actually finishing up his last bag of blood as I type. His appetite is still pretty good though. I fixed him chicken salad sandwich when I got off work today and he almost inhaled it. It thought about eating another one but didn't want to push his luck. His shoulders have been hurting him a lot today, especially the one he had surgery on. It is probably a combination of chemo, leukemia, being in the bed most of the time and using his arms to get out of the bed. He was a little down today but seems to be coming around. He didn't sleep very good last night and wasn't able to nap much today either so hopefully he will sleep tonight. They should be finished with all of his meds, blood work, etc.. by 10:30 so he should be able to relax and get some rest. He is still doing exceptionally well considering the circumstances.

I spoke with the nurse today about bringing a microwave and small refrigerator to the room since we have to stay here for so long and she said she would check into it but thinks we can as long as maintenance checks them before we plug them in. That will help so much. This little cooler we have doesn't hold much and it is very tiresome trying to replace the ice everyday.

Praying for healing and strength! I read something today that made me smile. "God has not promised a smooth ride but He has promised a safe landing" :) We just have to keep our eyes on him. There are better days to come.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Protocol 3 Day 1

Donald did very good today! They started his chemo and he has had minimal side effects. A little nausea and a headache but that's not bad. This chemo runs for 24 hours and then they will give him a different chemo once a day for 2 days. After 3 days of chemo they will wait for his counts to drop and come back up and then do it all over again. His sugar is on the rise again due to the Prednisone but that is to be expected. He hasn't started freezing me out of the room just yet but I'm sure it won't be long now. :)  Donald spoke with the doctor today to try and cut down on the amount of finger sticks he is going to have to get. They will only be sticking him once a day along with the lab work they draw in the morning. That way they can see where his sugar is in the morning and at night. There's not much they can do about his sugar being high because it's a side effect of the drug but that do have to make sure it doesn't get too too high. He also got more family donated platelets today and brought his platelet level up from 9,000 to 21,000. Overall he is doing exceptionally well. God has been so very good to him and I know he is going to heal him. Thanking the Lord for another good day and praying for many more to come.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Platelet Rise

Donald had a good day today. He slept the majority of the day and seems to be doing very well tonight. They pre-medicated him today for his Chemo tomorrow. They also started him on Prednisone again today. He will be back to eating anything that doesn't eat him first and freezing me out of the room. LOL!!! I will have to pull out the Eskimo gear. HA! He got his first bag of family donated platelets today and it brought his counts up from 6,000 to 22,000 which is wonderful. Praise the Lord! Praying this is just the first of many more good things to come. Donald will get his first round of Chemo tomorrow. They will give him an immediate dose of chemo and then hang a bag of the same chemo that runs in over 24 hours. This is the bad stuff. It doesn't play. Donald is anxious but I know he will do well. He is so very strong. God is watching over him every step of the way and will take care of him. This protocol is going to work and we will be able to move forward with his transplant before we know it. Thanking the Lord for such a good day and we pray He will continue to heal Donald's body. I pray the Lord will keep him strong and continue to give me the strength and the words to encourage him. God is good ALL the time.

Monday, July 11, 2011

What a Day!

Today began like any other day. We knew what was on the agenda or so we thought we knew. We were told that Donald would get platelets this morning until his platelet count reached 50,000. Once he reached that mark they would send him down to have his central line put it. Boy were we wrong. I was just about to walk out the door to go to work when the nurse came in to unhook him and send him downstairs for the procedure. He had not yet received ANY platelets. His platelet count was only 9,000 when they drew labs this morning. So, we questioned the nurse and she said they wanted to go ahead and take him down for the procedure regardless of his platelet count. Well, we get downstairs and advise the nurse of his platelet count and boy does she look at us strange. She reads the doctors orders and calls to speak with someone with IR and, come to find out, the nurse was supposed to hang the platelets before sending him for the procedure. So, the nurse comes down about 30 minutes later with his platelets but she has nothing to hang them with, no saline, no tubing and no IV pump. The nurse was under the impression that they would have all of that in the IR dept. Guess what? They don't! Now Donald's nurse and the IR nurse are on a search for all of the materials they need to hang his platelets. They finally gather everything they need and find out the tubing they have will not work with the electronic pumps. So, they have to let his platelets run in by gravity and hope they are running in at the right speed. Meanwhile, Donald is getting more and more anxious with every passing minute. We finally get everything in order and speak with one of the techs about his procedure. We are all ready to go back but, wait, Donald can't go to the room yet. They have had an emergency come into the hospital and are presently occupying the room Donald is going into. The tech says it will be about 45 minutes but that works out great because he will have time to finish his platelets before the procedure. Okay! Over 2 hours later we are told the person in the room he is supposed to go in is having some complications so it will be a little longer. That does nothing for Donald's anxiety. They finally decide to take him into another room to perform the procedure where he waits for another hour and then they finally get his central line put in. He was in the procedure room for 1 1/2 hours for a 15 minute procedure. We were downstairs a total of 6 hours for a 15 minute procedure. Unbelievable! Needless to say it has been a very long and tiring day. Oh, did I mention Donald was not allowed to eat past midnight. He was quit hungry when we returned to the room at 4:30 this evening. He is now resting peacefully. His line looks good and is working perfectly. The procedure went fine and that is the most important thing. Regardless of the mishaps and the long wait today, the Lord blessed us with a great outcome. The time kind of flew by for the most part. I just hate that Donald had to sit up in a wheelchair the entire time. I'm sure it did him some good though. Maybe we can get him to get out of the bed a little more often. We know he can do it now! LOL!!! Thanking the Lord for allowing his procedure to go well and praying for continued healing of Donald's body.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Doing Good

The weekend has gone pretty good. Donald's IV has held up really well and is still working. He has had platelets every day but they are still staying around 8-10 thousand. He is supposed to be scheduled to go down to IR tomorrow to have another central line put in so they are going to have to pump him full of platelets in the morning. They have to get his platelets above 50 thousand to do the procedure. If all goes as planned they will prep him for chemotherapy and we will get this ball rolling. It's going to be a rough couple of weeks but I feel this time it is going to work. All we can do is continue to pray and leave it in God's hands.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Days End

Well, as the day has come to a close, Donald is doing good. He is very tired after today's events and extremely glad the day is over. They were able to get an IV on the second try by calling in the flight nurse. For those of you who don't know what a flight nurse is, they are the ones that go out in the helicopter to pick up patients. They are VERY good at putting in an IV. Donald received a bag of platelets today after they were able to get the IV started and the doctor pulled out his central line with no complications. The biggest downside to not having a central line is they have to stick him every morning to draw blood and then again after he gets platelets. It also puts a strain on getting his antibiotics because with only one IV line he can only have one thing going at a time. Luckily they took him off of one of the IV antibiotics and started him on an oral antibiotic. He now only has 1 antibiotic and 1 antifungal through his IV. Hopefully Donald will be able to get some rest tonight. He was up most of last night with severe back pain. So, he hasn't had much sleep over the past 24 hours. Praying for a restful night and good day tomorrow.

Not So Good News!

The doctor just came in and advised us that because of the fungal infection in Donald's blood they are going to have to remove his central line. She advised they will have to put in a regular IV line for the weekend and then put in a new central line on Monday. Now, the problems we are facing with this are:  it is extremely difficult to find a good vein to put in an IV and his platelets are so low that it is going to be difficult to get them high enough to do the procedure to put in a new line since his body is rejecting donor platelets. Donald's anxiety is elevated due to these issues. I know God is in control and will see us through all of this but Donald needs lots encouragement and reassurance. It's easy for us to tell him everything is going to be okay when we are not the ones stuck in the hospital fighting for our lives. Donald is getting discouraged and I can't blame him for worrying. I pray he will seek God's face and find peace knowing God is with him always.

The doctor also said that if all goes well this weekend then they will put in the central line Monday morning and start his chemo. I know everything will go well and he will get through all of this. God is so good to us and has blessed us during all of this. Sure, we have had hurdles to overcome but what is life without trials. For it is when we are broken that we can truly see Gods face. When life is going great we sometimes  fail to stop and say "Thank You Lord For All You Have Done" . We are too often caught up in our own lives to see all of the many blessings He has given us. God is Great and he will see us through this. No matter what Satan throws at us we will continue to Praise God because we know there are better days to come.

Desperate for Platelets

Donald had to get platelets once again yesterday. His body has built up antibodies to donor platelets so they are staying around 10,000. Basically, just as soon as he gets the platelets his bodies is destroying them. The doctors say that family members platelets are sometimes better and not rejected as easily so there are a few close relatives planning to donate to see if it makes a difference. He is getting platelets on a daily basis now and they are in short supply so if anyone can donate that would be great. You have to make an appointment to donate platelets though. You just give them the same code as blood (CY83) and his name when you call.

They started him on an IV anti-fungal yesterday because his cultures came back showing he has a yeast infection in his blood. That is why he started running fever the other day. I am not sure what that means as far as his chemotherapy but the nurse seems to think it will not interfere since he is no longer running fever. The doctor will be in around 11:30 this morning to let us know the plan. Yesterday she said he might start treatments today. Donald is very anxious about starting another round of chemo, especially this one. He remembers it all too well from childhood and he said it made him very sick. I am just praying it will get rid of these nasty leukemia blasts so that he can move forward.

His back has been hurting him a lot lately. We are not exactly sure what that is from. It could be from staying in the bed and not moving around. He has been trying to walk around the room and be a little more active but it's not easy when you have lost your strength. He is just tired and wants to go home so badly. I know he will be able to return home soon enough. This protocol is going to work. I just know it is!

Thanking the Lord for his blessings and praying for another good day.

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer.    Psalm 19:14

Thursday, July 7, 2011

God on the Mountain

Life is easy when your up on the mountain and you've got peace of mind like you've never known. But things change when you're down in the valley. Don't lose faith for your never alone. For the God on the mountain is still God in the valley. When things go wrong he'll make them right. The God of the good times is still God in the bad times. The God in the day is still God in the night. We talk the faith when we're up on the mountain. Talk come so easy when life's at it's best. Now it's down in the valley's, trials and temptations. That's when your faith is really put to the test.
"God on the Mountain" by the Gaithers (great song if you get the chance to listen to it)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Comment Problem Fixed!

I think I have fixed that problem we have been having with not being able to comment on the blog. So, if you would like you can try to comment now and see if it is working right. Thanks!

Disappointed

Well, Donald got the disappointing news this morning that they are not going to let him go home. He will be starting his new chemo protocol as early as tomorrow. They are just waiting on the cultures to come back clear to begin. His temperature got up to 102 in the early morning hours and he had to have another bag of platelets as well. His body is rejecting the donor platelets and is unable to make new ones due to the leukemia blasts in his marrow. It is important that they begin treatment as soon as possible. Donald was really looking forward to going home for a few days but I know God has a plan and he will return home soon enough. Praying this new protocol works and he is able to proceed with the bone marrow biopsy soon. He is so tired but I know he can find strength in the Lord.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Another Day

Donald had a really bad night last night. He was hurting pretty bad and started running fever this morning. They have put him on another antibiotic by IV and are not going to let him go home today. Not sure if they will let him go home at all now. They drew cultures today and they take 24 to 48 hours to grow. He had platelets first thing this morning and he had 2 units of blood this evening. They are watching his fever today and the doctor will let us know what they decide. For whatever reason, the Lord is not ready for him to return home just yet. He is watching over Donald and knows what is best. I am glad this happened at the hospital instead of waiting for him to get home. I am just as ready for him to be home as anyone but I know God is in control and he will see that he goes home when the timing is right. Thank you Lord for all of your small blessings in disguise. Although we may not know what He has planned, we must have faith in Him and trust HIM.

Monday, July 4, 2011

There's No Place Like Home

The day has gone very well. Donald has been in great spirits in preparation to return home. He had a long hot shower and sat in the chair for a bit today. He even let me give him a shave. He felt so much better. The doctor came by this morning and advised he is still okay to go home tomorrow. The plan is to give him is last round of antibiotics in the morning, give him a unit of platelets and then prepare him for discharge. He will be able to go home from Tuesday to Sunday. We will return to the hospital on Monday for round 3 of chemo. They do not have his protocol written yet so we don't know exactly what medications he will be getting on what days and for how long. The doctor is supposed to be calling MD Anderson in the morning to see if they have ever treated someone of Donald's unique condition. We will not know for sure until we return on Monday.

Visitors:   We know how much everyone would like to see Donald but we have been advised that it is in his best interest to not have any visitors while he is home. It is far to risky for him to catch something and he can't afford to get sick. Any illness may prevent him from treatment on Monday and that would not be good. He will also be very tired and needs to rest as much as he can while at home because the next few weeks are going to be really tough. I will continue to blog while he is at home so everyone can see how he is doing. We are praying he will have a save trip home, without complications, and be able to build his strength before returning to the hospital. Thank you all for your continued prayers and support. It means so much to us, especially Donald.

Another Site

I have created another site on Caring Bridge for people to read in hopes that other cancer patients may read it and be inspired. I just created it so I have not had a chance to journal yet. My plan it to transfer all of the blog entries to the Caring Bridge site. It will take some time so bare with me. I am however going to begin to journal each time I blog. I am going to keep both sites open so you can visit either site.  Please feel free to visit           http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/superman32     

Plans

Donald is doing good still. He is very tired but that is to be expected. He had lots of visitors yesterday which really wore him out. It was great for him to laugh and have a good time though. He really needed that. He slept pretty good last night and is still sleeping now. He is so eager to go home for a few days. He will finally be able to get some real rest. It will do wonders for his body and spirits. The doctor is still planning to let him go home tomorrow if everything is still going good, which I am sure it will be. The doctors have not made their rounds yet this morning and we don't have his lab print out yet but he seems to be doing better today. His color looks good and he has already been awake this morning raiding the goody basket someone brought him yesterday. He is doing so well considering all he has been through. It is so amazing the strength he has. He is still fighting and not giving up. "with God, all things are possible" "ALL THINGS".............

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Still Got Our Gloves On

The fight isn't over yet. The infection disease doctors want Donald to complete his Antibiotic IV Therapy so he is going to have to stay in the hospital until at least Tuesday. It will be great for him to be home and be able to sleep in his own bed and finally rest. We are going home to recharge our batteries and return refreshed and ready for round 3. He has been sleeping a lot today and everything still looks good on his labs. He is really handling everything well and is eager to go home for a few days. Donald has had several visitors over the past few days which has been wonderful for him. It really lifts his spirits when someone comes to visit.  We still continue to pray each and every day for healing, strength and courage.

Praise God!!!

The doctor just left and suggested Donald go home for a few days to rest. She said she is going to try and get everything ready for him to go home by tomorrow, Monday at the latest. She said he will still have to come back every morning to get platelets but that only takes a few hours. She is sending him home for 4-5 days and when he returns to the hospital he will begin Protocol #3. This protocol includes high doses of Methotrexate which is one of the big guns of chemo and if anything is going to kill this cancer this is sure to do the job. We will remain faithful that the Lord will heal his broken body and restore him to new. Thank you Lord for this wonderful news. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

Bad News!

Donald is NOT in remission! Chemo didn't do anything! He has 80% leukemia cells in his marrow. Not sure where we go from here. Will let you know when we hear more.

Nothing Yet!

Donald had a bad night last night. He is still hurting a lot from the bone marrow biopsy. We had to call the doctor twice last night for additional pain medication. He is exhausted today. The doctor just left and they still have not heard back from pathology about his bone marrow. We are still waiting patiently or at least trying to. It is not easy. I am faithful that the Lord is going to take care of Donald but I am still human and occasionally it gets the best of me. Everything is still looking good on his labs with the exception of his platelets. They are still low and he will have to have another transfusion today. His blood levels look great though. They actually came up some on there own. He is resting right now and doesn't appear to be too anxious. Hopefully he will sleep until the doctor comes back with the results. The Dr. said she would be back when she knows something. Praying for a good report.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Still Waiting

We still don't know if Donald is in remission. The doctor said she didn't have enough information to determine if he is in remission or not. She advised it would be tomorrow before we would know anything. The Lord is teaching us patience each and every day. Donald is still very sore from the multiple biopsy's but he is doing very well. His kidneys look great and his labs are pretty normal. His white count has come up to 2.0 which is absolutely wonderful. He had to get blood and platelets yesterday and only had to get platelets today.  The doctor has ordered a steroid for him to take with his platelets now to keep him from spiking a fever. So far it is working great. He hasn't had a fever in several days. His jaw is healed for the most part. There is only a tiny little knot left right under his jaw bone.  Doctor Elkin wouldn't say when he might go home. She wants to wait for the biopsy results. It's hard to believe we have been in the hospital now for 3 months, except for those 4 short days he was able to go home in the beginning. It's like our second home. Thanking the Lord for his wonderful blessings and continued healing. Praying still for remission and also that Donald's platelet level will start to rise on its own.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Biopsy Complete

They were able to do Donald's bone marrow biopsy within 20 minutes this morning. It hurt pretty bad but it was nothing like yesterday. The doctor said we should know the results of the aspirate tomorrow and the biopsy by Friday. He also advised that if Donald is in remission they will let him go home for a few days but they want to get him in for the transplant as soon as possible. Dr. Herrin said he spoke with Bone Marrow yesterday and they have everything complete for when he is in remission. So, he could possibly be going to transplant as early as next week. We are all praying he is in remission and the transition to bone marrow transplant will be go smoothly. We are all anxious about the results but we just have to leave it in God's hands.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Praying

Donald is still hurting from the attempt at the biopsy this morning. He is very anxious about having to go through it all over again in the morning. We are praying it is much less painful and stressful. He had such a bad morning. He is still pretty worked up over it. I am really hoping he will be able to sleep tonight. They are doing the biopsy about 8 am. I am glad the actual heme doctor is going to do it this time instead of one of his trainees. I know the Lord is going to take care of him. On a brighter note! When I came back to the hospital after work today he was eating his dinner. It's so good to see he is getting his appetite back. His jaw continues to heal a little each day and the only thing we are waiting on is his platelets to come up and his calcium to go down. All of his other labs are fine. Thanking God for his blessings and praying he continues to bless us. Like the Casting Crowns song says " I will praise you in this storm".

Biopsy Failed

They tried for over an hour to get a biopsy on Donald with no success. The doctor advised that his bones have been softened from all of the Chemo which makes it very difficult to get the aspirate. Dr. Herrin has rescheduled the biopsy for tomorrow morning. He is going to try to get aspirate but if not he will just get a piece of bone and they should be able to obtain all the information they need from that. The doctor said that even that will be a challenge because soft bone doesn't like to stick inside the needle like hard bone. I am putting my faith in God that he is going to allow everything to go smoothly tomorrow and they will be able to obtain everything they need from the biopsy. I know that my GOD is all powerful and it doesn't matter what the doctors say. HE is the Great Physician and can do all things. I pray that God will guide the hands of the doctor and allow him to get it on the first try. I put my Faith in HIM.

Update

Sorry I have not blogged in a few days. Donald is still doing good. His jaw is almost healed. He now only has a small swollen spot on his neck and has been able to start eating a little. He has been pretty restless over the past few days in anticipation of the upcoming events. He is getting a bone marrow biopsy this morning which makes him anxious. We will hopefully know by tomorrow afternoon if he is in remission. He has had to have platelets everyday for the past few days and had to get blood last night. The doctor says everything is looking good and he should be able to go home soon. Praying he is in remission and that he is well enough to return home this week. I know he will feel so much better when he is home. :)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Still Looking Good

Today was an okay day. Donald didn't feet great but what do you expect when you have been in the hospital for as long as he has? His chest X-Ray came back with a small amount of fluid in them with the potential for infection so the doctor told him to get out of bed and move around. He also advised him to do his breathing exercises. His jaw looks so much better this afternoon but it is still hurting quite bad. He had to get platelets today and spiked a fever during the transfusion but it has began to go back down. He didn't have to get any blood today and all of his lab work looks great accept his calcium which is still pretty high. They are still giving him lots of fluids to try and bring his calcium levels down. Hopefully we will soon see some good results in that department. He was awake all day today and is now sound asleep. Praying he is able to to rest tonight. Thanking the Lord for a great day!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Donald has not felt very good today. His jaw has been hurting him pretty bad and he, I think, is just exhausted from being in the hospital. His lab work came back good today and if it wasn't for the infection in his jaw he would probably be going home by this weekend. His calcium is the only thing that is high. I'm not sure what they plan to do to bring that down. He had not ran fever for almost 2 days and it creeped up just a little this afternoon.  The ENT came by again today and said she thinks he should stay on the IV antibiotics for 2 weeks and they would just watch it. That was great news because one of the other doctors was talking about sending him to surgery to cut it open. The swelling appears to be going down and the antibiotics are working from what we can tell. She said she would check into getting a nurse to come to the house and give him his IV meds so he could go home for a few weeks and rest. The only set back is his central line. For some reason they don't like to send you home with those. Donald is supposed to have his bone marrow biopsy Saturday but the doctors said they are probably going to wait and do it the first of the week. We are praying he is in remission. Donald told me tonight that he just doesn't know how much more he can handle. He is getting worn down with everything that keeps popping up. I wish with all of my heart there was something I could do to make all of this better. A way to take away his pain. I know there are better days ahead and all of this will just be a memory but it's really hard to sit by and wait knowing there is nothing you can do. Donald and I have started watching the movie series Love Comes Softly and it has really opened our eyes to many things. Thanking the Lord again for another good day and for His continued healing. He has answered so many prayers thus far and I believe the best is yet to come.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Chillin!

Donald hasn't ran a fever all day today. Praise the Lord!!! The highest it got was when he got platelets this afternoon which was only 99.4. Hence the title!!! His neck/jaw looks better today and they changed his antibiotics yet again to give him the same coverage without having to give him the antibiotics so often. All he had to get today was platelets and they didn't have to run any tests. He has had a pretty easy day, considering. He is also talking more like himself too. He is still having a little trouble remembering things but he is much better than he was. He is doing great overall. Giving God all the Glory. Without Him Donald wouldn't be doing as good as he is. Still praying for his continued healing and that he will soon be able to go home and rest for a little while.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Doing Better

Donald is doing better today. He still has a slight temperature and his jaw is still swollen but he has been talking a little more normal today. They are still not 100% sure what is causing the swelling in his jaw. One doctor says it could be MRSA and one says its just a swollen gland. The ENT doc came in this afternoon and stuck a very large gauge needle in his neck to see if she could get anything to drain but nothing came out. It's good in the sense that there is no infection in there but it's bad in the sense that it didn't provide any relief. For now, he is to keep swishing with his 3 mouth rinses and keep applying warm compresses. They changed his antibiotics again today to see if they can get him on something that will treat the "infection". We are just praying and waiting to see what will happen. Hopefully these new antibiotics will get rid of whatever it is. He is still not able to eat solid food and it is very difficult to take his pills. He went from turning up all of his pills and swallowing them down in one gulp to taking them one at a time. He didn't have to have any blood or platelets today and his white count has continued to rise, which is a good thing. The higher his white count gets, the better able he will be to fight off these infections. We continue to pray for healing and strength. Thanking the Lord for all of his blessings. I once read somewhere that you can't ask God "why me Lord?" for all of the bad things that happen in your life if you don't ask the same of the good things that happen. So often we take for granted the many blessings we have.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Constant Battle

Donald has not been feeling very well today. It started yesterday when his fever jumped to 103. His jaw has more than double in size over the past few days and they still are not positive what is causing it. They called in the ENT today and she thinks it could be an infection in one of his spit glands. She recommends warm compresses and massages along with the antibiotics he is currently taking. He went down for a CT of his jaw and also for his head because he has been talking kind of loopy lately. He will be talking to you about one thing one minute and the next minute he is off in another world talking about something totally random that doesn't make any sense. The doctors say it's from his calcium being so high but again they are not positive on that either. He is just not himself. He is confused all of the time and has a hard time rationalizing things. I am worried about him but I know that is just Satan talking. He is trying to get into my mind and make me worry and get me down. I remain faithful unto the Lord and trust He is going to heal Donald. He may have to endure and overcome a few things along the way but there are better days ahead. God loves him and is going to take care of him. He watches over us and is there for us in our darkest hour.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

More Blood and Platelets

Donald was able to sleep again last night and didn't actually wake up until about lunch today. He is doing okay. He is spiking fevers again for some reason and the doctor says it will take some time for the new antibiotic to start working. He is getting his platelets right now and will then get 2 units of blood when they finish. He feels kinda crummy but it's probably due to low platelets and blood. Once they get some "go go juice", as he calls it, pumped into him he should feel much better. If we could just get his jaw to stop hurting he would be great. He will be getting his final round of Chemo in the morning and then we wait. Praying he is in remission and will get to go home soon to rest.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

So Blessed!

Donald has had a great 24 hours. His fever has come down significantly. He slept almost all night and has been awake all day. I was able to get him in the shower today and to also sit on the couch for a little while to eat his lunch. I had a little help coaxing him to sit on the couch though. My mom and Aunt came to visit today so it was 1 against 4. (women no less) Me, Pat, Mom and Granny. LOL!!! He had platelets today and they gave him some more magnesium through his IV. They also changed his antibiotic to try and help with his jaw swelling. The swelling has gone down a lot but it still hurts pretty bad. The doctor said she is pretty sure it's just an infection (abscess). Hopefully it will heal without problems. It should, considering all the medications and mouthwashes he is own. He is now up to 3 different mouth rinses. Needless to say he has a very clean mouth. All of his cultures came back negative and his EKG looked good. His white count has come up to 0.6 which is good since it has been a 0 for the past few weeks. After he has his last Chemo treatment it will have to be above 1.0 in order to go home and his blood levels and platelets will have to be stable as well. His doctor says he will be in here at least another week. But, that all depends on him and how fast his counts come up. I say God will decide when he gets to go home. I am still shooting for him to be home by next Friday. I told him that could be my birthday present. :) Everything seems to be going much better and aside from a few minor set backs he has been truly blessed throughout this whole ordeal. Our God is and always will be an Awesome God and he has a plan. Thank you Lord for all that you have done and all that you will do.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Who Turned Up the Heat?

Donald has not had a very good day today. He has kept a fever and it is still running at 102 degrees. The doctors have yet to find the culprit. All they are saying is they will keep an eye on it and added another antibiotic the other day. Needless to say it is making Donald very anxious and he just feels terrible. His kidney function is slightly better today but still not at a normal range. They are still giving him fluids to try and flush his kidneys. He had to get platelets again today and he is now getting his first of two units of blood for the night. His jaw is still slightly swollen but it doesn't look any worse. Donald says it still hurts pretty bad and he is unable to eat still. He is worn out but I can't seem to get him to go to sleep. I think he is afraid he might miss something. LOL! He is so tired that he is having these random conversations about all kinds of things that don't make any sense. He will start to tell me something and completely forget what he was saying or fall asleep mid sentence. I really hope he gets to go home soon so that he can get some much needed rest. They had to give him some medication through his IV to lower his calcium because it was getting pretty high. We will not know until in the morning if it worked. Please pray that Donald is able to rest tonight and that his kidneys and calcium levels improve. Also, pray his fever breaks and the swelling in his jaw goes down. The Lord knows what is best for Donald and will see him through this. Only God can heal him.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

No News is Good News!

Donald's cultures came back negative, his X-Rays appear to be clear and no red flags as to his jaw swelling being serious. It could just be a bacterial infection from him biting the inside of his cheek in his sleep the other night. It is a little more swollen today but not too bad. He hasn't eaten much over the past few days because he can't open his mouth very wide and it hurts to chew. His labs still look okay but his kidney function is still decreasing a little. They gave him extra fluids today to try and correct the problem. He only has one more round of Chemo on Monday and then hopefully we will be close to going home for a week or two. Praying the Lord will heal his kidneys and his jaw and give him strength endure what is ahead.

But those who trust in the Lord with find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.     Isaiah 40:31

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

New Symptom

Over that past few days Donald has had a slight pain in his jaw down into his neck. It started out small but today it hurts really bad. He can hardly eat. They took him down today to do X-Rays and we have not heard anything back from that yet. The doctor said his Lymph Node feels slightly swollen but he is not sure what is causing it. That is more than likely the source of his fever. He has been running fever since yesterday and it is making him feel pretty bad. He is still tired and his stomach has began to give him trouble again since they added another antibiotic yesterday. They had to give him platelets again today and he did fine. His kidney function has been fluctuating from normal to slightly abnormal this past week. We are praying everything will go smoothly over the next few weeks and he will be able to go home sometime next week for at least a week. Please pray there is nothing serious going on with his jaw/neck and that his white count will return to normal. Pray also for his kidneys and that his stomach trouble will correct itself. Thank you all for your constant support and for all of your prayers and cards. It means a lot to Donald to get a card in the mail. It lets him know he is not alone and there are many people praying for him everyday.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Play Along!

Okay, as you can see to your right, there is a poll. Donald and I would like your honest opinion. Okay we are just having fun but we still would like your opinion. So, play along and cast your vote. Donald thought my poll question was pretty funny but doesn't think anyone will vote so lets prove him wrong. :)

Donald had a rough start to the morning! He woke up with fever and began to panic. The doctor told him that he doesn't think there is anything to worry about because he looks good and his labs are good. He said that he is surprised Donald has not ran a fever before now with such a low white count. Donald has been very blessed to be fever free up until this point. They drew some labs and cultured his blood and urine. They will not know anything from the blood cultures until tomorrow. They gave him platelets this afternoon and he tolerated them very well. He was extremely relieved that everything went well after the last time. The doctor told him this morning that sometimes people will have a reaction to platelets because of what the donor ate for breakfast that morning, weird. Anyway, he is doing good tonight. He was able to rest for a few hours today and aside from the, now, low grade fever he is feeling pretty good. The doctor has changed his order to only have vitals taken every 8 hours so maybe he will be able to sleep some tonight. Praying for a restful night and an even better day tomorrow. Praying the Lord will take his fever away and heal his body.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Reaction!!!

We are taking it easy after a long night of platelets and blood. They didn't start Donald's blood products until about 6:30 last night and he had a slight reaction to this round of platelets. His eyes and lips started to swell and his throat started to feel itchy and had a burning sensation down his esophagus. They gave him some extra benedryl and it finally started to improve so that he was able to start getting his blood at 10:30 last night. So, we were up most of the night because they have to constantly check your vitals while you are getting blood products and it took about 2 1/2 - 3 hours for each bag of blood to run in. They finally finished running it in around 4:30 this morning. Then, they came to draw his blood about 5:30 and the day begins because around 6 am the nurses, nursing assistant and doctors begin there final rounds and the next shift begins their morning rounds. So, we had someone in the room every hour until 12 noon today. Finally, everyone cleared out and Donald was able to go to sleep and rest for a short while. His nap was short lived because he was having a nightmare and woke up in a panic about an hour later. He told me he was dreaming that the doctors kept running all kinds of test trying to find something and saying "we've got to find it, we've got to find it". Nothing like being in the hospital and dreaming about undergoing horrible testing to find something else other than what you already have. He has since taken something for anxiety and calmed down again. He is now resting peacefully.  He is so exhausted from the events of this week.

We spoke to the doctor and now have a better idea of what we can expect. She said that if all goes as planned he should be able to go home after his last chemo treatment. That is, once his white count come up above 1,000. Right now it is at 0 which means he has absolutely no immune system. Once his counts improve he will go home for 1-2 weeks. He will then come into the clinic for a bone marrow biopsy and return home to wait for the results. We are praying he is in remission. If he is in remission they will then schedule him to be admitted into the bone marrow transplant unit to begin his chemo for the transplant. That is the plan anyway. But as we all know things can change in an instant.

Over the past 2 nights we have met 2 of the bone marrow nurses because they are so short on patients in bone marrow transplant that some of the bone marrow nurses are working on the cancer floor. They have been extremely nice and very informative about the bone marrow unit. I think, aside from what he will be going through, he is going to feel more at home and like the bone marrow unit much more than the cancer floor. The nurses seem so much more caring and seem to really enjoy what they do. They want the very best for their patients.  We have had an extraordinary nurse during the day this weekend. She is always smiling and loves to talk. She has this bubbly personality that almost makes you forget why you are here. I wish all nurses were that way.

My prayer is that God will heal Donald's body. I pray he continues to give him strength and courage to endure what lies ahead. I pray the Lord will continue to work in Donald's life and draw him nearer to God and not let Satan plant those little seeds of doubt that cause him to lose focus. Our God is an Awesome God and I know he will see us through to the end. He is with us always. All we have to do is call on him and he is there to offer comfort in times of trouble.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Ooops!!!

Okay so our day began at 5:00 this morning. Why? Well.....the nursing assistant came in bright and early this morning to do Donald's vitals and was just about to leave the room when she realized she had one more urinal to empty. I can still see it in my mind. It's almost like a movie where they show someone dropping something in slow motion. The assistant heads toward the side tray table and as she reaches for Donald's very full urinal she hits the urinal. Urine splashes out as it topples over and pours into Donald's bed and onto the floor. Donald immediately gets out of bed and changes his socks and shorts and wipes down with a wash cloth while the assistant is changing his linens and cleaning up the urine. Donald returns to his bed and his nurse enters the room inquiring as to what is going on and we explained. The assistant leaves the room and the nurse notices there is still urine on the floor, the tray table and, get this, Donald's phone. The nurse gets a towel and wipes up the urine and then wipes down the tray table with a disinfectant wipe. Donald opened his phone and poured the urine out of it and the nurse dried all of the parts with a wash cloth. I took some alcohol wipes and wiped down his phone as best I could but it still smelled like urine. Donald was okay with the urine on him and the bed but when he discovered his phone was hit he was not so chipper. It wasn't very funny this morning but looking back all I can do is laugh. Luckily, that was not a sign of how the rest of the day was going to go. He had a pretty good day other than that little mishap. He didn't have to have any blood or platelets today and all of his labs look very good. We are going to have to talk to the doctor more tomorrow about what the plan is with his treatment because from what the doctor said this morning Donald may not get to go home until after his bone marrow transplant which will put him staying in the hospital until August/September. I really hate that for him if that is the case because he wants to go home so bad. If only for just a day or two. I am not going to worry though because God has a plan and he will make sure Donald is where he needs to be to get better. God is still in control and if we will just be patient and let him guide us we will see the bigger picture.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

All Alone

Well Donald made it through his first day alone at the hospital. I went back to work this week and Patricia wasn't feeling well today so he had to make it on in own today. He did pretty good though.  He only called me twice. I think it has been harder on me to go back to work than it has been for him. All I do is think about how he is doing while I'm at work.  I went to see him on my lunch break because he was getting a little anxious about some things (and maybe because I missed him and just wanted to check on him). He calmed down and took a little nap after I left. Almost all of his labs were normal today. He didn't have to have platelets, blood or any additional test today. It was just an uneventful day for him. That worked out great because you have to watch everything these nurses do. They sometimes don't pay attention and have slight oversights. He is in a good mood this evening and appears to be on the mend. He has been very talkative and I think he missed me just a little. :) He only has 2 more chemo treatments and then hopefully he will be able to go home for a week or two. Wish the treatments didn't have to be so far apart. His last treatment will be on the 20th and then we will start watching his counts. After the last chemo treatment it's all up to his body, which is controlled by GOD, as to when he can get out of here. He will feel so much better at home.  Praying for healing, strength and patience. God is all powerful and continues to bless us each and every day.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Long Stressful Day

Well, I had to return to work today. Leaving the hospital this morning was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. It's really hard to work when all you can do is think about what's happening at the hospital. It was a little easier knowing that Patricia was there with him but, as you all know, it's nothing like actually being there. I talked to Donald several times today and each time I talked to him he was little more irritated and anxious than the time before. He and his nurse kind of butted heads today. Their personalities just don't mesh well. She had him pretty irritated by the time I got back to the hospital. Not good. Also, I think a lot of his anxiety was related to not getting any sleep last night because they didn't hang his blood and platelets until after 8 last night. They finished running it in around 3am.  He was supposed to have Chemo first thing this morning but they had to get his potassium and magnesium up before they could give it to him. They didn't get started with the IV supplements until after lunch which had to run over about 2 hours and then they had to wait to draw blood to see if it came up. They drew lab work shortly after I arrived this afternoon to check his levels.  Finally, around 7pm everything was good to go and they hung his Chemo. It ran over a 2 hour period. Donald has tolerated the chemo very good so far. He was just slightly nauseated but a little phenergan took care of that. He was able to eat a big bowl of soup and crackers and he is now eating a chocolate chip cookie. YUM!!! I am praying he has a much better day tomorrow. I am sure he will.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Drawing Nearer

Well we are only a day away from having another Chemo treatment. Donald is still doing about the same. He is still really tired and is stomach issues have not resolved very much. He hasn't felt very well today. He is sounding a little nasally like he may have a cold. He has been chewing on the inside of his cheeks and lips from being anxious so he has blood blisters in his mouth. His magnesium and potassium were low again today so he had an extra dose of magnesium and they also gave him an awful tub of potassium supplement that Donald said felt like it was going to melt his tongue. So, you can only imagine how it felt on the inside of his cheeks.  He is trying hard to stay positive and really wants to go home. He has at least 3 weeks left before he will be able to go home for a little while. We are prayerful that all will go well and he will be able go home and stay home for the full 2 weeks this time, if not longer. Thanking God for all of his blessings and praying for Donald to keep his strength up and continue to heal.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

A Little Better!

Donald slept most of the night and all morning. He woke up around lunch time and has been awake all afternoon. His stomach is getting a little better as the days go by. He has eaten more today than yesterday without getting sick so that's good. I spoke with the Bone Marrow Transplant team and they have found 2 good matches for Donald. They are going to do further testing to see which one is the best. They will still check new donor's as they register to see if they are a better match though until he is ready for the transplant because the better the match the better his chances. So, everyone that is interested in being a donor please don't hesitate to register with Be The Match. It will be at least a month before he will be able to have the transplant because he has to complete this chemo protocol and be in remission before they can start the process. We are praying all will go well and he will be in remission this time. Everyone please pray that his tummy issues resolve quickly as well because it is tiring him tremendously. Thanks to all who have continued to pray for him and follow his progress. It means so much to have so many people pulling for him. God is Great and we are blessed.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Sleeping Like a Baby!

Donald once again slept most of the night and all day. He had several visitors today but didn't get to visit with all of them because he was just too tired. The doctor seems to think Donald is finally catching up on his sleep after not sleeping for days. The Chemo treatments also make him pretty tired. One of the side effects is being unusually tired and sleeping more than normal. I am glad to see him sleeping for a change. He really needs the rest.   He had to get a bag of platelets, they gave him some potassium and are still giving him magnesium supplements. He hasn't had much of a appetite today. He is still having tummy trouble and has been nauseated. He got sick late this evening and gave the nurse something to clean up in the bathroom sink. Guess that's better than the floor. Praying the Lord will take away this stomach trouble and he will be able to eat better tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Lazy Day

Donald slept most of the night and almost all day. He is still have tummy issues but not quite as bad. He is still tired but enjoying some much needed time off from Chemo. Everything has gone routinely today and all of his labs looked very good today. He didn't have to have any blood products today which was great. We are still praying the Lord will continue to heal Donald's body and help with his tummy troubles.

BLOOD DRIVE:
There will be a blood drive for Donald at First Baptist Church Byram on June 22nd from 3pm-8pm. 

Monday, May 30, 2011

Protocol 2 Day 7

We had a LONG night last night. Donald was up and down all night with tummy problems. Bless his heart. He is so very tired. The doctor prescribed him something a little stronger to try and calm his stomach. On a positive note, he had his chemo this morning and appears to have no adverse effects. He took a short nap this morning during and after the chemo. He is awake and eating now which is a very good sign. Thanking God for his blessings and for allowing everything to go smoothly this morning. Donald was very anxious about the new drug and is very relieved that it didn't pack as big of a punch as he worried it would. Praying the rest of the day goes just a good and his tummy checks up today.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Protocol 2 Day 6

Today went pretty good. Kinda of a lazy day for both of us. Donald didn't have as much trouble with the Chemo because they went ahead and pre-medicated him with steroids. He slept until about 6pm today and seemed to be doing good when he woke up. Today was the last day of the "red devil" medication. He had 2 more units of blood today as well. Tomorrow he will have the brand new drug and we have no idea how he will react to it. Hopefully he will do okay and have minimal side effects.

Red Devil

Well it is 3am and Donald and I have been up for the past 2 1/2 hours because the air conditioning went out again. They said a transformer blew and shut down the elevators and air conditioning. It was originally thought they wouldn't have the air back on until the morning but just moments ago we felt the wonderful coolness of air. Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! You don't realize how much you depend on air conditioning until it's gone. I was sweating so I know Donald was about to melt. On a positive note, I went down to the kitchen a moment ago and just so happened to run into a nurse that use to work on the bone marrow floor. She asked about Donald and I told her about his skin being red and burning and she immediately said "Red Devil". Apparently she use to see it a lot on the transplant floor. She described it as a sunburn from the inside out. She advised that he would begin to peel just as if he had sunburn. I hate that he has this terrible condition but I am also relieved that it has a name and is common. Donald was concerned that he was not tolerating the chemo very well because no one could tell us why he was turning red and having the burning sensation. It made Donald feel so much better when I told him what she had said. Guess it's a good thing the air went out and Donald wanted some milk. The Lord sure does work in mysterious ways. Once again He shows us His power and that He is in control.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Protocol 2 Day 5

Donald has been sleeping off and on for the most part of the day. He is still having stomach issues but the doctors finally ordered something to help. He has been eating in between sleeping. The steroids give him a pretty big appetite. We have to watch him closely because he sometimes falls asleep with food or drink in hand and ends up wearing it if you don't catch him dozing off. He only has one more day of this chemo and then one day of the newest chemo drug and then he will have a 7 day break. Once again he had 2 rounds of chemo today and he has gradually gotten redder as the day has gone on. He is blotchy red from his head to his feet. He woke up a little while ago and said it felt as though he was on fire, literally. The nurse called the doctor and they gave him something to help but it doesn't seem to be doing much. He says his legs are burning, especially when he stands. He is trying to relax right now and let the medications work. Praying they will give him some relief. It is not fun watching someone hurt especially when it is someone you love. You feel so helpless. I wish there was some way for me to take away his pain. I would gladly take his place if I could and I know I am not the only one. God has a plan for Donald and even though he may not be able to see it now, one day it will be revealed to him. I can already see the wonderful things the Lord is doing and how he is using Donald to reach so many people. The Lord can take the worst of situations and turn them into something beautiful. We just have to open our eyes and try to see the bigger picture. Thank you Lord for today and I pray Donald is able to sleep peacefully tonight. As I have been typing in the Blog, Donald has fallen asleep. He appears to be resting very comfortably and the redness has began to subside. Thank you God for answered prayers. :)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Protocol 2 Day 4

Well, we are over half way to the end of this 7 day initiation of Chemo. He has 3 more days of chemo before he has a 7 day break. His kidneys are doing good still and his blood levels are good. He will probably need platelets tomorrow as they are right on the verge of falling below the transfusion mark. His magnesium is a little low and has been for a while now. They have been giving him Mag. supplements to keep it stable but it seems like whenever they stop giving it to him it drops again. I guess as long as they can keep it up with supplements it's okay. He has been pretty tired today and this Chemo seems to be taking a tole on him. He is seeing green during and shortly after they give him the morning chemo treatment. The doctor explained that some chemo is toxic to the eyes but since it clears pretty quickly and isn't getting any worse it shouldn't cause any permanent damage to his eyes. He has also started to break out in some sort of rash under his arms that the doctor can't explain. The doctor advised to try benedryl and hydrocortizone cream. It is more than likely chemo related but we are going to watch it and make sure it doesn't get any worse. The chemo is also upsetting his stomach a good bit.

He is trying to stay positive and is talking about all of the things he wants to do when he gets out of the hospital. I am so glad to hear him talking about the future instead of worrying he will never make it home. He is so funny sometimes because he fights his sleep. Just when you think he is out and resting, his head pops up and he looks at you. He looks like a little bobble head doll sometimes. :)

Lord we lay our burdens and troubles at your feet. We are turning it all over to you. You are the Great Physician and we know you will heal Donald's broken body. You are the Almighty God and we praise you. Thank you Lord for all of your blessings.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Protocol 2 Day 3

Well today went much like yesterday. The first round of Chemo zapped him pretty bad but he was able to recover, for the most part,  by the end of the day except for being extremely tired. You can tell this Chemo is really doing something as apposed to the former protocol where he didn't get sick at all. He is still hanging in there and doing good, considering. He didn't have to have blood or platelets today so that was good. Thanking God for another good day.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Protocol 2 Day 2

Chemo hit Donald pretty hard this morning. He had his first round of one of the new chemo drugs about 9am and before it was finished he was having shortness of breath and rapid heart beat. This chemo is more commonly given to children and is pretty strong. His vitals were fairly normal and we just had to let the chemo run its course.  He is better now and is trying to rest. He is getting his second round of chemo for the day and it doesn't appear to be as hard on him. This one is something he has had in the past and is frequently used on adults. He will be getting chemo twice a day through Saturday and then back down to once a day for 2 days. He will be getting 2 units of blood today and will probably get platelets tomorrow. His kidney function is perfectly normal and even continues to improve everyday. Thanking God for his continued improvement and praying for healing.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Chemo Protocol 2 Day 1

Donald had his first round of Chemo for this protocol this afternoon and appears to be tolerating it very well. He has not had any nausea or other side effects thus far. His kidney function is completely normal and all things considered his other lab work looks good. He has been resting most of the day and appears to be in good spirits. Thanking God for a great start to his treatment and for a clear direction in the way he should go.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Bone Marrow Complete

They just finished Donald's bone marrow biopsy. Everything went very well. He was able to get comfortable with the help of a Boppie Pillow. They also were able to get the bone and aspirate all in one stick as apposed to 3. God is so good! Now he just needs an echo of his heart and 3 ekg's and he will be set for Chemo tomorrow. Thanking God for all of his blessing and praying that all will continue to go well.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Bone Marrow

If anyone would like to go ahead and register to be a bone marrow donor you can go to www.marrow.org. It only takes about 5 minutes to register and they send a kit to you. This is the best way to become a donor and even if you are not a match for Donald maybe you will be a match for someone else.

Yet Another Night Without Rest

All was going good last night until about an hour after we went to sleep. Donald woke up in  excruciating pain from his head to his toes. We could not figure out what was causing the pain. His nurse called the doctor and they gave him some additional pain medication which didn't help. After about 2 hours and 2 more medications he was finally able to rest for a little while but by that time the day shift doctors, nurses, etc... started coming in every hour on the hour waking him up. He is still hurting but not quite as bad as last night. The doctors and surgeons aren't sure why he is hurting all over but think maybe it has something to do with moving around so much yesterday and possibly because he didn't have anything to eat or drink for so long. Hopefully he will start to feel better once he is able to sleep. He was finally getting comfortable a little while ago and they came to get him for a chest X-Ray that we knew nothing about. The nurse came and told us it's one of the test to get him ready for Chemo. She also informed us that on Monday he will be having another echo of his heart, an ekg, more lab work and of course the bone marrow biopsy in preparation for his treatment. So, Monday will be a very busy day. On a more positive note, his kidney's are looking good and his chest looks great. It appears he is on the road to recovery. They are still planning to start Chemo Tuesday unless something changes. On one hand we are ready to start Chemo but on the other hand we are dreading it. It will not be easy but the Lord will watch over him just as he has been doing for the past 32 years. Healing is not far away. There are better days yet to come.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Great News

We get down to the IR department to have his drain put in and find out that the abscess on his chest is just a hematoma. :) They drew 20cc of blood out of it and said he didn't need a drain. They advised it would heal on it's on. They sent a culture to the lab to be sure but it did not appear to have any infection in it at all. When we returned to the room and removed the bandage, the abscess was reduced by at least 50%. It is still draining blood and looks really good. We were so relieved to find out he didn't need a drainage tube. His kidney's are still improving and the plan is to do another bone marrow biopsy Monday and start Chemo Tuesday. Still praying for strength and healing. To God be the glory, GREAT things he has done!!

Another Biopsy

Just found out that all of the tests they did for him to be on the research protocol have expired. So, he is going to have to have another bone marrow biopsy possibly Monday to make sure the diagnosis is still the same. The doctor says he knows it will be the same but they have to do the test to put him on the Chemo. Maybe I am just an optimist but wouldn't it be wonderful if they did the biopsy and he was in remission! I know God is all powerful and if it is his will it can happen. Speak those things that are not as though they are. I will remain faithful. For I know God is in control and can do all things. He performs miracles each and every day. All things happen for a reason and God has a plan for Donald. We as Christians need to stop looking at the here and now and let God work because he is all knowing and he will never leave us. We have to have faith. Everything is going to be okay!

Change of Plan

The surgical team came by yesterday and did an ultrasound on Donald's chest and found there is some accumulation of fluid deeper than they anticipated. The surgeon said she believes it's just fluid and there is no infection but they don't won't it to turn into an infection. They are going to take him down to IR this morning and put another drain in his chest to drain the rest of the fluid off.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Improvement

I was able to get Donald to take a short walk around the floor last night. He was pretty tired when we returned to the room but it appears to have helped his kidney function. We spoke with the doctor this morning and his kidneys improved significantly overnight. Praise the Lord! His chest is still healing but he has a small abscess just beneath the surface that they are going to have to drain. It will be just a minor surgical procedure that they can do at bedside. So far the steroids have not caused his blood sugar to spike and we are hoping it stays that way. We did talk with the doctor about alternatives to finger sticks because his fingers have been stuck so many times and are still numb from the Chemo. So, if his sugar does start to rise they can just take blood from his central line.

We had a great visit from the hospital chaplain yesterday which I believe greatly uplifted his spirits. The good news about his kidneys made him feel a lot better too. He is anxious about having the abscess drained but he will feel so much better when it's done. His blood levels are also rising and that always helps him to feel better. His platelet count is falling a little each day but that is expected. It is still at a safe level and he hasn't had to have a platelet transfusion yet this time. There has been so much good news today. Thanking God for everything.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Back On Steroids

Well Donald slept good last night once he finally was able to go to sleep. His kidney's did not improve any since yesterday and his calcium levels have been running high so they are going to put him on steroids for 5 days to see if that will bring the calcium levels down and improve his kidney function. They have run several test to try and determine why his calcium is high and they can find nothing. If the steroids don't work we have to go to plan B and start him on the alternative Chemo protocol. The doctor said he will be starting Chemo this weekend one way or the other. We are running out of time and he needs to start treatment. I told Donald this morning that if his kidney function did not improve and he has to go on the alternative protocol then it was Gods way of telling us that is the best route. If his kidney's improve then we will know the research protocol is the best choice. Just because the doctors think something is best doesn't always make it so. God is in control and will make sure he goes on the right protocol to treat this disease and be cured. Donald is getting a little anxious about having to start Chemo and wants to go home terribly bad. There are day's when he will tell me that he is afraid he is never going back home. He needs everyone's prayers now more than ever. Medically speaking, he is doing great but mentally he is struggling. It's harder as an adult to stay positive because you know too much but, I know he is strong enough to beat this and he will be even stronger when this is all over. I find comfort in the Lord and he has told me everything is going to be okay. This is just another trial that he has to overcome. Satan plants seeds of doubt in our minds to try and turn our focus from God and to fear the things of this world but the Lord tells us we have nothing to fear.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Progress

Today has been a good day for Donald. He was able to eat 2 full meals and took a 3 hour nap. I wheeled him downstairs a little while ago and we sat by the fountain and talked for about 30 minutes. It was good to get him out of this room for a little while. It seems to have lifted his spirits a little. I am hoping to get him to walk a little tomorrow.

He has somehow developed an allergy to Morphine so he is limited to what he can take for pain. Luckily he is not hurting as badly as he was. He was actually able to go all night last night without taking anything for pain. He gets a little better in all areas every day.

Slowly But Surely

Donald's kidney's are still improving slowly. We are averaging about a tenth of a point drop in his numbers each day. He only has .7 to go. It won't be long now before they can start Chemo. His chest looks great today. His nerves are still getting the best of him and he was a little nauseated this morning but he is doing good now. I made him get in the wheelchair and took him for a short trip down the hall and then Bro. Carl came by for a visit so that helped. I plan to get him out of the room for a little while today and maybe go downstairs. He hasn't really left the room since we came in on the 25th of April. Praying he can keep his spirits up.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Panic Sets In

Donald's morning didn't start out very good. He woke up around 4:30 and started thinking about everything. He quickly became overwhelmed and began to panic. He said it felt has though someone was pushing on his chest and he couldn't breath. The nurse checked all of his vitals, did an EKG and put him on oxygen. His heart rate and blood pressure were the only things elevated. They finally were able to calm him down and he was doing okay by the time I made it to the hospital. Patricia joked that he was acting out because I went home for the night. LOL!!! He was still a little shaken when I arrived this morning but he has got much better as the day went on. He got out of bed and sat in the chair for several hours today and also got in the shower the evening. He was finally able to eat some soup tonight and has held it down which is great because he hasn't been able to eat the past couple of days due the nausea. His kidneys are still improving and we are nearing the Chemo start date. His chest is continuing to improve as well and they would like to see it much improved before starting Chemo because it's going to wipe out his immune system again and he really needs that to help fight off this infection. Praying for healing and thanking the Lord for each day he gives us to spend with Donald. For it is by his Gods grace alone that he is doing so well and able to stay strong and continue to get better with each passing day.

Blessings by Laura Story

This is a beautiful song! So very true!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Good report!

The doctor came in this morning and said Donald's chest is looking good and his kidneys are much better. His platelet count is hanging in at 53 and everything else is about the same. They took him off of one of his antibiotics today so he is only taking 2 now. He is still a little nauseated but trying to eat a little at a time. We are hoping that by eliminating one of the antibiotics the nausea will subside. He has been a little down today and wants to go home so bad. If all continues to go well he will start Chemo this week sometime. According to the doctor we have a small window to start Chemo because the leukemia just gets worse each day we wait but we want to make sure he is healthy enough to withstand the treatment. He is pretty weak right now and his blood pressure is still running high at times. Praying the Lord continues to watch over him and keep him strong.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Test Results

Donald's cultures came back from the infection in his chest and it's MRSA. He is on contact isolation now so if anyone comes to visit you have to wear gloves and a gown. He will have to be put on contact isolation every time he comes to the hospital for the next 2 years. The good news is they know what kind of infection it is and how to treat it. He will be on antibiotics for a few more weeks and he should be good to go. They are still waiting on his kidney function to improve and also for the incision from surgery to heal before they start any Chemo. We are looking at having to stay in the hospital until the end of June, at minimum.

It has been a rough day for Donald. His blood pressure has been elevated and he got a migraine this morning which caused him to get sick. The doctor said his blood pressure is probably a result of the sedation during surgery but they were going to keep an eye on it. They gave him some pain medicine and anti-nausea medication which has help a good bit but he is still feeling a little sick and has a mild headache.

We are just taking everything one day at a time. Praying the Lord continues to give him strength and heal his body.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Getting Better Everyday

Donald is still pretty sore from the surgery but he has been getting out of the bed some today. I was able to get him to sit up in the chair for about 15 minutes. He has been a little nauseated from all of these medications but its tolerable with Phenergan. His chest is healing beautifully and looks so much better. His kidney's are still getting better each day. It's slow going but he is hanging in there.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Pain, Pain Go Away!!!

Donald's pain is finally manageable. We were up for most of the night but he was finally able to get some rest about 3 this morning. He has been sleeping for most of the morning. His chest still hurts but the pain medication is keeping it at a tolerable level. We are hoping they will be in soon to remove the ace bandage and relieve the pressure from his chest. The doctor took a peak this morning and said the redness has gone down a good bit. Praise the Lord. I was able to get him to eat a little breakfast this morning which is good because he didn't eat anything yesterday. His kidney's are still getting better. He is just a few digits away from having full kidney function again. Donald is having to overcome a lot this time but God has been with him every step of the way. It's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel but with each passing day and each good report there is a flicker in the distance. He is going to pull through and this will just be one more thing he has made it through. Another inspirational story to tell others. We just have to keep our eyes on God and trust in him.

We have had some people asking about the address to send mail and get well wishes to Donald. You can send them to the hospital address and put his home address on the back of the card. He just can't have any live plants. The address's are as follows:

UMMC
Donald Fitzgerald Room #551
2500 North State Street
Jackson, MS 39216

Home address
746 S. Springlake Circle
Terry, MS 39170

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Pain

Donald woke up around 2pm and was in a lot of pain. His pain got progressively worse over the course of the evening. We were finally able to get the on call doctor to prescribe something a little stronger for pain about 7:30pm. The first dose of pain medicine didn't even take the edge off but they increased the dosage around 9pm and after about 15 minutes he was able to relax and is now sleeping soundly again. The doctor said he shouldn't be in much pain because it was a minor surgery but I explained to the doctor that the infected area was already tender to the touch before surgery. So if you take a very tender spot on a very tender area and cut it open, clean it out with a "pressure washer", put in a drainage tube and then wrap the area tightly with an ace bandage........what do you get???? PAIN, lots and lots of PAIN. It took the doctor seeing him in tears to convey the message. I am so thankful they finally were able to give him something to help with his pain that actually works. Praying he is able to sleep through the night.

Surgery Update

Donald is out of surgery and back in his room. Everything went well and he is resting now. They have a drainage tube in for continue draining any remaining infection and they have wrapped his chest with an ace bandage to squeeze any remaining fluid out of the infected area. He should feel much better tomorrow after they remove the bandage. He has some discomfort from the surgery but he is still able to rest. Hopefully he will sleep most of the day, he needs it.

His kidney function is slowly improving each day. He should have normal kidney function by the end of the week if all goes well and I am optimistic that it will. :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Surgery it is!!!!

Okay, so the doctor came in and said there is definitely infection in his chest that needs to be drained. We just spoke with the Surgeon and they are going to get him in the OR tomorrow morning. He can't eat or drink anything after midnight. They could attempt to do the surgery at bedside but it would be very uncomfortable and they might night get all of the infection if they do it that way. Since they are taking him to the OR they can put him to sleep and he should have minimal discomfort. I am hopeful he will feel much better once they relieve the pressure in his chest. His kidney function has improved some so the doctor feels they are on the mend.

I had a talk with the nurse last night and was able to eliminate some of the interruptions throughout the night so Donald was able to sleep a little more than usual. He is still tired and is resting now. He is a little anxious about having surgery tomorrow but they are going to give him something for anxiety before he goes down for surgery to take the edge off. Overall, he is doing okay. He is ready to be healthy again and wants to go home. Praying for healing and peace of mind as we continue on this journey. 

Monday, May 9, 2011

What's the verdict?

So, we are waiting on the doctor to tell us what the CT scan says. To cut or not to cut.........

Another Test

The doctor just came in and said they want to do another CT Scan of Donald's chest to make sure there are no abscesses. If there are any then they will have to go in and drain them before his chest will heal. In a way it would be good for them to find an abscess so that the cellulitis would heal and he could get off of these antibiotics. On the other hand, he is not excited about getting cut on in order to drain the abscess. His kidney's are still about the same but that is good. The doctor said they usually plateau for a couple of days and then begin to improve. They are going to wait another day or 2 and see if the kidney function will return to normal before they start chemo. Praying Donald can rest some before they start his chemo treatments.

Insulted

Okay, so basically the doctors said they insulted Donald's kidneys by giving him too much vancomycin. His kidneys got mad and said nope, not gonna do ANYMORE. They decreased one of his antibiotics and took him completely off the vanc. His urine output is good but as of yesterday there was no change in his kidney levels. They drew blood again this morning so we will see if his kidney function has improved. The kidney doctor just came in and said that he believes his kidneys should make a full recovery and this is not uncommon for hospitalized patients. That is code for "we messed up and are going to blame it on being in the hospital". HA! I feel confident his kidney function is on on the mend. We are still waiting to see if he will start Chemo today and if so, which protocol. He has not slept well over the past few days and is exhausted. I wish there was some way for him to sleep for a full 8 hours. He would feel so much better. They are still giving him IV fluids and he had 2 units of blood yesterday. He is trying to sleep now but the staff keeps coming in and waking him. I wish they would all get together and come in at the same time instead of every 30 minutes. I guess you can't always get what you want but it doesn't hurt to try. :) Continuing to pray for healing and a full recovery.
 

Friday, May 6, 2011

What a day!

So, we started the day off with and EKG followed by a bone marrow aspiration. Donald's labs came back showing his kidneys are not functioning as good as they should so he had to get an ultrasound of his bladder and kidneys to rule out kidney stone, etc...They have called off his Chemotherapy until they get his kidney function back to normal. I received a call from one of his doctors letting me know they think the reason for the low kidney function is one of his antibiotics. It is supposed to be at about 17 to be therapeutic and it is at 79 which is extremely high. The doctor is hopeful everything will be okay and he should be able to start Chemo on Monday. Donald has decided to go with the research trial chemo protocol and he has to have normal kidney function before he can begin treatment. They came in about 30 minutes ago and did an echo of his heart to make sure his heart can still withstand more chemotherapy. They also drew 6 cultures because he has started running a fever and they need to know what is causing it. Donald was not happy because he had to be stuck again for 2 of the cultures and of course they didn't get it on the first try. He is still waiting for them to take him down to get an X-Ray of his chest as a pre-chemo test. Hopefully this will be the last test they have to do today. Donald is extremely tired and just wants to rest. It has been a very long day. I know I say this a lot but please continue to pray.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

God is in control!

Donald has not had a very good day today. His nerves are starting to get the best of him. He was feeling nauseated earlier but took some medication and is now resting. He is worried about the treatment and fears the worst. I told him God is in control and will get him through this. I can't blame him for being worried and I would be lying if I said I wasn't scared. I have my moments but I just turn my eyes to God and know everything is going to be okay. No matter what happens, it will all be okay. God is going to take care of him. Worrying doesn't do any good. Satan wants us to be fearful but God tells us we have nothing to fear. I am so blessed to be a child of God because I don't think I could handle this if I didn't have a relationship with the Lord. He is my Rock and he helps me to stay strong for Donald. I know Satan uses times like these to push us away from God but I find comfort in the Lord and it only draws me closer to him. I pray Donald can keep his strength up and turn to God when he has fear and doubt. It is difficult for him at this time but there are better days ahead. He has a lot to live for and I know he can pull through. He hasn't come this far to throw in the towel.

Please continue to pray for Donald. He really needs your prayers now more than ever.