Susan and I arrived at the cancer center bracing for the worst. I had been attempting to monitor my weight throughout the week and kept seeing a loss each time I mounted the scales. I finally became so discouraged that I gave up trying to keep a log of my weight fluctuations. I had been eating well, keeping up on my fluids and even exercising, but seemingly all to no avail. Well, when I mounted the scales at the cancer center, Susan and I were utterly dumbfounded to discover that somehow I'd managed to gain one pound! Both of us fully expected a three to four pound loss, but the scales indicated otherwise! I don't know where that pound came from but God be praised for His blessings! Susan and I embraced each other in tears of joy and supreme relief while Heather, the check-in nurse, watched us with a tender empathy. And this was just the beginning of our unexpected surprises this day.
We discovered in our consult with our naturopath, Dr. Paul Reilly, that a CEA blood draw had been taken in April, but we'd never been told the results. The CEA test monitors tumor activity by picking up the antigens they give off when they're active. The previous CEA test was 17, but the April reading was 10.8, indicating that the chemo is doing its job! Again, Susan and I just looked at each other with tears of joy and thanksgiving for this second blessing. Then my blood work for today came back indicating that the white blood count is up and the hematocrit is a strong 36.4 (one of my highest hematocrit readings of recent days!). The other red counts looked improved as well. This meant I could take the full range of meds scheduled for me today. Additionally, I received a shot of a med called Sandostatin, an anti diarrheal medicine administered in the hip with a needle that looks like something a veternarian might use on a horse or cow! I'm still feeling the pain, but the good news is I get this shot only once a month and it is supposed to work like cement. If we can get further control of the diarrhea, then weight gain will be easier. Also, Dr. Reilly said my lack of sodium is keeping me from retaining fluids, so we're working to up my sodium intake. Unlike most men my age, I'm to thoroughly salt my foods.
As you can tell, we are very encouraged after two weeks of precipitous weight loss. God has tested our faith thoroughly in these recent days, but the trial of faith only makes the ultimate answers all the more blessed. I am glad God kept us from learning the result of the April CEA draw, because it made the revelation all the more encouraging. The good news came when we needed it the most! This is the way of God's kingdom. Delayed blessings are always the best!
Again, thank you for your prayers and expressions of love to us in these hard times. To God Alone the Glory!