Tuesday, May 12, 2009

God Be Praised!

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!


Carolyn Young said...

O give thanks unto the Lord for HE IS GOOD! God be Praised!

Dina said...


Bryan Family said...

We are so "tickled" by the good news! We are reminded of the verse to "walk by faith and not by sight" - The Lord is awesome (but you already know that don't you!)
We will continue to intercede for you and your family. Thank you for keeping us updated on your blog. Much love to the family!

fishngking said...


He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength when the labors increase;
To added affliction He addeth His mercy,
To multiplied trials, His multiplied peace.

When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed 'ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources,
Our Father's full giving is only begun.

His love has no limit, His grace has no measure, His power has no boundary known unto men; For out of His infinite riches in Jesus, He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again!
~Annie Johnson Flint

Praising God for His Goodness! Brenda

Cousin Jim said...

Thanks be to God says it all.

Dean and Debbie Criss said...

Dear Bryan and Susan,
We praise God with you for this wonderful news!
The Criss family

Holston Family said...

Pastor Bryan and Susan,

This is so encouraging! One pound at a time! This reminds me of a children's song that goes, "Never stare up the stairs, just step up the steps, little by little, inch by inch!"
Thank you so much for always keeping us informed! We love your family a bunch!

~Heather, for the Holston Family

Jeannie said...

We are praising God for this good report! We will continue to pray.
Robert and Jeannie

Stephen Bittner said...

God be praised - what an encouragement.