Pray for Erin

Life in the Gray May 31, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — erin @ 10:16 am

So, I had a bit of a heart to heart with my doctor Thursday at chemo. One question I get a lot is something along the lines of “How many rounds of this chemo will you have to do?” My short answer is “I don’t know” my longer answer is “We’ll have a better idea once we do a CT scan in a month and see how effective the chemo actually is.” I didn’t know if the long answer was true, it was just an educated guess. So I decided I should ask my doc about it.

The conversation evolved into a general discussion about the long-term goals of my treatment. What I think my doctor has been telling me all along and that I’m finally hearing is that they don’t necessarily expect this treatment to put me back into remission. She didn’t actually use the word “palliative” but that’s the impression I got. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean I won’t go back into remission, it’s just that the minimum they’re hoping for is to stop progression of the disease, if they can reverse it that’s great, but they’ll be happy to just stop the tumor from continuing to grow.

Wow. That’s a hard pill to swallow. They aren’t actually trying to cure me, just help me to comfortably live as long as possible. When I think of cancer it’s hard not to think of things in very black and white terms. Will I live or die? Will this cure me or not? It’s hard to find myself in the gray area where there is no certainty or even odds to help me set some sort of expectation.

Then I think of all the other people who live in the gray; people with chronic diseases, disabilities or life affecting injuries. They find a new normal. My quality of life doesn’t have to change, maybe just my expectations for my life.

That’s still hard though. And it’s hard not to feel like the doctors are in some way giving up on me. I know they’re treating me in the best way they know how, but I want that to mean we try again for a CURE. I know my body went through a lot the first time we did this, and I know that makes drastic measures this time around even more risky, but I don’t want to give up. Then again maybe I shouldn’t think of this course of treatment as giving up. I don’t know what to think.

I like to be able to end my train of thought in some sort of resolution, but I haven’t come to one yet. This is still an active struggle for me and I don’t know what to think or how to feel about it all.

In the meantime though, I do have a specific prayer request I’d like to mention. Throughout this treatment I have struggled with anemia (low hemoglobin). I’ve tried to be conscious of this and make good diet choices to help my body, but it just keeps dropping. Even during my week off I didn’t see any recovery in those numbers. So if you could all be praying that my body would recover in this area so that they can continue with the chemo I would really appreciate it. Thanks so much everyone, for the prayers and listening to my ramblings, even when they don’t come to a proper conclusion.

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7 Responses to “Life in the Gray”

  1. Clara Vannoy Says:

    Erin, You will definitely be in my prayers, as you continue your treatment. I will pray for God to strengthen your body so chemo can continue & for God to miraculously work in your body & give the doctors wisdom & ideas of how to best help you. I appreciate you blogs, the information you share, & for being open about your feelings. It amazes me when I read your blogs & the courage you have as you face reality & have to deal with life & death situations. I can’t imagine having to deal with feeling physically weak & the emotions that come with it, yet you encourage me when I read your thoughts & the struggles you go through. Continue on, relying on God to support you & use you as you live life each day. None of us know how many days we have left on earth & often take life for granted but those of you facing life threatening illnesses seem to live a fuller life b/c you are faced with the possibility of a shorter life. I hope my words don’t upset you but let you know that you cause me to think & take action. I am moved by you & your ability to write in a way that touches the hearts of myself and others. When my daughter Krista was recovering from her c-section she mentioned how hard that was for her, yet it was nothing compared to what you are dealing with. Your blogs are being used to make a difference in many people. You express yourself well and with meaning, that stirs our soul, causing us to seek God and know Him.

    Love,
    Clara

  2. Michele Ely-Haralson Says:

    My Dad had the same problem. A friend suggested he try Vital Yes in the capsule form. He took 6 a day two with each meal. After 8 days he never had to get blood transfusions or platelets again.

  3. Denise Pearson Says:

    Thank you for honestly sharing your thoughts, Erin. You continue to amaze me. I think we all wish and pray that you be cured of cancer (and appreciate the concrete hemoglobin prayer request). I appreciate your black & white vs gray imagery and yet sit here on this absolutely gorgeous day and the word colorful blows those other colors away. I guess the challenge for us all,whatever our situation, is to live a vibrant life here in God’s earthly kingdom. Continuing to pray that your earthly life be healthy and long, that the unknown/gray not ruin today, and that you and all those who love you continue to find strength in God’s abundant love.

  4. Denise Pearson Says:

    PS Erin — please don’t think I’m minimizing how difficult the non-black and white parts of life are. I always struggle with the in-between times of not knowing, even in things that aren’t a big deal! Yours is a big deal!

  5. Laurie button Says:

    Prayers and ❤

  6. Mary Kuhn Says:

    Try to keep looking forward and love, really love every moment
    and your friends and family that are also going through this with you


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