Update #11 (November 8, 2019)

Chemo Round #2

I had my second round of chemo here in Mindemoya last Friday (November 1).  It was so nice to only have to drive 2 mins down the road … not 2 hours to Sudbury!  Hadassah came along and sat with me for part of the infusion and Dan came for the last part.  All up, I have to be at the hospital for about 4 to 4½ hours.

I seemed to be hit a little harder this time with side effects and different symptoms to the first round.  I was very sensitive to cold things in my mouth (even room temperature water hurt my throat – I had to take small sips of water).  My hands were also very sensitive to cold and I had tingling in my fingers, especially when I went for a walk outside in the cold air.  I also experienced some nausea, which wasn’t pleasant.  Thankfully the symptoms only lasted about 4 days and got less and less as the days went by.  I am still more tired than usual, but apart from that I am starting to feel more normal again.

I continue to have mouth sores and quite a sore tongue, especially when I eat.  I had an appointment with the oncology dentist this week and she said my mouth issues are still as a result of the radiation.  The side effects can last up to 12 weeks after you finish radiation.  The dentist also explained that cells in your mouth are continually being replaced every 5 days, but because your tongue is a muscle, it takes longer to recover.  Hopefully there is a light at the end of the tunnel though. ?

It can be hard to be positive on the low days and I find my mind goes to places it shouldn’t.  I know on days like this, I have to remember to rely on God to pull me through these “valleys” and to be thankful and appreciate the “good” days.  Our God is very merciful and will bear us up through the dark days.

 

Some Positive News

I had another CT scan on October 23 (the first one was mid August).  The oncologist requested this CT scan more as a benchmark or baseline for things going forward … to see how the chemo is working on the cancer.

The oncologist seemed quite surprised when she was reading the report to me and stating that many of my enlarged lymph nodes had already reduced in size … some by half!  This was quite unexpected, especially since I had only had one round of chemo by the time of the second CT scan.  Thanks be to God!  It’s these positive things along this journey that encourage us.  Thank you everyone for your prayers.

 

First Snow

The “white stuff” has arrived on Manitoulin! ☹  Our boys were SO excited when it first snowed.  Micah started the tradition of running out on the deck with bare feet on the first snow of the season … and even Grandma Wilton joined the tradition this year!  The boys even got to have their first snow day on November 1.  For those Aussies reading this who have no idea about our harsh Canadian winters … a snow day is when the school buses are cancelled.  Schools are still open, but because the majority of children are bussed to school (except those who live within walking distance, like we do) they stay home for the day.  I usually just keep the kids home on snow days as not much work is done at school.

Another Thank You

We are so thankful for the many cards, packages, flowers, meals and food items that people are still sending along.  It really has been overwhelming … the love and support shown to us by our ecclesial family and the local community here on Manitoulin.

I said to Dan that I feel like I need to write and say thank you to everyone who has shown kindness to us … but I know that’s not possible right now!  So to all those reading this update who have helped us in some way, a BIG THANK YOU to you all.  These acts of kindness really brighten our day.  The boys have especially been happy for the packages they have received too!  Thank you also for the many prayers being offered to our Heavenly Father.

 

Wait on the Lord: be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart:
wait, I say, on the Lord.
Psalm 27v14