My Christmas was not at all what I had expected. I was up up all Christmas Eve night with pain and some bleeding. I still managed to get in a quick Christmas snuggle with my three kids and continue our tradition.
Christmas morning I met a friend who was able to test my urine and I had a raging infection. We spent the morning on the phone with the oncologist on call. He checked for an antibiotic that I could take, then we threw the kids in the car in their pajamas and drive forty five minutes away to get the medication.
Then, we got news a stomach bug hit my sisters house, where we were supposed to go. I felt horrible for her and her husband. They had been preparing for days to make it a special Christmas. Instead, we needed up hosting and had a small Christmas here with my mom and dad, my sisters mother in law, au pair from Germany and two of my nieces. It needed up being lovely and calm and peaceful.
The next day I went to the hospital for the MRI. What a way to spend the day after Christmas.
On the way to the hospital I told rob, dad, paula, and sister jill that I thought my doctor would admit me. The pain in the liver was scary, it hurt to bend, and I had the doctors voice from Boston in my head…”Your liver may function now, but it can go very quickly.” Cried on the way in and rob held my hand.
At least I made through Christmas.
That’s how the mind works.
Which is why people with stage four are emotionally exhausted and mentally all…of…the…time.
I prayed to God and He showed up.
My technician Wayne came for me immediately and we picked up our conversation where we left off six weeks ago. The MRI was about 45 minutes, and I listened to Christmas music among the banging and whizzing and beeping. The contrast burned as it went in at the end and I did my best to not cry and move in the tube.
When I finished I had to go get another needlestick for labwork. We had kept the IV in from the MRI hoping to avoid another needle, but couldn’t use it. The tech was new but kind, and as I became overwhelmed and cried because they didn’t have a vein finder, she cried too. And got it in one stick.
Then we got news that my doctor got my email and ordered all of the injections, saving me a trip tomorrow back to the hospital. So off I went to pull down my pants and bend over and two nurses slowly inject the fassy in the assy. I got two warm packs, sat down, pulled my pants low again and got the zolodex. My belly skin gets pinched, the needle is inserted, the trigger gets pulled and coils release a pellet into my stomach. It hurts like hell.
Then the blood tech realized she missed a test, but the IV was still in, and one of my chemo nurses was able to get blood from it. Thank you Jesus.
I was handed a cup and off I went to give another specimen.
Then we left.
I hadnt eaten so we went to the cheesecake factory for breakfast. I had eggs and spinach and mushrooms. When I went to do the mouthwash in the bathroom, I got sick. Panic set in again, with the mind saying, “vomiting is next with liver failure after pain….”
Paula sent me a picture of an angel, and we both gasped. It looks like the other angel pictures I have. I believe in angels around me. It is comforting.
Rob had gotten the car, and when I got in and told him I had gotten sick, he went right into Rob mode. Reminded me the labwork shows liver function is fine, get the Boston doctor out of my head. I think I got sick because of stress and pain. My body just released everything, and I was empty for Snuffleuffugus.
Snuffy called me and asked me to come to his apartment to get him, as his computer and printer are broken as could we bring him to get it fixed.
We pulled up and rob helped him carry his things to the car. I love Snuffy. We went to the diner and they all know him, as he just walks to a table and sets up shop. We got right to business and he took my pulse the traditional Chinese medicine way. He closed his eyes and said my stamina was low. Imagine if it was high?
He looked at my tongue, skin, eyes, breathing, voice, urged me to keep drinking water, and made me eat. I had lentil soup.
He looked over everything. One thing he pointed out was a specific number from the original biopsy that was high, and how it is different on the liver. It’s a question to ask doctor now. He also said he wasn’t worried the pain now is from liver failure. He thinks his tea and the medicine are causing the liver pain. I’ll go with healing over failure any day.
We discussed how he helps many of my friends. In the cancer world, there are people now making a living off of blogging and documenting their lives, writing books. I’m talking thousand of followers. Two of them use him, and he said he doesn’t take many patients anymore, because they all weigh so heavy on his heart. I messaged the two “famous” women to let them know I met him and he loves them. We have a secret snuffy society. Some of you reading know him, and love him too.
He said it’s better there are many small mets instead of a few big tumors. It’s easier to treat. He will add things to ease anxiety and help me sleep, and strengthen stamina. He said my chi is strong. When the organ is strong, cancer won’t spread. That’s the universal truth. I was showing him a picture of my children when paula texted me one word…”amen”.
He saw that and asked what it meant. I told him I had updated her, and that many of my friend pray for me.
That’s when it happened.
He looked at me and told me his wife is a violin teacher, and one time played in Portugal… for the celebration of Fatima.
I gasped and looked at rob and started to cry. He told us his wife saw the Virgin Mary and there was a picture of her that was taken and sent to the bishop. He verified it.
Now his wife prays to Mary three times a day… and is a Buddhist. He told me it is ok to pray to Mary too, she will hear me. Even God needed Mary to complete his work of sending Jesus down.
We stayed for two hours because we could tell he didn’t want to leave. He is lonely, and all of his family is in Hong Kong. He misses them deeply. We drove to staples and rob and I carried in his computer. The girl that worked there initially was aggravated with him, as he is hard to understand due to a stroke and his accent. I wanted to say “Dont you know who he is? He is saving lives! Be gentle!”
He walked away for a minute, and she turned to us and asked how she could help us. We both looked at her and said, “We are with him. He is our friend and we are making sure everything is ok.”
Her demeanor instantly changed toward snuff and became kind and gentle. Amen.
Rob said he wanted to just buy him a new computer and printer. Snuffy doesn’t charge much at all considering what I am paying others. He is a humble man, and lives a very modest life. This is his passion and gift. A true healer.
As we left him, he told me again he has confidence I will be ok. It will be a long journey, always keep bags packed, and it will be bumpy. Keep praying and work with him. Then he hugged me. I said over and over in his ear how I loved him. He said goodbye to rob and gave him a thumbs up.
Then he shuffled away.
We drove home mostly silent.
It had been a day.
Then my friend paula texted me how they discovered carbon monoxide in her home and the fireman said she was almost the story you hear about on the news . She had been falling asleep earlier and her dogs had been bothering her for days. They knew. Thank you God for saving Paula. All of you need to check your CO2 detectors for the new year.
So here I am today.
Sore, exhausted yet can’t sleep, and got an email to start the chemo again.
I plan on mostly staying home unless I run out for something. Yesterday was a hell of a day.
Today will be a healing day.
In Jesus’s name, amen.