Monday, May 16, 2011

Chemo and a Sunburn

If you’ve read my Ranch Boss tab, you know by now that Keith was diagnosed with Wegener’s Granulomatosis, a rare form of vasculitis, in March.  This past Thursday, we spent the day at Swedish Hospital in Seattle for his first outpatient chemotherapy infusion. 

There are 2 Bible verses that have become my personal “theme” verses since Keith was first admitted to the hospital in March.  The first is 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, a verse I taught our 3 boys on the way home from the hospital one night.  “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”  When people hear the word chemo, they cringe.  I used to do that.  But our new experience has led me to a completely different thought: how about giving thanks for chemo?  Right now, it is an essential component in the road to wellness for Keith.  Why not give thanks for it?  Thanks for the access to awesome medical care… thanks for knowledgeable doctors… and thanks for the hope that comes with  treatment, including chemo.  There couldn’t be a better time to apply this verse… to be joyful, pray, and give thanks…in each circumstance that comes our way!

The second verse is Hebrews 12:1: “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”  I wrote this on the chalkboards in each of Keith’s hospital rooms.  I loved that every doctor, nurse, and visitor would see that verse when they came to see Keith!  That verse sticks with me because I like to run.  Which leads me to the sunburn part…

I bring my running clothes everywhere I go these days, especially on trips to the doctor or hospital, because you just never can tell when there will be a bit of extra time!  The down side is that the trunk of the car pretty much smells like a yucky locker room.  The sun was out and Keith wanted to take a nap during his infusion, so off I ran.  An hour and a half later, I came back, exhausted and sporting a dandy sunburn.  By the time chemo was over, I was the one limping to the car…it seemed a little ironic to me that, as we left the hospital, I was in worse shape than the patient! 

Chemo had more side effects on Keith this time than his first round last month did.  The following day was rough on him, but we know it’s one step closer to wellness, and there’s plenty to be thankful for in that! 

And I’ve thrown some sunscreen into the trunk of the car; now at least it smells like a locker room in the Bahamas!

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