Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Day 33...

Some great things have happened today I wanted to share.  The first was that the very first Neurosurgeon that I saw right after being diagnosed called the house this morning to see how I was doing.  Well I was not home but he took the time to answer questions that Kara had that we had not asked anyone yet or was unsure of the answer.  He spent 30 minutes talking to her knowing that we will probably not be coming back to see him.  So he actually was concerned with us enough to listen to Kara and answer her questions.  He also asked that we have our records copied and sent to him as well so he could keep up with me, and offer help if he finds something that could help me.  How awesome is that?? Then Kara went and picked up the boys from school and stopped by Cracker Barrel to look for something.  While she was there she ran into an old friend from a previous church and talked to her a few minutes.  After she was caught up on what has been going on with us, she mentioned that she had a customer that had a brain tumor that was discovered over 5 years ago that is still in her but they go in ever so often when it grows and shrink it enough to not affect her. These two things today came at the right time when Kara needed it.  She has been worried over the last week because things were not progressing how she felt it needed to.  This information really helped put her at ease.
   As far as the latest on my next step, I go Friday for my 3rd MRI and then next Thursday I go back to Duke to the Brain Tumor Center for my initial consultation with an Oncologist. Please pray that they will have a solid treatment plan that will be the best for me.  I appreciate everything that people have done for me and my family,  
prayers, food, spending time with us, watching the kids for us and getting them to school, all of this and more is very appreciated.  Thank you!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Day 32....

Well I know it has been a while since I have posted anything new.  And today is not much of an exception.  The Neurosurgeon’s office did call me yesterday to let me know that they do not feel they should try operating yet.  Don’t know if that means it is truly inoperable or if they don’t feel the risk is worth the amount that they can remove.  Also, the first doctor’s office from Duke called me to let me know that they have the information back from my Biopsy and they will be discussing with the doctor on when to bring me in there.  Not sure yet if it will be soon or if they will wait.  I should hear back from them this afternoon about that. 
            Just a thought that I have been thinking on quite a bit lately.  Why should I expect God to heal me above anyone else in the world?  I don’t feel I have ever felt like I was better than another person by no means, but I have had several people say that it shouldn’t have happened to me.  Well, why should it not?  Yes I am a Christian and try to follow the Bible as best I can, but that doesn’t put me in the short line to recovery.  In God’s eyes we are all equal.  This means I am equal to the guy that abuses his body with drugs, or the prostitute who sells her body.  He made us all equal, and loves each of us equally…period.  The better treatment you get from being a Christian is not in this life….we actually should expect worse.  The Devil hates a strong Christian and will try anything he can to screw them up.  Nothing is better for his cause than a weak Christian.  I should know, I have been there for a long time.  I have never talked to people I know that are not Christians because I didn’t want them to not like me.  In the past week I have felt compelled to speak with a few of those people…definitely not my normal self.  I didn’t preach at them, I just did as I should have done in the past…listen to them and then tell my story.  That can be all it takes.  In this world no one wants to take the time to listen to each other, they are too busy with life to sit down and just talk.  Everyone knows someone that they should just sit and talk with, to find out how they are and what is weighing them down.  Once you start talking about those things then inviting them to church or even possibly praying with them is not so hard.  (It is so funny that I of all people am giving lessons on “witnessing” something that I had not done in decades)  So if there is anything to take from this it would be to sit down with a friend or co-worker that is unchurched and listen…you may not be able to take it any further the first time, so do it again and again until their heart is receptive, you will know, and then just pray with them or invite them to your church.  The Lord will give you the words to say, but you have to take the first step.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Day 27....extra

I probably should not post this but for some reason I feel like I should.  I finally got a disc that I can view.  It is strange to look at knowing it is in my head.  Kara said to explain that the tumor is on the Right side but it is reversed in the picture for some reason.  It is the light colored area

Day 27....

Well, I thought I would I would just update you on the news I have gotten this week….OK I am done.  I have not heard back yet from the Doctor this week as of Thursday at lunch.  I have had many people ask why I haven’t updated my blog yet.  It has actually been a busy week with Ean’s 13th birthday and work.  Hopefully, I will hear something this afternoon or tomorrow so I will know the next step in my journey.  Thank you all so much for praying for me and getting your friends to pray for me.  God is still working hard and has really changed my view on life in these last few weeks.  The things that used to be important are not.  With our pastor’s sermon on Sunday, he spoke of the things that we try to achieve so that we will be happy.  A better car….a better spouse….a better house…yet it is all a carrot hung out in front of us that we will never reach, because when we get it the carrot moves back out in front of us again and the chase starts over again.  Be content with what you have!  Life is too short to be chasing irrelevant things.   

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Day 23...

Really enjoyed church this morning and it was kind of funny listening to the sermon.  The sermon was basically talking about my life up until recently.  Our pastor stated that if you are doing good and are content with life then listen up and he will tell you how to fix that.  Well I have spent most of my life trying to find the next "fix" to make my life better.  A better job...a different job...a different state....a better car...more money...and the list goes on.  As I listened today I chuckled to myself on one occasion because the things he listed are things that I already had tried over and over.  But I can say honestly right now I am the most content with my life than I have ever been.  It took a brain tumor for me to realize what is important and lasting.  I am honestly happy now.  Yes that sounds completely backwards but I am.  The Lord has taken all the crap that filled my life and showed me how meaningless it really was and all I have left is what I need.  Along with removing all the useless things, he has cleared my mind as well.  There are so many songs, verses, etc. that I have heard many times that now say something totally different to me...kind of like someone put glasses on me the first time after being without them for years.  It just makes it clear.  I didn't start this blog to say "look at how great I am" because I am not.  I started this because in the very beginning of this journey I knew that God has a story that He wants to tell through me.  He didn't tell me through a burning bush or an angel from the sky, I just knew the night I first found out I had the tumor.  I pray that I never hinder this story and that I will only point out that God is in charge, whether we like it or not.  We can either listen to Him and follow him and be content in life, or fight it all the way and be misreable...either way it is our choice.  I got lucky on Feb 24, 2012 by being given a point in life where I can either follow or fight...I chose to follow.  Don't wait for that point in your life.  Make the choice now.  You will have a much more enjoyable life when you quit fighting between your will and God's...God's is much better especially because he knows us better than we know ourselves. 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Day 22....

Well sorry that I didn't finish yesterday, so much went on yesterday and this morning (Good things, that is)  So here it goes.
We checked in at 3:00 on Thursday at Duke.  It took 2 1/2 hours to check in. This included blood work and everything.  Everyone was so nice that we talked to at each point of the check in.  I was very impressed, as I never felt like one of the herd of cattle that I have felt in the past at a hospital.  They told me at the end that I had a room already so I didn't have to hurry to the main hospital, we could go eat dinner and then go back.  So we went to Costco and ate yogurt for dinner and walked around for a while.  So we went back to the hospital about 1 1/2 hours later and checked in the hospital.  Everyone along the way there too was very helpful and didn't act like we were bothering them.  I was very pleased.  After we had been there a little while, they took me to the MRI area to get my MRI done with the dots on my head that give them coordinates to reference for when they drilled into my head in the morning.  (They also outlined each one of them with a permanent marker in case they came off,  I am still trying to get the sharpie off my head)   At each place I had to answer questions and had to tell the symptoms that I had to get me to this place. Each time the people were so intrigued in the symptoms.  I am really surprised that no one has ever had symptoms like me.  (I guess I always try to be different...haha)  They had to start an IV before the MRI so when I got back they hooked me up to an IV and included steroids to help my brain not swell during the operation.  They said to not expect to sleep that night.  They gave me the steroids at 12 and I slept from 12:15 to 5:00 no problem.  (Kara didn't sleep well in her chair)  They came and got me about 5:15 and took me down to the OR waiting area.  The doctor came and saw me and talked to me (He had flew in the night before and drove straight from the airport to the hospital to meet me and talk to me)  then they rolled me back to the OR.  They said that they would  put me out and install  the Mayfield Clamp on my head  then wake me back up.  (I found pictures of it a little while ago and it looks like a giant C-Clamp with 3 point that they screw down tight on your head to hold it into place. )
They woke me back up and started installing the guide for the drill.  Once that was installed the Assistant said he was going to start drilling. As soon as he said drill, my heart rate went up pretty significantly. I told him  "see what you did?"  we laughed a second then he started drilling.  That was one interesting few moments of listening to that drill words can describe that. Once he drilled the hole, the doctor came in and I could see what looked like a skewer that they handed him.  He slid it into the guide and stuck it in my head  3-4 times each time deeper to get a sample.  Again, very strange.  They then had to go out of the room and make sure the samples they got would be good enough for pathology to use to see what kind of tumor it is.  That seemed like 3 days laying there in the Mayfield clamp, my neck starting hurting, and back from laying in that awkward position.  They finally came back and said it was all usable and then they took me out of the clamp.  When they got done unhooking me they took me straight up to my room.  I was in my room by 8:45 AM, and alert.  I felt fine.  Another assistant to the doctor came in and checked on me and asked me questions to make sure I was ok.  Kara finally was able to come see me at around 10:00  as the Doctor wants to speak to the family first before allowing them to come see me.  By the time she got there I had already ate breakfast.  Other than starting to get a headache from where the screws were tightened to my head I felt fine.  So after talking to everyone that was there waiting to see me, Kara and I spent time listening to "Always" which has become our anthem in our life now.  Then we listened to some other songs that had become favorites, one which will be done in church tomorrow.  (You won't relent) I have joked with Kara about getting a Tattoo on and off for several years and last year she said I could get one if I lost 20 lbs.  Well, that didn't work, so the other week she told me I could get one if I still wanted it.  (My dad reads this and will probably try to talk me out of it...sorry dad)  The one thing I never have told her is why I want one.  There is a verse in "You won't relent" that goes like this
"I'll set You as a seal upon my heart
As a seal upon my arm"
I want to to have a seal upon my arm to mark me unmistakably as God's...that is why I want a tattoo.  That is not for everyone but it is what I personally want to do.  Hopefully, I will get a chance to do it. Please don't take this as condoning this for everyone as I know it is not. 
So anyway back to the about 3:00 the doctor came in and told me what he thought the tumor was and he thinks it is a Grade 2 which is what we were told by the first neurosurgeon and I told him that is good news ( The best news would be not having it all)  he looked at me strangely and said..."yes I guess if you are going to have a tumor a grade 2 would be the best one to have"  I don't think anyone has ever said good news and tumor to him in the same sentence.  He said that it is still not a final diagnosis until pathology has looked at it but he said his average is being 85% right.  So we feel good that what he told us is going to be correct. 
We were released to leave about 4:30 and got out about 5:00 and Kara had not ate since Thursday so we drove to Ruby Tuesday and ate dinner.  Can you believe that I had, for all intensive purposes, brain surgery at 7:30 AM and was eating at Ruby Tuesday at 5:30?  What a great day! We then walked around the mall then went to check in the hotel.  We sat there til about 7 then went back to Costco for some more yogurt.  Then we went back to the hotel (I know this is so exciting, right?) and we crashed at 9:00 and slept till about 7:00, we were so tired.  Got  up, ate breakfast and drove home, then took a nap, and then went and got the boys from a friends house.  
God watched over us every inch of the way, he sent so many people to help us and we thank you all.  We actually had more people that wanted to help but we just didn't have enough for everyone to do.  (I am sure we can use use along the way...don't worry)  But, thank each and every one of you that did help this time, we couldn't have done it without you.  We appreciate all the calls, visits, dinner, driving the kids to their destinations, etc. You all are AMAZING!  It is a blessing to have so many people want to help.  
The next step is to get the results back from the Pathology lab and see how to treat the tumor.  So please continue to pray and ask others to pray.  God is already moving...just look at the week I have had and tell me He isn't..and this is just the beginning.  Keep reading my blog and watch as He does the extrodinary, you will be glad you did.

Friday, March 16, 2012

day 21....

Just a quick note.  I got out of the OR at 8:45 and ate breakfast shortly after.  I was awake while they drilled in my head which was interesting to say the least..  I will tell more later...please continue praying for me and my family...God is still good...and He has an amazing plan for my life.

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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Day 19

Well things have been pretty exciting around today.  This morning since it was supposed to be such a gorgeous day, I chose to ride my motorcycle to work.  I got about a mile from the house and was coming up on traffic.  There was a school bus coming toward me in the other lane and it turned it's amber lights on.  When it did this the first of two cars in front of me slammed on brakes, therefor the minivan in front of me did the same..  I was doing about 45 as I was approaching and I hit my brakes.  Well I got down to somewhere around 20 MPH and started skidding.  Now here comes the God thing.  I slammed into the back of that minivan dead center of the vehicle.  Anyone knows that an object in motion tends to want to stay in motion in the same direction.  Well, that is unless God wants something different.  When I hit that van I was thrown off of the motorcycle and went off at about 90 degrees from forward.  (God Intervened)I hit the ditch and rolled I dont know about 5 or six times and popped back up on my feet.  I immediately went to see if the driver of the van was ok.  She was sitting there holding on to the steering wheel looking straight in front of her.  This is conjecture, but I think she was scared to go back and see what happened to me.  Well I asked her if she was OK and she said she was and asked me the same.  We went back to the back of the van and talked and another guy on a Harley stopped and made sure I was OK.  He son helped me get the motorcycle back upright.  We exchanged information and I got the motorcycle started and went home.   I walked in the house and Kara started yelling "Is that you Greg?" and I said yes.  She kept asking me why I was back.  I did not answer until I got in the bedroom and told her I was in a wreck.  SHe got upset for a minute and then said "I knew it!"  I asked her what she ment.  She said when she was dropping the boys off for school something came over her and she felt that something happened to me... kind of strange but that has happened alot lately.  We hugged for a while and I told her that she wasnt going to be able to get rid of me apparently.  I got in the car to head to work and on the way it just hit me so powerfully....God used this to reiterate that He has a plan for my life...a BIG one!  If He did not have a plan for me then He could have just not saved me this morning.  It is obvious that it was else can it be explained that I flew off the motorcycle in the totally opposite direction than I was going and land in a grassy ditch.  When I realized this I was laughing and crying at the same time...God has a perfect plan for me  and a big one at that,  and He has a sense of humor as well.  He used a wreck to remind me that 1) He is in control 2) He has a plan, no matter what I do.
What an Amazing God we serve!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day 16

It has been a great few days.  My youngest  son Grant turned 11 on Friday.  He had a party with his friends on Friday at Lazer tag.  He had a really good time.  Yesterday I got to spend some time with a close friend for lunch just the two of us and then later with both our families. What a great time.  Then today we went to the early service at church...which was such a great time in the Lord.  Then this afternoon, we had a party for Grant (Yes he got two parties) which was so our families could get together to celebrate his birthday with him.  Then, we had family pictures taken for the first time in years.  Finally, we ate dinner with another family  (Thank you so much, it was great, you know who you are) Wow, this isn't like us.  We typically are pretty low keyed and stay to ourselves.  What a wonderful time we had this weekend.  We got to spend time with so many friends and family, and spend time worshiping the Lord.  
     One thing has been bothering Kara and I the last few days and we have discussed this several times. At the end of the day, or just as we were doing things together it felt like.....a normal day.....and we felt bad for that.  We felt like nothing was wrong for hours at a time and we felt bad for doing that.  I really don't like that feeling. I never want to go back to the average day I have had in the past mainly because I don't want to lose site of what has been made important to me in the last two weeks. Even if/when the tumor has been taken out or I have been given a good prognosis, I don't ever want to take one second of my life for granted.  Life is too precious to do that.  I am sure that there will be many more days that are not normal than there will be of "normal " ones but it is still unnerving.  As I go through this journey, maybe this feeling will make more sense, but as of right now, I am not sure what to feel or think about it.  
      Gotta work tomorrow, I hope that I can concentrate more than I have the last couple of weeks on actual work.  So many things run through my mind while I am there, and I still have people that are just now hearing of this journey I am on so they will come by and talk to me about it.  Most people are scared to ask, thinking I don't want to talk about it.  However, it is the exact opposite,  I want to talk to others about it and ask them to pray for me.  I still believe in the plan that God has for me in this and I do want others to witness what happens.   I just want to jump up and down and point at God and yell "Watch this!" to everyone.  I want to talk to everyone I can and tell them this story...not so I can say hey look at me, but to show them how many things God has done already...He is so awesome!

Time to go to bed...but I do want to say thank you for reading this.  I have talked to so many of you that have read my ramblings and you have told me you are praying for me.  It is so humbling to know so many people are praying for Greg  I hope that through my story, God will work to change all of us to get rid of the non-essential and let us as Christians work on the essential parts of our lives, to glorify Him.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Day 14....

     Well today is exactly 2 weeks since I was diagnosed with a Malignant Glioma Brain Tumor.  So much has happened in the last two weeks in my life, it is almost like a light switch has been switched on and I can see clear now.  But through all of the last two weeks one thing has become clear.  God is in control.  I pray daily that I do nothing to get in the way of what God has planned.  That is very hard for me because I always have a timetable that I want to be on.  But, it has become very obvious that this never worked in the past, so I have relinquished everything over to Him.  Just wish I could have done it long ago.
       Well, on a more joyful note, my youngest son Grant is 11 today.  I got the privilege to go to his school and spend his lunch time with him.  He has been pretty giddy all week since his birthday was coming and today was no exception.  He did a birthday “dance” in the parking lot while he was waiting for us to get the cupcakes and his lunch to bring into the lunch room.  He is so cute and has such a great heart.  I pray that life doesn’t try to change him in this respect.  He is so much like me in the fact that he loves to joke and cut up.  I have always liked to tell jokes and make people laugh and he does too. Near the end of lunch all of the kids in the lunch room started singing happy birthday to him.  He loved the attention.  It made me tear up because I was able to be there for that little part of his life…and just a few weeks ago, it wouldn’t have bothered me to not go and have lunch with him. Hmmm…..again God showing me his priorities are always better.  Examine yours.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Day 13....

Well tomorrow it will be two weeks since I was diagnosed, three weeks since I had the first symptom.  A few things have happened since I wrote last.  I think by the course of how things happened God has led me in one direction as far as my treatment.  I received a call on Wednesday from the Neurosurgeon’s office at Duke yesterday afternoon.  They called to say that the Neurosurgeon wants to do the Biopsy on Friday March 16 as this is the earliest he could do it as he is not in town until Thursday night (I believe he goes to other hospitals in the country and performs operations there as well) So I will check in on Thursday to the hospital and they will make sure I am ok to take the surgery, then on Friday I will meet the Doctor the first time right before I get the biopsy done.  So after setting that up, 20 minutes later I get a call from Wake Forest.  They called to tell me that the woman that had my MRI on Monday was sick so the Tumor board did not review my case on Tuesday….so pretty much I was still stuck at the same spot I was last Thursday.  They also said they wanted to schedule a consultation with the Neurosurgeon tomorrow (Friday) this would be just to see him and discuss doing a biopsy, basically what was talked about last Thursday. So it seems they are dragging their feet while Duke has already got me scheduled and ready to go.  Duke has been decisive and direct while Wake has been the opposite…so pardon the pun…it is a no-brainer.
            This week God has pointing out things to me that I have missed all my life.  I will tell you about a couple of things.  One, is that all things in life point to God our one and only.  Think about all of the things that would have had to happen by chance in order for us to be here without a Devine Creator.  I don’t think anyone could logically argue evolution if they actually looked at the big picture.  I really was overwhelmed when I realized this the other day, every living thing was put here to point to the Lord, and we were especially put here to praise him.  We should quit ignoring the obvious and join in and praise the one true God.  Don’t wait till you are tapped on the shoulder like I was.  
 Secondly, one thing that I had long stopped believing was that people care about each other.  There were several times in where friends and others have hurt us and we got to the point where it was easier to a) trust no one b) rely only on each other.  We had decided that people inherently did not care about anyone but themselves.  This past week has changed this for us.  We have people all over the nation, who have never met us, that are praying for us, they actually care for us without ever spending time with us.  It has restored my belief in others that people want to do good, that they want to help others….that they care.  I don’t know why I was compelled to tell this today, and I certainly can’t believe what the Lord has laid on my heart the last week.  I am typing this but it is hard to believe that it is me saying this.  For the longest time I have just “shown up” to church.  Listen to the sermon, enjoy the music then go home without ever being really changed.  I still am far from being one of those people who you admire because of their walk with the Lord.  I still have yet to sit down and read the bible for hours, but I have started spending time with my family every night reading verses that people have sent either me or Kara and then actually talking about it with the family on how that should apply to our lives. But most of all I have spent hours praying to the Lord that His will be done.  I hope that this story never becomes the “Greg Story” I would much rather it be...”Do you remember that guy that had a brain tumor and God worked in his life….”  
Each one of us has a story, I pray that it is never as dramatic as mine, but you should share it with others.  Tell others what God is doing in your life.  You will be surprised how it will affect others.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Day 11...

Well not much has happened as far as progress wise with the Doctors.  I am waiting on two things right would be what they discussed at Wake Forest in the Tumor board today.  They should have gotten my MRI by yesterday and reviewed it today.  I didn't expect to hear from them today really, but would have been nice.  The other thing is an appointment at Duke.  I did talk to them today and they were waiting on the Neurosurgeon to review the information then schedule me an appointment for biopsy.  The person at the office said I should hear from them in the next couple of days. 
    What has been really cool is to hear from others that I am an encouragement to them.  I have had several people today tell me that they have read my blog and have been encouraged.  It really isn't me.  If this were me I ,would not be speaking to people I dont know or standing up in front of several hundred people and speaking...that just doesn't normally come from me.  I am the quiet one that doesn't speak out.  The Lord is definitely using me,  not sure what his plans are, but I am definitely headed down an unknown path.  I just pray that I do what He wants of me.  Kara and I already talked about this the other day and we were saying that maybe on the other side of this we may be doing something totally different, I even mentioned speaking at other churches about the great things that are being done through this.  Very exciting to think about,  maybe Kara will even talk in front of people (she is reading this as I write and laughing)  but who knows.  If He can take a person like Moses and create a leader out of him, then that isn't much a stretch of the imagination.
     I can't tell you enough,  pray for me.  I know it sounds selfish, but that is far from the intent.  I just want you to pray and seek God's will in my life and yours and while we do that, lets watch for the Amazing thing He is going to reveal. 

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Day 9....

All I can say is WOW!  So much has been happening yesterday and today.  Yesterday,  a friend from my work and his wife came over to see me.  When I talked to him Tuesday, he said that it may sound weird but his wife had prayed for people in the past and they were healed.  He said I didn't have to tell him right then but if I wanted to he would ask her to come pray for me.  Without hesitation I told him yes.  After he talked to his wife and told her that he had volunteered her we set up Saturday afternoon.  She came over and told me how she would like to pray for me and then read me scriptures on why she would pray the way she did.  I had no pre-conceived notion on how this would be done, so I wasn't sure how it would go.  But it was a very holy time and I could feel the Lord's presence as her and her husband prayed for me.  (Thank you so know who you are)  My wife was there of course, and I also had our two children there as well.  When they left and we were riding to a friends house I asked the boys what they thought of that, and of course they said it was different.  I told them I hope that God chooses to heal me through the prayers of others, and the reason why is so only God would be able to get the glory.  I still hope that happens.

Today was great!  I got up this morning and was very excited and scared at the same time.  My nature is to worry alot about things, so I was worried about today not going as good as I had it in my mind.  But looking back over today, it was even better than I pictured.  I wish I could have taped all of the expressions of love that were told to me today....from the old to even the very young, it seemed this story God has given me has struck a chord with many.  Who would have thought that God would use an average guy like me for this. Praise God! One thing that has really been brought to light in looking inward is that I have never truly worshiped the Lord.  I would just keep my emotions inside and let just a little out, but today I felt like I was really able to open my hear to God and worship.  The songs I we played today I have heard hundreds of times, but it was so amazing how God highlighted words in each song....Healer, holy, and so many more that normally not mean much to me. I really felt the Holy Spirit in each service, and thank all of you that came out and prayed with me to our God for His will in all of this.  For those of you that were at the 2nd and 3rd service, I asked Dean to speak (Sooo not me) but for those of you that did not get to hear me....Here is what I pray for all of you.
1) Pray that I am healed....and tell your friends to pray for me that I am healed.  I would love to make it through this and be somewhere far away from here one day and run into or meet someone and when I tell them my name they will say....I prayed for you.  I have told Kara this several times.  
2) What I want for all of us.....whether God chooses to heal me or not.  I want us to see the amazing thing that God has planned in this.  The very first day I got the results I came home and told Kara that God is going to do something amazing.  I dont know what it is....but I want you to follow this story and watch as God reveals it to us will be worth the wait I promise.

Now lets see what tomorrow brings...are you ready?

Friday, March 2, 2012

Day 7 Addition

Just wanted to share a call I got today.  The Doctor from Duke Called me about 3:30 today while I was at work.  Again he threw me off guard.  He is very abrupt and doesn't beat around the bush.  He said" this is Doctor ** and we reviewed your MRI and we think the next step is a biopsy.  We will get all of the insurance worked out and call you next week.  "  I said  uhhh....I went to Wake Forest yesterday and  they said that they wanted to do a biopsy.  When I said that he said " we you need to decide if you want to go to Wake Forest or do you want to go to the best"  No modesty there. He said that I need to make the decision before scheduling anything because there are many people who would want to be in my spot.  So I told him to count me in.  He said the man that will do my biopsy is the best...period.  This Doctor is the doctor who the Kennedy family chose for Ted Kennedy a few years ago to operate on his brain tumor.  And they could choose from any Doctor in the world.  So I feel this is great news that I again had a friend of a friend that chose to help me.  He didn't get me in contact with a clinic.....he actually gave me the Doctor's pager number which I have been told that not just anyone gets.  God is so good.  I believe He will show how good he is this weekend when my church family prays for me at all 3 services on Sunday.  If you are reading this I hope that you will come and experience God's blessings during one of these services. Yes I want God to heal me...but more than that I want God to show Himself to us all.

Day 7....

Well today makes one week since I received the news from my Doctor and two weeks from the time of first symptoms.  Wow, my life is completely different now.  God has changed my view on life, especially redefining what is important.  I have received an overwhelming amount of response and encouragement from those that I have known along the way to people I have never met.  Kara had one of her best customers contact her to recommend doctors in Colorado to her if we didn't have any here and to tell us that his family is praying for us.  One of my childhood friends contacted me to tell me that they have put me on her prayer wall at church and that 450 people that I have never met are praying for me in Virginia.  The Lord has been absolutely amazing in working things out this past 7 days.  I know without a doubt that He is going to do something amazing and I want everyone to witness it.  I can't wait for Him to show off!   Over the last few days it feels that I have the clearest view of my life ever.  At band practice last night, I was able to play and sing each song (Singing from memory)  I know that doesn't sound like much but I am not exactly coordinated enough to do so on a regular basis.  I typically can do one or the other but not both.    i is like a fog has been lifted from my mind is the only way to describe it.
       Yesterday at Wake Forest went pretty good.  I met with the doctor and he discussed the different philosophies of treating the tumor.  He was unable to look at my MRI but had talked to the doctor from Monday.  The next step is for him to meet with the others on the "Tumor Board" at Wake on Tuesday.  This is a group of doctors from all forms of treatment (Chemo, Radiation, Neurosurgeons, etc) that will all work together to figure out the best plan for getting rid of the tumor.  So Tuesday or Wednesday I should  be able to find out the next step.  The doctor said that it will probably be getting a biopsy, which would mean drilling into my head and letting the air out.  From there they will be able to see what kind of tumor it really is and then start treating it.
       If there is anything that I have learned this week is that God is not a mean God, He does have what is best in mind for us.  Now what I think is best for me and what He does I am sure is totally two diffent things.  My idea would be a nice house at St. Thomas with a boat, but God knows better than me what is fulfilling and what counts.  Each day I am here I have found joy in the little things that I never paid attention to.  Talking to someone I don't know and getting to know them...hearing their story, Aksing someone how they are and actually waiting for an answer, wanting to do for others than just making myself content.  These are little things I have noticed now that I enjoy.  I am sure I will have many more revealed to me.
       I will quit rambling, there is just one thing that I want you to think about that my pastor and I discussed yesterday.  We were talking about now that I have this tumor he started telling me that there is no way of knowing how many days I have and I interruped him before he could finish and said "Neither do you.." he said that was the point he was going to make.  I have been blessed with having my eyes opened to the fact none of us have an expiration date on our birth certificate.  I am now more deliberate about living my life now.  I try not to waste time or should not either.