Sunday, January 4, 2009


Written by Jodee McCabe    
Sunday, 04 January 2009  4:25 PM

It has been quite awhile since you have heard from us.  We survived December although we did not get to take our trip with our whole family to New York.  Our kids had worked hard to arrange for all of us to be able to spend Christmas together at our cabin.  Karla's family celebrated their Christmas a week early so that we could have them for both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day (THANK YOU!!)   But......the weather on our east/west route of I-90 became too unpredictable for our kids who had limited windows of opportunity to get to and from N.Y. and so rather than becoming separated or spending Christmas worrying about the weather, we chose to stay in OH.  We had a wonderful Christmas Eve and Day all together and made many lovely memories.  Yes, we were disappointed to not be able to play in the snow and not to be able to visit our good friends in NY, but we are continually reminded of all of the blessings we have even in the midst of disappointment.

It was so much fun to have the kids and grandkids home for some of the Christmas preparations!  Meg is helping Morgan decorate the cookies.

Megan guided the construction and decorating of their own Gingerbread House.

Looks pretty awesome, if you ask me!!

Part of the fun is cleaning up.

Meg and Morgan work on a surprise for PopPop...a NOTRE DAME blanket!!

Finally!  Christmas Eve!!

Somebody got a fireman's hat.  Wonder who that was from?

It was such a treat to have them here on Christmas Morning!!  And look what Santa brought Morgan!

We are so grateful for this special Christmas together.  It was tempered a bit by our not being able to have our dream of being at the cabin and by not being able to say good-bye to our dear friend in NY who passed away on Dec. 23, but it was so wonderful to have that time together....all together for Christmas.  We are very, very grateful.

Now the holidays are over, the tree is down, the decorations are put away and it is time for more medical appts.  If you remember, Dan completed one last round of Sutent, his oral chemo, right before Christmas, just to give him the best possible chance to NOT have more brain tumors form before the next MRI.  That last round was pretty tough.  All of his side effects were worse than before and for the first time, he experienced quite a bit of nausea and GI discomfort.  We were attributing that to the chemo.  But now that he has been off chemo for 2 weeks and still has some GI symptoms, we are not so sure. Perhaps, just as the side effects were stronger, it will take longer for the side effects to completely go away.

Even though he was very uncomfortable through that last round, he stuck it out and completed it.  Now at least we know he did everything he could do.

Tomorrow early in the morning we go in for his high def MRI to see the results of the stereotactic radiographic surgery he had done 8 weeks ago and to see if there are any new tumors.  We are praying that no new tumors would be there and that the results from the SRS would be better than before, if that is possible.

If there are no new tumors and the other tumors have been adequately diminished he will begin an IV administered chemotherapy.  We do not know if it will be as part of a clinical trial or not. Results of the SRS and also negotiations with our medical insurance are pending.  Please pray for the best solution to be worked out, both medically and financially.

If we only looked at our future in terms of medicine and man's knowledge, we would be quite discouraged.  But as many of you remind us and as we read in Scripture, our present and our future is in God's hands.  Dan has already passed by the prognosis of 3 to 6 months and most people would not be able to tell, by looking at him, that he is not well.  Some days it is even hard for us to believe. We are grateful for each day.

Please pray for us to be able to sense God's presence with us tomorrow as we learn just where Dan is: the results of the SRS and whether or not there is any new growth of the disease in his brain.  Please pray that the knowledge of His presence will not only give us peace in all circumstances but that it would shine through us to those around us, offering hope to the hopeless.

Thank you once again for being on our "team" and literally holding us in prayer.  We will let you know what the docs say tomorrow.