I am sure you all remember (well those that are our age anyway) the number song from Sesame Street. We have a new appreciation for number 6 in our house. That is the half-way point for Beautiful’s severe Chemo. She will have another 9 months of chemo that is significantly more mild (and we are told will actually boost her immune system), but that is the future and 6 is now.
Chemotherapy is an amazing process. The doctors are essentially infusing controlled poisons to suppress the parts of the complicated system that is the patient’s body. In way of analogy (because who doesn’t love an analogy), think of your body like an orchestra and Cancer is a very bad drummer. In order to quiet that particular participant, the entire percussion section must be silenced. The conductor cannot call upon any of them without calling for all of them. Chemotherapy does exactly that. It shuts down (or significantly slows down) the parts of the body that contribute to cell growth, etc. I know this is a massive oversimplification, but that is the point of analogy after all.
Of course when you start shutting down things in the body, you are going to have some challenges. We are right in the thick of those. Beautiful has started to loose her hair. Since her hair was so thick before chemo, after a few weeks of that, she now has the hair that most ladies do. She did cut it down to a pixie cut to help with scalp irritation, but otherwise, it is hard to tell. Her heart is working harder now (ah the wonders of FitBit) because she has fewer cells in her blood to get the work down. She is also taking medicine for nausea constantly (as well as a few others) but for the most part, she can still eat fairly normally. Where we all notice it the most is her energy. She doesn’t have the same energetic buzz that she used to have. Thunder and I do what we can so she doesn’t have to worry about the smaller children, but we all know what a couple of guys are like as replacements for one Supermom. It is sort of be like the difference between what we were all hoping for in this presidential election, and what we actually get to chose from. I know, pathetic right!?
Needless to say, the entire process continues to be a faith building experience for all of us. God has given us many new friends and plenty of opportunities to talk about what God is doing in our lives. Most days we are all doing pretty well trusting the Lord for His provision and protection. When one us is in a funk, usually the others are able to pick them up again. So far, we have not had any days where ALL of us are in a funk. That could get noisy (or nosier than our house usually is). I pray that day does not come!
Jesus said each day has enough trouble of its own and we are learning to live that. Yesterday’s troubles are gone with the sun and each day is a new opportunity to hit reset and give our all. For now, we are content to be half way, so we will keep singing our song of 6 and enjoying the time we have.