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Oct 17, 2017 Latest post:
Mar 5, 2018
Tom and I, Jorja, learned in August of 2017 that Tom has stage 4 Melanoma cancer. He began immunotherapy in September. Every 3 weeks, we go for him to get infusions of Opdivo (one hour) and Yervoy (1 1/2 hours) for a total of 2 1/2 hour visits. I am allowed to remain with him. At our first visit, he said he felt I should get an IV, also. I declined. (Yes, he still has his sense of humor.) The week after an infusion, we visit the oncologist. He has had 2 of the infusions and will be having 2 more, if he can tolerate 4 doses of the Yervoy. After that, he will just be on the Opdivo every 2 weeks for 2 years. We are praying for complete remission, of course. Immunotherapy was developed for Melanoma, although it is sometimes used with other cancers. It causes the white blood cells to attack the cancer. We are hoping he can tolerate all 4 doses of the Yervoy, but we'll be glad when he's done with it. So far, his main side effects are an increasingly itchy rash on his body and fatigue. He went through a hot flash phase, but for now, that has settled down. Two Scriptural principles have become very real to us: Live in the moment, taking one day at a time, and when we make plans, say (or at least think) "Lord willing". I say we make "pencil" plans...easily erasable. As long as we live in the moment, we are experiencing God's supernatural peace. None of us have been given the grace to deal with "tomorrow", so it's best to live in the moment. God has been blessing us abundantly. In August, 2 missionaries moved in with us for a year: Kat (age 28) from Germany, and Cainan, age 18 from Brazil. We're so thankful to have them here! We also get to interact with the other two 18 year old girls from Germany. We also enjoy our 3 children, two son-in-laws, Kristy & Jonathan's 3 children (ages 5, 3, & Levi born in July), and our newest foster care granddaughter, age 15, who is now living with Heather & Joshua! We all fell in love with her almost instantly. Three year old Savannah said of 15 year old Savannah: "Her my new best friend. I love her." We all do! We're also blessed to have all of you...friends and relatives who encourage and pray for us! That's it for now. Tomorrow we leave for Lake Arrowhead. Tom will have the company of 4 of us women for most of Friday, then he'll have the house and boat to himself while the rest of us attend a women's retreat at Alpine, where Heather works full time. We'll return home Sunday afternoon. Now we'll see if I'm actually able to post this...as you know, I'm not very computer savvy.