Ruth’s Story

Site created on August 2, 2019

From Quintin…

I’d appreciate your prayers for my wonderful wife, Ruth.  In June, it was discovered that she has a large, malignant tumor in her pelvis/hip.  The technical name for this exceedingly rare bone cancer is peripheral chondrosarcoma.
 
Ruth is having surgery on Tuesday, September 3 to remove it.  Her long-term prognosis is very good, as the tumor is believed to be level 1, low-grade, and does not appear to have invaded any other areas. Praise God!

The only treatment is surgical removal (no chemo or radiation).  However, it is a major surgery (6-10 hours), and long hospitalization (1-2 weeks), and difficult rehab (2 months intensive, then additional for 1+ year). 

We are rejoicing and thankful to God because it could have been much worse.  And we are grateful to God because only about 25 hospitals in the nation even treat this kind of cancer -- but the University of Iowa Hospital is a national leader in the treatment of chondrosarcoma.  So, we are able to be close to home.

That said, it’s a major health ordeal, and I’m so sorry my bride has to endure all of this.

Thanks in advance for all your love and support and prayers!  We deeply appreciate it.  Throughout these last few months, we have leaned into a favorite Scripture of ours…

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.  For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

In reality, every day we have is a gift.  So, we especially treasure each new day, even with its troubles, and find joy in the goodness and love that the Lord has poured into our lives – and so much of that goodness and love is through people like you.

From the bottom of our hearts – from me and from Ruth.  We love you all.  God bless you guys!

Quintin

Newest Update

Journal entry by ruth stieff

From Quintin...

Hi everyone... I wanted to give you and update on the awesome Ruth Stieff.  Following the flareup in an infection, Ruth and I journeyed again yesterday (Thursday) to the University of Iowa (in Iowa City). 

THE TEAM
We met with various doctors. We now are working with a team of doctors from these 5 areas:
  • Orthopedic surgery (our main focus)
  • Reconstructive surgery 
  • Oncology (Ruth is cancer-free; next routine checkup is in November)
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Internal Medicine

We are extremely grateful to God for these outstanding medical professionals!

SURGERY
Ruth will have surgery on Monday afternoon, Lord willing.  This surgery will be to remove any infection or infected tissues, and thoroughly clean the area.  She will also have a smallportion of her femur (thigh bone) removed because the bone is infected.  This aim of this surgery is to completely remove any infection. (As the oncologist said, "Your problem is no longer cancer.  It's this persistent infection.")

RECOVERY
We expect Ruth to be in the hospital for about 5 days.  Following that, we hope to be able to return home.  (We pray that they will not suggest going to a care facility or rehab hospital, or that that will be necessary.)

Ruth will be able to return to using her walker following this surgery.  However, she will not be allowed to put any weight on her right leg for 6-12 weeks.  So, that sets back her recovery and rehab to some degree.

Also, please pray that Ruth would maintain her appetite following surgery.  We don't want her to lose any more weight!  

SUPPORT
Your kindness, thoughts, friendship, prayers, notes, emails and practical help are greatly appreciated, especially for the months of August through October.  Ruth will not be as mobile during this recovery period. 

PRAYER
If you are free, join us for a brief prayer time tomorrow (Saturday) at 10 am at the big tent at the Valley Community Center (4444 Fuller Road, West Des Moines, Iowa).  

Here's a prayer acronym.  Pray for God to receive all the glory as you ask Him for...
H = Heal her body
E = Eliminate all infection
A = Advance her mobility
L = Lead us by the Spirit

Naturally, we are not thrilled that Ruth will be returning to surgery and have her recovery extended.  Yesterday was a sobering day in some respects.  Monday will be exactly 11 months since the first surgery.  But we are very grateful for the medical care and the wonderful friends that God has given us throughout this journey.  We are in good spirits, by God's grace and with your support.

So, we seek always to remain... "joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."  (Romans 12:12)

We do have a deep, abiding joy that God has given to both of us.  

We love you all.  Thanks for caring!

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