Monday, January 23, 2012

Mind over Mordor

So I feel like crap today. I said it, I mean it. Since my last post we have just been waiting until Gamma Knife day. We leave for UVA in the morning. I have two rounds of Avastin in my system and started daily Temodar a week ago. I am wondering which of these delightful concoctions is causing me to feel especially bad over the last few days. It is probably the combination of all of it including the rebound inflammation that makes me feel like I was hit by a truck. So, I wrestle on.

The key is to pay close attention to my thoughts. Every body sensation can send the mind down the long and winding road. For instance, I have a headache today. I had a headache when I had my seizure back in July. See how I could freak out? I feel extra tired with no reason to be. My WBC was a bit low last blood work. Is the Temodar destroying my blood? Again, there is a choice to be made. I can't paint, so I feel useless. See where this could take me? To Mordor basically.

But one does not simply walk into Mordor, but one can think her way in easily. Most easily when she feels like crap. You don't even need Gollum.

"And do not be conformed to this world, (...which has taught us it is all about us....thank you Enlightenment) but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Romans 12

"Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things." Phil 4

The battle is on the mind and it all boils down to this: Who do you think God is and what is He like? Jesus is constantly pushing the tension with me at this place in my life. "Do you trust me or not?" And I make that choice to believe what He says about Himself not to get relief because sometimes I don't, or get points (that is religion and I am already accepted completely because of His death and resurrection.) I choose to trust who He says He is so I can walk in reality by acknowledging His sovereignty, His perfect will and His choices for me as His daughter. I choose to trust Him because I love Him.

I acknowledge His rightful ownership over all things....including my body. I choose Him.

"Christ's Cross+Romans 8:28+God's sovereignty = "Every single thing that happens to us expresses God's love for us." JI Packer

I am always open to talking about what I post so feel free....and pray for my surgery Wednesday.

Grateful to each of you who has pushed on with me without ceasing.....

Gamma Knife video

Friday, January 06, 2012

Gamma Knife Video

I will be having the remarkable Gamma Knife surgery on January 25th. Here is a video of
how it works.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Pressing Upward

I have been thinking lately how my life seems to be nothing more than a schedule of next medications, doctors and procedures. It seems every aspect and corner of my life has changed from the trajectory of my days to coming and going relationships. Some of these have been quite painful. No. Actually all of it has been painful, both physically and emotionally. But there are seasons for all things. I fully believe that now. Learning to let go is one of the most difficult things we will ever do whether it is something physical or relational.

One of the issues I am dealing with now is rebound inflammation. This is an unfortunate result of long term use of steroids. In short, Decadron suppresses the metabolism of omega fats and once discontinued the body is hit with unmetabolized fats that result in inflammation. So I have very bad joint and muscle pain. You could say I am like an arthritic. Some days are worse than others. The key is to focus on the truth of God's promises regardless of what things appear to be. When I am in that funk, not wanting to get out of bed or feeling afraid of the new IV drug I am taking, or when I begin to wonder how things will go for me, I must discipline my mind. Sometimes it takes me a few hours to get there, sometimes a few days. Let me tell you, this is much, much more difficult than disciplining the body. No contest. A friend said to me recently, "The battle for your body is only minor compared to the battle for your confidence in Jesus." So when all appears dark, the light of Christ and who He is"......Word. Any hope or confidence I put in what I see is a wasted hope, a worthless confidence since every thing we see will be gone someday. You will die, that flat screen you got for Christmas will end up in a landfill. So what are you hoping in? My body is already failing me. At 42, in the best shape and health of my life, Glioblastoma shows up. If I survive this journey, there will be something else down the road. My point is new pain, new potentially risky drugs.....I must learn to focus on the bigger design...the giant purpose written by God. If not I won't make it. I'll cave in under the weight of these physical and relational struggles.

Craig does a better job with details so here is the report on our trip to Duke last week.

"...we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. 17 For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, 18 while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal." 2 Corinthians 4