It’s been five weeks since my oncologist ordered a test to see if I could try immunotherapy. This is a treatment that essentially helps the body’s immune system fight cancer cells, so there is not the same level of toxicity as with chemotherapy. It has been approved for a small number of cancer treatments, but is now in an experimental stage for other kinds of cancer (like mine). The requirement is that your tumor has a certain structure to it, so before starting the treatment, a sample of the tumor itself has to be sent off for testing.
About two weeks ago, they discovered there wasn’t enough tissue left from my September biopsy to get a good test done, so off for another biopsy I went. And then waited again.
Yesterday my doctor gave me the results. I don’t qualify for the treatment. It was a bit discouraging as I was hoping to have a new option for treatment.
So we press on. Since other test results show a progression of the disease, the next step is to get me hooked up with a Hospice home care team to help out with pain management. That’s beginning to be an issue, so we’re trying some new meds as well as some alternative care products that may help to control the increasing discomfort.
Honestly, it feels like I’ve crossed a somewhat frightening horizon line here. But when I look back over the last year since getting diagnosed, I can’t help but be thankful, instead, for all that God has done. It is always a miracle to be given time. It gives you the freedom to say things that need to be shared, do things that were important to finish, and be with the people who are special in your life. The time spent with family has been precious. And I can’t even begin to express how blessed we’ve been to reunite with ministry friends from New Hampshire and California. Christy and I spent a large part of our lives serving together in church. Reconnecting with old friends was special. Many thanks to everyone who helped make that possible.
So at this point, we hang on to those memories, move forward, and confidently wait for whatever God has next. As many have reminded us, He still works miracles!