Some good news: The test results so far indicate that the cancer is the Neuroblastoma type and NOT the sarcoma. They still have more tests to run. It's likely Esther will have 5 straight days of inpatient chemo starting Thursday or Friday. The doctor's concern is that because the cancer is in a weird location (in her skull) that it might have started somewhere else. Please pray that this is not the case. But praise God that all indicators are that it is not the sarcoma! We'll be at Children's Hospital starting tomorrow when she has her chemo port put in (surgery starting at 1pm) and more tests done and we'll come home after her first round of treatment is done. (update from Anthony)
The last week has been such a blur, so dull and so vivid. I keep finding myself in a room and no idea why I'm there or stopping mid-sentence. I am overwhelmed by fear in circumstances, sadness for a little girl who has really no idea the journey she will endure, heartbroken for my other four children who are doing their best to understand all of the new needs and who are scared for their little sister.
At the same time I am overwhelmed by the kindness and love shown to us. Thank you for praying and asking others to join in prayer. We are desperate for it and feel lifted up. For the amazing friends who spent a hot Saturday afternoon scrubbing my un-airconditioned house, washing every sheet, towel, blanket, stuffed animal and piece of clothing they could find. I am thankful for the generous friends and family who see our needs when we're just walking in circles. We feel so unworthy of such love.
I am striving to continually remind myself, from simple VBS lessons, I can trust God...no matter who you are, no matter how you feel, no matter what people do, no matter what happens,no matter where you are.
The morning of Esther's biopsy I was fighting to remember that God is a kind and generous God who willingly gave His son's life for my own, that He doesn't punish. This trial isn't because of something we have or have not done. The One Year Bible reading for that day was 2 Kings 3-4:17, there were three stories of God's kindness. He united three kings & gave them victory against enemies even though they hadn't honored God's ways. He generously provided for a woman about to lose her children to a creditor by multiplying the only thing of value she had...a small jar of oil. She trusted God and He multiplied that oil. He saved her sons. Right after that is the story of a Shunammite woman who had shown the prophet Elisha hospitality when he was in town. She was not a Jew and did not culturally follow the ways of the Israelites. She could bring God nothing, she did not know the religious rules and standards, yet God had a kindness planned for her. She had no son and her husband was old. Elisha inquired about what be a way for them to thank her. She was too afraid to ask, it was just too painful so another had to tell Elisha her want for a son. When Elisha told her she would have a son she said, "No, my lord, O man of God; do not lie to your servant." The next year she held her son.
I was right there...scared to hope. From my journal..
"You poured goodness over undeserving kings and faithful people. Yu are the same---you are my jar filler, my child giver--hope where none is found, the Shunammite woman couldn't fathom to believe--it just hurt too much, but you did it!"
God is good and kind no matter what. I can trust God not because I am good and faithful but because HE is good and faithful. I continually see his fingerprints of kindness. There are two other families we know with children fighting cancer...God has given us friends to pray with, talk with, eat with. While we'd rather be spending time together under different circumstances, this too is a kindness. These families would love your prayers too and we'd love for you to lift up their lives along with Esther's. You can read about Thomas' journey here: http://shapingheartshome.wordpress.com/ and Aly's journey here: http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/AlyzaConley.
Thank you for your prayers and support. Pray we would continue to see God's fingerprints, that we would remember His unending faithfulness.