My digestive difficulties continued to persist since my last report dated 5/12. I returned for a visit with Dr. Helton on 5/17. His main concern was that with my every-other-day vomiting routine it might contribute towards mal-absorption of nutrients and my blood work may have gone wacky. As it turned out, my blood chemistry and hematology were all very acceptable. And he stated that I looked healthy, contrary to my symptoms.
Dr. Helton offered me the option to have an endoscopic exam by the gastroenterologist to rule out such things as a developing ulcer. Not satisfied with the status quo, I concurred to be put on the schedule for this week.
But, Happy Report!!! Last Thursday, 5/19, was a turnaround day. Sometime during the day, I undeniably felt repeated waves of stomach peristalsis going left to right, and an awareness that food was in fact going down. This happened suddenly and distinctively. I even felt hungry enough to eat a piece of chicken with rice for dinner at the NW Synod Council meeting at 6 pm. (Previously, I had stopped eating around 3-4 pm each day for my stomach already felt full.)
At the Council Meeting, Vice President Georganne acknowledged my attendance after a long hiatus due to my health. I stood and thanked everyone for their love, concern and their fervent prayers and concluded by saying, “the successful surgery gave me a chance for success, with further Chemo therapy gives me increased probability of success, but with your continual prayers, that will give me the certainty of success.” I am truly thankful and moved by the large number of people who genuinely care for my health and welfare.
Linnea acted as my ‘handler,’ taking me everywhere and attended the Synod Assembly with me on Friday and Saturday. At the Assembly, Pastor Paul surprised me by leading everyone in raising the purple ballot sheets which he provided each voting member to show support and solidarity against pancreatic cancer. My GI system has shown no sign of setback since Thursday; although not perfect, it has been probably 80% back to normal throughout the convention to the present.
Today when Virginia Mason called to give me my time for endoscopy, I cancelled that procedure.
I next visit Dr. Picozzi, the oncologist, on June 1st to start my next round of Chemo therapy. I know you’ll continue cheering for me. As able, I will keep you posted.