Wednesday, August 10, 2011

August 10: Good News!

For all of you who have been praying for Jerry, his biopsy was clear. I just got back from his room.

Jerry's new look
The timing was perfect. I got there while his wife and brother were still crying tears of joy. Jerry was praising the Lord rather vocally.

As for me, my neutrophil count, which needs to get to 500 for me to be released was at 40 this morning, up from 10 yesterday. My personal medical news is boring, but boring is good in the hospital.

Actually, it's kind of weird. I wake up each morning lately with a nurse putting the best possible spin on my blood counts. It appears the nurses are at least as excited as me about my blood counts going up (which is very heartwarming). After that, however, there's nothing medically. My next "exciting" issue will be at 3:30 or so tomorrow morning when they take my blood, and then when the nurse comes in to tell me about my counts sometime between 5 and 7 am. That will be followed by another 24-hour wait.

So it seems like a long boring stint, but it's really not boring. The last two mornings, Don has shown up with coffee and a newspaper. He's free to go to the cafeteria downstairs, which serves Starbucks coffee. He just automatically gets me one (which his insurance is paying for, but I don't think three 20 oz. coffees is going to constitute abuse).

But now Don's gone. They released him today, just 24 hours after his stem cell transplant.

I guess it's pretty easy when the stem cells are your own. No risk of rejection; no graft-versus-host disease.

He does have to stay in the Nashville area and come in regularly for the rest of the month, which is 3 weeks.

When I do mine, which won't be my own stem cells, I'll have to stick around for 100 days.

Jerry and I are planning how we can make sure we're both in for our consolidation rounds together, and maybe our transplants can happen at the same time, too.

A Weird Story

For whatever it's worth ...

This morning, Dr. Reddy told Jerry it would be no earlier than 1 pm before he got news on his biopsy. So my plan was to go over there about 1:15.

Lunch came right at 1:00, and my wife isn't here, so I flipped on the TV to see if NCIS was on. (Now you know I'm not really all that spiritual.) It was, but when I was done eating, I thought, "I really need to go see Jerry and find out his news."

Take this however you will, but I felt like God told me, "Sit yourself right down, relax, and watch this program till it's over. You need to relax some, too."

That's a convenient word from God, huh?

I did spend some time praying for Patrick Beard rather than watching the commercials, just in case you think there's any redemptive value in that. If you get a chance, you should follow that link I just gave you, and if your giving is not maxed out for good causes, Patrick's is a great cause--at least if you're a Christian because there's some excellent preaching going on in Ethiopia through them as well as the help they give for poverty-stricken families and for education.

Okay, sorry for that divergence.

Anyway, as soon as NCIS was over, I got up and went to Jerry's room, only to walk in while his wife and brother were still crying from the good news. He was vocally praising the Lord, which I somehow doubt was his habit prior to being in this hospital, and one phone call after another was happening passing on the news.

In other words, I walked in at the perfect time, right at the height of the celebration.

Every now and then, God speaks to me about little things--wait till NCIS is over--sometimes, I believe, for no other reason than to say, "I'm paying attention, I'm for you, and I care."

I'm not special or unique.


  1. That is good news. We have been praying for Jerry and you. I love all you spoke of in this post except your statement that you are not unique. With that I have to disagree. Your are one of the most unique people I have ever known and that is one of the reasons I love you so. Our Father loves you so and delights in giving those little love signs and wonders to you and all His unique children. Much love baba

  2. I'm in Kenya so I want to say it like the Kenyan's do ----

    They say WOW! but they say it long.... not short and brief.

    This is so encouraging! God hears our prayers and answers all the time!

  3. Loved that "timing" story, Shammah. I amen what Noah said, in fact I think I'll quote it here: "The Father... delights in giving those little love signs and wonders to you and all His unique children." I put in on my list this morning to get on your blog to find out which day was Jerry's biopsy; but here it was afternoon, and the way I found out was thru Noah's blog! I was so excited, I grabbed my phone and sent a text to everyone with the good news! Tell Jerry that was great fun. I'm smiling ear to ear, blessing the Lord for his goodness. Approximately how long will it be til he can get his bone marrow (6/6 match!)donation? Tell Jerry we're committed to him now, so we'll be praying him right on through. Thanks for blogging today, Shammah! We love and miss you, but there's no denying you're doing more good there than just teaching us and doing accounting! :) Keep blazing the trail, my brother.

  4. I love and miss all of you, too! Great to hear from Kenya! We're praying for you!

  5. Got Jerry's news from Hash as I got out of work tonight. His family has greatly expanded. Love all of your posts even the "boring" ones. This week I fell asleep while reading your blogs on my iPod touch, then I dropped it on my lip. The next morning I had a dream that I was reading your blogs on my iPod. Now that's weird dreaming. I could even remember what I read during my dream. Have you figured out how to send dream blogs somehow?
    I agree with what Hash said above, I miss you but have gained from you hospital teaching both the truths from church history or scriptures and your application of what God has given you while you are in the hospital. You are demonstrating what you believe and teach to us and all around you.
    I love you, give Goldberry and hug for me.
    John F.