Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Still waiting...

Last week as I was headed out the door to the clinic, I paused just long enough to snap a few photos.  My hydrangea plant was still blooming, right in the midst of fall weather.  In fact we covered the plant hoping to preserve it a bit longer, but alas, the frost crept in that night and the once bright colors were instantly turned brown.  I was so thankful I had stopped and gotten a few images.

As I looked closer, I noticed that the plant was showing every stage- from the green of the newest buds, to the bright pink of a fully blossomed flower.  There was even some rust patches of reds, yellows and browns creeping into the bottom.  Does the plant really know which season it is in? 

The temperatures are low enough at night that we awaken to a layer of glistening frost in the mornings.  Yet by mid-afternoon, the temps turn into a warmth hovering in the mid-seventies.  Different parts of the day have us either pulling on layers for warmth, or quickly shedding them, with thoughts of what was I thinking when I put this on earlier today?  

It's actually a pretty good metaphor for how I feel these days!  

I had my PET scan on Monday.  With Dr. Panwalkar being on vacation, I saw Lori, a nurse practitioner,  for my appointment on Tuesday.  She has helped me often in the infusion center, checking on me when my infusion nurse, or I have had a concern.  

But everything felt out of place for me yesterday.  My appointment had been changed by the infusion center to an afternoon and I couldn't get it changed back to morning this time.  So Rick had to leave half way through my appointment.  But Lori was honest in saying she simply didn't have enough experience in reading PET scans to truly tell me much of anything that day. While some changes in the scan from 3 months ago, are evident in the scan on Monday, just how much change is the biggest question.   Plus, my platelets were too low yesterday  and I wouldn't qualify for any infusion treatment.  

The report by the radiologist had enough questions in it, that nothing was very conclusive and Lori felt it would be best to wait for Dr. Panwalkar to return from his trip next week to see me- hopefully.  He returns to work next Tuesday, and his schedule will likely be daunting.  Yet they said they would try to get me squeezed in.  So much, is simply out of my hands.  I hardly know what to do.

In the meantime we are in the process of getting me set up for a kidney stent replacement again.  Its hard to fathom its been 3 months since the last one and on November 2nd, I'll be having yet another stent replacement day surgery- but this time at the new hospital which I haven't seen as of yet.

So I'm kind of in limbo.  Both physically, and emotionally.  I'm clinging to today and focusing on all that I can do right now,  and trying hard not to focus on what lies ahead, or doesn't.  I simply don't know.  My outside and my inside simply don't match.  

Yet as much as I am in today,  the future calls to me to engage, to plan, to dream.  Plus, having so many of you showing up and sending me such thoughtful responses to my last blog post helps me fill with hope and keep my eyes seeking the future, as uncertain as it is, for all of us really.

A couple of my cousins and their daughters came to visit me last week.  They brought warmth, laughter and a sense of family back to me, which meant so much.  But they also brought the gift of a battery-charged heated coat!  The battery attaches in the back in a small pocket and the buttons shown on the front help you regulate the amount of heat that is generated.  

How cool is that!  Its perfect for the rink and I'm longing to be able to try it!  

Thank you Mary, Jackie, Nichole, and Brook- and the whole Brainerd crew!  

We also have a wonderful neighbor who offered to cook some casseroles for us once a week.  She offered to use my tuna noodle casserole recipe, and Colton is pretty over the moon to know whats coming.  Plus so many who have also brought other meals, and come to visit and have simply helped us feel supported, and valued and loved.  Its those very things that help me yearn for all the tomorrows, knowing that He has this.  He has me.  He has our family in the palm of his hands and he shows us every day that the bottom line is...

"All shall be well."  


  1. Cool coat!!

    Waiting is never fun, that's for sure. I pray you will feel Grace for this in-between time. Extra-ordinary grace and peace. Hugs xxx

    1. Thank you for praying for the very thing that will see me through. I managed a little photo shoot and some time down by the river where I could still feel the warmth of the golden sun on my face. I'm as awestruck as ever by these little things and that certainly feels like Grace right there.

  2. So frustrating to wait as it allows our minds to fill with the "what-if?"s and the "maybe-that-means?" and all the other rotten things our brains love to grab a thread from and run like a maniacal kitten. I pray for calm and POSITIVE impressions while you wait and I SO appreciate someone that says, "You know, I DON'T know so, I'm going to leave it to the guy who does." She might have seen something really good but questioned herself. So, here's to Dr. P next week.

    And the visit and the coat must have been the best medicine, Vicky. How perfect. And i love your hydrangea. I just have one and it's the exact same color. Now I'll think of you when I see it. ❤️

    1. Robynn, our blogging buddies Robin and Sara sent me that hydrangea when my father passed away, 7 years ago. So many visitors ask for my secret in sustaining it, as this variety often doesn't grow well in our soil and climate. But its all out of my hands. Year after year it renews itself and each year the blossoms are more abundant than previous years. I love that you have one too! We're still connected. Thanks for the prayers for those specific things to come my way- I'm in denial about next week and will deal with that at that time. Blessings and love to you!

  3. i realized today that i didn't see an instagram post of you from the infusion center, so i was glad to find this post in my reader tonight. i can only imagine how incongruent your insides and outsides feel! waiting is so challenging, but it is not wasted time. it is holy work and you are submitted to it, i know.

    SO STOKED to read about God's answer to your dilemma for how you'd stay warm in the rink!! who knew they make heated coats!!! He cares about every little detail that concerns us, and now you'll have what you need to be where i know you most want to be! squealing for joy here!

    1. Yes, whether its denial or detachment, over the years I've learned not to invest too much emotionally in test results before I have to. Next week I'll be more nervous at that time, but the boys are on break from school and I am just soaking in my time with them. The coat is definitely a God send in so many ways!

  4. Oh my dear soul sis,
    Monday, at almost every turn, you were in my thoughts and prayers. Prayers for the big things (like the results of your tests) and prayers for the smaller, yet very important things, like
    the freezing weather in Minnesota and you feeling cold at hockey games. While I wish the test had gone more smoothly, and Rick didn't have to leave, what I know for sure is that God was there every inch of the way. He's a "stayer", that God of ours. All day long I kept asking Him, no matter what, that you might feel His presence.

    And what a total JOY to hear that there is an electric coat to keep you warm! Who knew? It just makes me smile to imagine you putting that on so you can see the boys skate their hearts out.
    Thank you God for miracles large and small.

    Know that I love you, always to the moon and back, my dear soul sis! Know that I share your wisdom and what I have learned from you every day. (Talked about you just this week in my intercultural class) :)

    I won't stop praying!

    1. I love how you said God is a "stayer." What a great image that is and I will hold on to just that! I'm always encouraged by your sweetest of words and just to see your smiling face show up here is the best medicine! And if you can share something about me that helps even 1 student learn something than it makes all of this worth it. Thank you for that gift! Love you soul-sis, to the moon and all the way back!

  5. Praying for good results for you Vicky! Wish I was closer -- I'd bring over meals and goodies too -- but please remember, you are always in my thoughts and prayers!

    1. Genny- those thoughts and prayers sure see me through and mean so much to me- so grateful to have you in my life! Blessings to you!

  6. Beautiful, graceful you... Keep yearning for all the tomorrow's! Because our Creator does have you all in his 'Whole embrace'! I so love the battery operated warm coat you received. What an amazing well thought out gift! How priceless! I had no clue something like that existed! Personally speaking I have had times I could have used one of those! I have been concentrating on this quote 'We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the Life that is waiting for us.' This is NOT easy to do at all...but it resonates truth. You show us that, and the human struggle behind that. I will be praying that results will be of a comfortable nature. That what you feel inside will match more if the outside. I simply love beautiful you. And your family and will continue praying that all shall be well!!!

  7. Praying for you as always, dear friend and saying thankful prayers too for all those thoughtful gifts you have been receiving. Taking one day at a time can be hard for all of us, but if we remember that God has "got this", then it can become easier.

    Sending warm hugs and love across the miles.


  8. That coat is just the best thing! And I'm wondering... do you have a heated Mattress top? I saw them last week at Walmart - and my friend blogged about them, said they're wonderful.

    Praying for the best possible scan results, and thank you for praying for Dylan. He was able to fly home with his mother to continue treatment near family. He very much appreciates your letter of encouragement.

  9. Oh, how I love how you see life and love all around you. And you do the same for others--you bring life and love.

    Praying for you. And I'd never heard of a battery operated coat! What a great gift!

    Much love,

  10. What a neat coat! I am sure you will wear it many times. Praying for good news when the doctor returns and reads your scans.

  11. Oh how I love Hydrangeas! And the coat is such a wonderful and thoughtful gift. I love that your neighbor will make the tuna noodle casserole. It really is about the small moments in life, isn't it? I hope you find ease with your waiting. I have a friend who has just been diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time and is now facing a mastectomy. She is handling it all with relative ease as she says she has no other choice. I like to think your positive and loving attitude flows through you, to me, to my friend. Hugs to you.

  12. I am always happy to hear from you and to read about the blessings that The Lord has given you through it all. And he does. And He will continue. Through it all.
    I'm reading (and doing a Bible study) on Kay Arthur's "Lord, Where Are You When Bad Things Happen?"....and the study of His Word has helped me uncover questions just like Habakkuk had. Valid questions. I am so blessed to know that He is and always will be with us....
    I send you much love, my sweet friend.
    I pray as you await further results and procedures. You are covered....not only in the prayers of your friends and family ..but most importantly you are covered by the blood of our Savior. There is power in that!
    I love you.

  13. Thinking of you and praying for you always! I love the heated coat will be warm watching hockey!

  14. Oh my dear sweet friend,
    You have been on my mind and heart all weekend. I'm not sure if you have had a chance to talk with Dr. P yet, but no matter what the news, I want you to know I am asking God to shower you with HOPE! HOPE in big doses. HOPE to see you through each day. HOPE to remind you how much you matter. HOPE to help you realize that you make such a HUGE difference in so many lives/ in my life. HOPE so you would know you are never alone. Never ever. In the hardest moments... He is there. Just wanted you to know that I love you, always dear one, to the moon and back! Sending you warm hugs and loves and prayers from Spokane! Love, Linda


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