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My Miracle

My Miracle             Friday, June 23, 2017

Watching Over me

MY MIRACLE

By, Helen Long

November 25, 2003 -My mother and I went to a restaurant to have lunch. My lunch was breakfast food; fried eggs, bacon, etc. There was a small amount grease on the food, but not very much. About one hour after eating I began to have some pain in my stomach. The pain would not go away. I took some over the counter medicine to try to relieve the discomfort. The pain would not go way for the complete weekend. This was Thanksgiving weekend and the doctors that I knew were not in their office and I did not want to go to the Emergency room. I have had a problem with acid reflux for several years and have been taking medication for it and I kept thinking I would eventually get relief from the pain. I did not. I noticed when I went to the restroom there would be some dark blood and I knew that would be coming from the upper colon or the stomach. My thought was a bleeding ulcer.

December 2, 2003 - I saw Dr. John Chauvin and after checking me he said he thought I had a bleeding ulcer because the abdominal area was painful to touch. He told me if the pain continued thru the night. I called him and he immediately scheduled several tests.

December 2003 - I had a ultra sound scan. It revealed a large mass on the left side of my stomach.

December 16, 2003 - I had a scan with dye and it revealed no gallbladder trouble, no bleeding ulcer. However, it did show a large mass on the left side of my stomach and it was resting on my small intestine. I called Dr. Chauvin to get the results of this test. These are the things he reported to me. I asked him if my liver was affected and he said, "No". I asked him this because I had began to have some pain in my back.

December 18, 2003 - I had another scan. Also, this included going thru the abdominal wall with a needle to get a biopsy..  This test confirmed that the mass was malignant. Two lymph nodes was involved. Dr. Chauvin labeled this Large Cell Lymphoma. He said this was a treatable cancer and after treatment I should be Alright.

January 8, 2004 - I saw Dr. Anthony Greco at the Sarah Cannon Cancer Center. He also told me that my cancer was treatable but he ordered a P.E.T. scan to see if there was any other problem in my body.

January 20, 2004 - I had the P.E.T. scan.

January 21, 2004 - I saw Dr. Greco to get the results of the test. It confirmed the large mass on the left side of my stomach but also showed a spot on my left shoulder and some spots between my lungs.

January 21, 2004 - I had my first chemo treatment. Chemo did not make me sick. No Nausea.

February 11, 2004 - I had my second chemo treatment. This is also the date I lost all my hair while taking a shower. It fell out in mass form. I had my husband to cut the rest of my hair out because it was so knotted that it could not be combed. Chemo did not make me sick. No nausea

March 3, 2004 - I had my third chemo treatment. Chemo did not make me sick. No nausea.

March 23, 2004 - I had another P.E.T. scan.

March 24, 2004 - I saw Dr Greco and got a report of the P.E.T. scan. He was very happy to report to me that the mass which had been 7 1/4 inches in diameter had shrunk to the size of an egg. The spot in my shoulder was completely gone, and the spots between my lungs involving two lymph nodes were gone and the lymph nodes had gone back to their normal size.

March 24, 2004 - I had my fourth chemo treatment. I began to have trouble with the red blood cell count dropping. I began to get a little weak. But still no nausea.

April 5, 2004 - I had my firth chemo treatment. After this treatment I became very sick in that I began to have a low grade fever; I began to have a lot of difficulty breathing, I had an excessive amount of blisters on my tongue and inside my mouth and also on the outside of my mouth. I became so weak I could not walk to the table to eat. I had an emergence visit to the doctor and my while blood cell count had dropped as well as my red blood cell count. It was at this visit my doctor told me my body could not endure any more chemo. So, he cancelled the sixth treatment. This sickness continued for several weeks. I was given medication for the blister. Also, I was given shots to help the blood problem. I had to go to the lab weekly for my blood to be tested and when needed shots to help my white blood cell count and my red blood cell count. Dr. Greco said, "Just hang on. Everything will be alright."

Still no nausea.

May 12, 2004 - I began treatment which was a substitute for chemo (Rituxan). This medicine would attack cancer cells but would not have the same effect on my system as chemo.

May 26, 2004 - I had a treatment. No Nausea.

June 10, 2004 - 7:00 A.M. I had a P.E.T. scan. At 11:00 A.M. I saw Dr. Greco to get The results of the scan. He said he was pleased with what he saw. He said he saw no evidence of cancer but he was not sure what it was he saw in the stomach area. I asked him what he meant by that. He said he thought he saw was scarred tissue but could but could not be sure. I asked him what could be done to be sure. He said surgery  but he said I didn't want that. He said he was going to continue treating me with this medication. The schedule for this is once a week for four weeks each three months. He said this could go on for a year or for three years. He could not say. He told me at this visit that if I had waited six weeks longer to see him I would not be here. (MY MIRACLE) I did not have a treatment this day.

June 30, 2004 - I went for a treatment today. Before I had the treatment Dr. Greco came in to see me. I told him I had noticed a knot on my right leg on the inside at my knee. He examine it and told me he didn't think it was related to cancer but we need to keep an eye on it. I also told him I had been have some pain in my left side. He told me he was going ahead with my treatments for two months and then we would have another scan. He told me I may have to have a little radiation. We will have to wait and see. I asked him these question. "Am I going to survive this? Am I going to make it"? His answer was, "Yes You are. Your remission has been remarkable. Just hang on". No nausea.

July 9, 2004 - I went for a treatment. My while blood cell count and my red blood cell count was down a little. No nausea. I did not get sick. Food does not taste good and I have not eaten very much.

 July 16, 2004 - I had a treatment. My white blood cell count and my red blood cell count was up. Everything was O.K. No nausea. I did not get sick.

July 23, 2004 - I had a treatment. My white blood cell count was down a little. My red blood cell count was down slightly. Everything went real good. No nausea. I did not get sick.

August 25, 2004 - 7:35 A.M. I had a scan. At 1:30 P.M. I saw my doctor and got the report. He said everything looked very good. He saw no evidence of cancer. He also repeated a phrase he had used before. He said the remission had been remarkable. I had to say out loud, "Thank you Jesus". He said I would not have to have radiation. He said he will see me in three months for a follow-up.

I know I put a lot of faith in my doctor. But, I also know I serve a remarkable God who is above all. I have never asked the Lord, "Why?" about anything that I can remember. If I have, I have forgotten. I have now asked Him, "Why are you so good to me"? I know I certainly don't deserve any blessing He gives me. I also know He  suffered a horrible and painful beating that tore flesh from His back for me. I will not let that go unnoticed. And I accept that gift and apply it to my health needs.

I entitled my notes, "MY MIRACLE" from the beginning when the doctor first reported to me that I had cancer. I never felt fear. And when the second doctor said it had spread to my left shoulder and between my lungs, I still had no fear. God has truly been with me all the way. Thank you Jesus

 

By, HELEN LONG

 

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