Scans and the plan

What a week! Scott and I started the week out with the Great Darke Co. Fair, which is the only way to start off a week. If you’ve never been, you need to find a way to go. It’s in his hometown of Greenville, OH and it’s nothing short of wonderful. I got pushed in a wheelchair along with all the old ladies, and got to eat all the great fair food.

Tuesday rolled around and that meant scans. I got a CT scan, and we found out yesterday at our chemo appointment that the tumor in my abdomen has grown more than they’d like to see, but the one on my lung has stayed the same, which is good. We were expecting this, although I have been feeling “good” lately so we wouldn’t have been surprised if there were no growth either. I say “good” because I have been feeling “good” lately, but my good is not the same as your average person. My good usually means I still move super slowly and can’t walk very far without tuckering out, along with stomach discomfort.

So, yesterday we did not get our regularly planned chemo, but moved on to the next treatment plan, which involves immunotherapy. So we will get Pembrolizumab IV once every 21 days, and I believe that will be an overnight inpatient in order to get it approved by insurance. This is an immunotherapy used a lot in melanoma and lung cancers. There are a few hurdles to why we don’t feel great about this drug in my case, but it has been used in random tumors before and done really well. It’s never been tested with my type of tumor, so I’m hoping mine will be one it works well with. So a prayer request would be that my body would find a reason for this drug to target my cancer cells. The second immunotherapy med I will get, we started yesterday. That is Azacitidine, which is a subQ injection in the skin for 7 days then off for 28 days. This drug will wake up cells my body hasn’t used since it was an embryo  in hopes that my body will recognize my tumor as foreign. The Azacitidine hopefully will act as an enhancer to the Pembrolizumab. So we will give this combo a few months to do it’s thing and then scan to see what is happening. The goal of these meds isn’t for the tumor to stay the same, but to shrink. So pray for that.

We also found out yesterday that when my short term disability turns into long-term, I lose my status as employee, which means I lose my insurance. This is a BIG DEAL. That switch happens Sept 29. We just finished our out of pocket costs for this cycle (july-june), so it’s especially sad to have to figure out what to do about insurance. We’re looking into everything. I would even do paperwork at home to stay an employee if they’d let me. I don’t know what we’ll do and I’m pretty sure Scott is stressed, but I do know that God will take care of it. He always does. So I’m resting in that.

The really great thing about yesterday is after such a crazy day full of stressful news, I got to go straight to a fancy spa with a sweet co-worker to get fancy agave nectar pedicures. One of the care managers at work gave my co-worker a gift card for us two to go get pampered, and it was absolutely the most perfect thing that could have happened. I haven’t had a pedicure in 15 years I’m pretty sure, and let me tell you, I love them. This place (The Woodhouse Day Spa in Kenwood), was so fancy. I walked in and they offered me a drink and took me to a relaxation room while I waited for Annie. Then we went back to the pedicure room where I got to sit in a fancy massage chair with warm things around my neck and my feet in warm water. I wasn’t even too ticklish! Oh man. It was perfection. Thank you so so so much for that amazing generosity (you know who you are):)

In other news, girl trip to Harry Potter world is up and running smoothly for now. We have 15 girls going, so watch out, Orlando. Please be praying that I’ll still feel good when that rolls around at the end of September.

Scott and I are taking a day at a time over here, so we’re doing pretty good. God’s word keeps proving to be exactly what I need to hear when I need to hear it. It’s funny, Scott can tell the days I spend time with Jesus in the morning versus the days I don’t (embarrassed money emoji would go here). This morning was really sweet when I was reading 2 Corinthians. In 1:9-10 it says, “Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again. You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many.” The paragraph right before it was all about God’s comfort for us in our trials. The word of God is literally alive and active, and I am so thankful for that. He always gives me what I need when I show up to listen.

Thats about it over here. So to recap, we need prayer that these new immunotherapy drugs would work against this tumor, as well as for insurance to work out somehow (preferably without Scott having to get a job that won’t allow him to be with me). And as always for healing. Whether that be through these drugs or straight up God, we’ll take whatever. But mostly that our eyes would be set on Jesus. We love you all! Thanks for following along and for praying.

by Jenna

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DeannaOctober 4, 2016 - 2:22 pm


You were a light in this world. Though I did not really know you, my kids, especially Anna, did, and they loved you so much. And I have had the pleasure of knowing Scott through volunteerism and he is the sweetest man.

This world will miss you Jenna. Yes, this WORLD. You were a pure light for Young Life, and for your husband, and you will continue to be a pure light for us all, shining bright in the heavens.

Peace Jenna, to you, to Scott, and to the community that will miss you terribly, but who will rejoice in having had you in their lives at all.

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