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Monday, July 5, 2010

Back in Hospital for round Two ( Entry 14)

July 5th

I had hoped to be able to preside at the Eucharist yesterday morning, but the morning found me with a considerable amount of pain in my throat.
The (sad, but wise) decision was to stay home and rest some more.

By mid afternoon I was feeling much better,and enjoyed a cup of tea at our dining room table. One pleasant thing about sitting at the table in our dining room is you can see the back of the church building. I found my self looking at the church and parking lot ,thinking about the Church - that is (of course you know) the people that make up the Sunday Congregation AND the people who make up our Church family overall.

So important to remember how many strides we have made in moving from congregation to Community!
I do long to be with you in a physical Sunday Morning Worship sense, but I also want you to know that I am more than thankful for the love we share and the spiritual connection that God has bound and blessed us with through the Holy Spirit,and our choice to be authentic followers of Jesus.
The acts of kindness, gifts, cards and messages from people all around the province is to say the least, overwhelming. The power of authentic love is incredible, humbling, healing. I receive it with gratitude and thanksgiving. I feel safe because of it!
Yesterday,following morning worship the people of St. Martins held a brunch fellowship. Unknown to me until very recently, this event was a fundraiser for our family. Again, all Karen, my girls and myself I can do is say Thank You. The gifts of money, another, tangible expression of love will be used to defray some of our medical expenses not covered by insurance. I am quickly learning that Cancer is not only a painful,, devastating attack on Body and Soul ,it is also expensive to deal with. The gifts of food,blankets,prayer shawl, email,cards letters and "Smoothies", (thanks Jared!) combined with love and prayer has transformed my thoughts , lifting my spirits more than I can effectively communicate. God working, through the Church is able to so much more than we can ask or imagine. I bless Him,for your hands and hearts.

It is now Monday evening and I am back in hospital. Karen is back and forth like always. This evening she is helping a friend get ready for her wedding which will be this weekend.

Its been a quiet night - almost like a benediction upon what has been a long and trying day.
I receive your blessing Lord ,and ask that it be shared greatly with my friends and family.

The Day
While every person I have spoken to, or had interaction with today ,has been a blessing this day has been filled with reminders of my mortality and weakness. Earlier today I received the call I was waiting for. I was to come to the hospital ,register and be prepared for surgery - one more procedure to help me win this fight. I am thankful for Dr. St. Croix. Her natural compassion,skill and warmth have been a blessing to many,including your's truly.
Because I have been losing weight ,Dr. St. Croix suggested a feeding tube to make sure that my body receives the nutrients to get through the radical ups and downs of Chemotherapy and the upcoming Radiation treatments. I think in total I have lost over 40 lbs. It was a bit of a blow, because I thought I was doing fairly well with my eating!

You all know how much I love to eat with you!

My daughter Lacey and Granddaughter Delilah were here for a few days with us. A wonderful blessing! Today they left to go home.
I confess that I cried after Lacey and Delilah left today. Not for long, but long enough to let out some of the sadness and worry I have been feeling lately. Whenever my girls visit annd leave,I feel a bit sad. I love having them around,and when they are not,I look forward to hearing their voices everyday. Lately I have been a bit more emotional.
You know me and tears...If I go to the post office with a friend and they don't get any mail,i'll cry for them!

I was blessed by Sarah’s visit tonight. Sarah is one of the nurses here . We met when I was in for my first treatment and are quickly becoming friends. She was working on the other unit tonight and when her shift was over she dropped by for a visit and to offer encouragement. All of the nursing staff here are fantastic and caring people!

So here I am
- bald , skinny as a rake, needing help to eat, missing my girls, missing the Church, back in the hospital for another week because my white blood cells were too low for the doctor to install a port. (my white blood cells are up now, but the doctor is on holiday) ,knowing that the treatment I begin tomorrow will make me ill again, and yet......

I promise you, I lift up my heart in thanksgiving and communion with those who love and care. What an influence Jesus has ! Have a blessed evening everyone, I am determined to get better! Tomorrow I have another story of God’s blessings and friendship to share with you.


Anonymous said...

Dear Rev. John, I say a prayer everyday so God can help you get through this journey he has chosen for you...you are a strong indiviual and I am sure things will get better. I will always remember how you were there for me when I needed you...even as a new member of your parish...you didn't turn me away....I am learning everyday that I am on a new journey in my life just like you...and we will both together as separte individuals will walk with jesus in our lives...Thank you for guiding me I know I am on the right path to freedom....Cheers to you my new friend, May God stand by your side and help ease the pain in your body and in your heart...Colette

Sarah Holmes said...

Rev John, taking the time to thank everyone is a daunting task at times isn't it. I'm honored to be included in the list, especially considering what a pleasure and joy it is to visit with you! I always leave feeling encouraged by you! I'm not happy with what you're going through, but I am certainly happy to point out some good that has come of it! That is our friendship! I'm blessed! And I know you are blessing my co-workers as well who meet you and see such a friendly, patient person in the midst of your great trial! I have never met anyone before who so closely emanates the likeness of Jesus Christ. God bless you! And I'm so thankful my prayers were answered about those 2 suspicious spots! Oh and I think you look great with your head shaved! See you soon! Nurse Sarah :)