Thursday, August 18, 2011

Give thanks ....

Two friends have had surgery this summer because of practically non-existent circulation into their legs and feet.

I've written about R before.  He is 80, had surgery in early summer involving a variety of magical things that medicine can go these days to correct circulation blockages in the extremities.  Now he is learning to live with a built-in defibrillator.  He has other heart issues, but he is living independently in his own home with regular visits from the Visiting Nurse, the Physical Therapist and the Occupational Therapist.

Another friend, G, had a similar surgery on Monday.  He is 20 years younger than R.  He has had other surgeries over the last 12 or so years for circulatory issues.  This time he waited just a bit too long.  In addition to the steps taken to improve his circulation, he lost seven toes and probably 20% of one foot.  His recovery will be long and hard.  His wife says they can take only one day at a time, and are thankful for each day.

On the other hand, there is M.  After a mammogram in late July, followed almost immediately by an MRI and biopsy, she had a lumpectomy last week.  Her cancer was confined to a single tumor which had not spread even to the walls of the lymph node where it was growing.  Cancer has not been detected anywhere else in her body, even with all the fancy diagnostic tools now available.  Her cancer is of a type that normally responds well to hormone therapy, a treatment technique that was so new when Ray was in treatment that you almost never heard or read about it.  M is already back at work.  Except for hormones and some "insurance" radiation therapy, her treatment is done.

And D, an elderly aunt who is in the end stage of colon cancer.  This photo shows D with my father in Nov 2007.  D's granddaughter writes that her life expectancy is now weeks, perhaps days.  Long-dead family and friends have been visiting her in her dreams for the last decade or so, something she finds supportive.   D is too weak to sit up to read, too weak even to hold a letter.  She has turned to prayer for peace of mind.  

Four people, four very different outcomes for four life-threatening conditions.   Send them positive energy in whatever form you use.

Give thanks for at least one person who makes a difference in your life.

Don't forget to pray ....

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