First, we want to say thank you to everyone who has been walking beside us since this crazy journey began 2 weeks ago. We cannot say thank you enough for all of the prayers, love and light that we have been showered in. We are continuously wrapped in the comfort of the Lord, so we can feel all of the prayers you’re sending up on our behalf. We want to thank you for your patience as we continue to learn more. As we continue to process. And as we continue to move towards acceptance.
Along with saying thank you, we also want to update you.
We were sent home last Thursday, just 2 days after surgery. And we landed right back on our beloved 4 South (Neuroscience floor at Butterworth) on Sunday afternoon; and continue to wait patiently to return home. Ryan has been having seizures since Sunday. Thankfully they are small, and modern medicine is AMAZING and is helping to control them but we are in a waiting game as they dial in the exact concoction to get his brain waves back to normal.
Since we’ve been here we have met with the Neuro-oncology team who looked at the pathology of the tumor. They told us that Ryan’s tumor is what they call a Grade II Glioma. Specifically a Diffuse Astrocytoma. This means cancer. Which is a really hard word to hear. But there is some light in the darkness. Grade II is best case. And some testing revealed that Ryan is IDH Mutant (I cannot tell you what this means specifically) but research has shown that those with this mutation respond better to treatment. So we keep the faith and have hope for the future.
We daily experience a rollercoaster of emotions as we slowly come to terms with this diagnosis. But we take comfort in the knowledge that we serve a Big God, and that He has known about this since the beginning. We take comfort in the amazing team who is fighting for us. and we take comfort in our weakness; that in our weakness He is strong. While we grieve at this diagnosis we find hope and joy knowing that our life has new purpose, that God has a plan and that He has chosen us as His vessels.
We haven’t had a formal sit-down with our Oncology team yet, but the outline that they presented us with is intense. We are wanting to be aggressive up front with treatment in order to give Ryan the most time before the tumor grows back. Because it will grow back. So after he recovers from surgery (4 weeks) we are planning to do a 6 week course of treatment that includes chemo and radiation. Which would be followed by a 4 week break. After that we will be doing another 6 months of chemo.
We take it day by day, and know that our God is here. That He suffers with us. We are in the valley right now, but the Lord is here, beauty is here.
Even here, grace abounds and life can still be beautiful. — Morgan Harper Nichols