Monday, January 7, 2008

One Year Mark

Dear Family & Friends,

I wanted to take a minute to thank each of you for all of the support that you have extended to our family over the past year. Tomorrow marks the day that Brad went in for his first surgery last year.

It has been an incredibly difficult year for us and I don't know how we would have made it through without your help. You carried us through a time we could not have possibly navigated on our own. We feel so grateful for your support: the calls, the home visits, the hospital visits, the dinners (which were too numerous to count), the cards, the gifts, and of course the endless prayers. Thank you for all of the ways you showed love and kindness to our family. We are so blessed to have each of you in our lives.

I have been meaning to send an update on Brad for some time and the lack of conclusive information has kept me from it. I kept waiting, thinking that we would know something several months of waiting have passed and we still are uncertain.

In mid-October, Brad went in for a routine follow-up CT scan on his chest. Doctors found a few small spots on his lungs at that time but were not willing to commit to what they thought the spots might be. Brad's orthapedic oncologist told us at that point that he wanted to refer us to see a medical oncologist. Being that Brad's problem at this point could possibly be systemic, we chose to go into MD Anderson to meet with Dr. Bob Benjamin (a doctor who had been referred to us by several other oncologists).

In the first part of November we had an appointment with Dr. Benjamin who looked at Brad's scans. Dr. B said he was uncertain as to what he thought they were and ordered other x-rays and scans to be done. After looking at the 2nd scans, he was still unwilling to commit to any answers about the spots but they did notice that Brad had develped bi-lateral pnemonia.

Since that time we have been waiting. Brad unfortunately has been suffering from a lot of chest congestion/coughing from the pnemonia which I am still not convinced that he has recovered completely from. This past weekend he threw he back out and has been in bed trying to recover from that. The coughing and the back pain has kept him from being able to rest well at night. I am asking that we pray Brad recovers quickly from his recent health setbacks. He feels like his body is just not keeping up with him right now and I know that he is ready to get over the illness & ready to rid himself of the back pain.

I would also like to ask for a special prayer for Brad's parents....they have both been ill recently too (especially his mother) and I know that the stress of Brad's health has kept them from taking good care of themselves. Our next scheduled appointment to have another CT scan run is January 23rd and we follow up to see the doctor the next morning (24th).

We are praying for answers so that we may move forward from this point. Thank you again for all of your prayers.

We love you all,

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