Transplant Day plus 227

Hampton Inn, Boston

‘Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon His name, make known His deeds among the people.’ 1 Chronicles 16:8

This week we have much to give the Lord thanks for. Here are some of the reasons why.

We left Glens Falls yesterday in bright sunshine but freezing temperatures fully expecting to see snow as we drove east. But thankfully the day stayed clear and dry as today has been, along with the coldest below freezing temperatures for 2 years… we hope tomorrow’s drive home will also be dry and clear.

We are thankful again to be able to stay here at the Hampton Inn in Boston as there was no room at the Hope Lodge… thankfully getting a hospital discount on the normal room rate.

We were thankful today that Noel’s blood work was stable, much the same as last week and although we patiently wait to see higher numbers we are happy – as is Dr. Soiffer – that for now the results stay stable. This being so, and as Noel has not needed any transfusions for the last couple of months, we give thanks that today Noel’s Hickman line was removed… this only involved a little discomfort and the wound should heal quickly. After over 7 months of daily flushing the lines to prevent clotting and covering the site with ‘press and seal’ before Noel showered, I am happy for both of us to no longer be doing this ‘caregiver’ task.

This weeks blood results were almost exactly the same as two weeks ago.

Red Blood cells, 2.66 — Two weeks ago, 2.68 — Normal, 4.2-5.6
White Blood cells, 3.4 — Two weeks ago, 3.4 — Normal, 3.8-9.2
Platelets, 56 — Two weeks ago, 58 — Normal, 155-410

We are thankful Noel’s liver and kidney levels were also much the same. The toxicity levels seem to be affected by the anti-rejection drugs he takes and so should eventually return to normal.

We are thankful that Dr. Soiffer seeing the GVHD is still slowly improving, again lowered the steroid dose… Noel has put on some weight because of the steroids and also has a ’round face look’ typical of those on steroids and we are thankful this should eventually go away after he comes off them.

We are thankful that, although Noel’s progress is still slow, Dr. Soiffer confirmed what Amy said 2 weeks ago. Appointments can now be spaced 3 weeks apart so the next one is planned for Wednesday, February 13th. (Five years to the day when Charlotte has her port inserted for her cancer treatments).

Noel eats an Angus Bacon Cheeze BurgerNoel was thankful that, whilst waiting to hear this afternoon’s appointment time for his Hickman removal, he was able to have lunch of a freshly cooked Angus Burger with bacon and cheese. This was his first meal not cooked by me since May last year!! He is not yet cleared to eat normal ‘take out’ food or to eat in restaurants but we found a quiet place to sit, away from others, and the chef at the grill at the Dana-Farber restaurant was willing to cook the burger fresh for Noel. Normally during the busy lunch time they are pre-cooked and kept warm – a big “no, no” for the food Noel eats.

  • We are thankful even with coughs and colds in the family we have stayed well.
  • We are thankful that we are able to walk for exercise at the Glens Falls Civic Center away from crowds and in a warm and dry environment.
  • We are thankful for seeing our grandchildren Eve and Will in England in real time via the computer and have some one on one interaction with them.
  • We are thankful for the time we can spend with Charlotte and Lucy.
  • We are thankful for Father Dave bringing us the Reserved Sacrament each week.
  • We have been thankful for Bishop Dan Herzog’s ministry as interim priest-in-charge at the church we attend, but haven’t set foot inside for over 7 months. He and his wife, Carol, have visited us numerous times, bringing Communion when Fr. Dave could not come.
  • We are thankful for phone calls and emails and even Facebook that keeps us in contact with friends.

Above all, it is to the Lord we are most thankful and we know that all things work for the good for those who love Him… and we are grateful for so many answered prayers and blessing. Please give thanks with us.

Please continue to pray as before for us on this journey to full health.

  • For Noel’s new donor bone marrow to make good strong blood cells.
  • For the resources to cover all the ongoing medical and drug costs.
  • For patience as we spend more time at home but still with many restrictions.
  • For our families here and in England.
  • For safe traveling in winter conditions.

With love and prayers for you all. Thank you for reading our updates and praying for us. Your encouragement to us has been amazing over the last few months… God Bless you.