Transplant Day plus 65

Thank you Lord for your mercies, your blessings and for giving us patience in this journey of slow progress. Please don’t let disappointments capture our minds but help us to have a positive perspective and to be happy as we look at what progress is being made.

We arrived back in Boston yesterday evening and are staying at the Hope Lodge again. There has been quite a turn over of guests, so many new faces and names to get to know.

Today’s appointment at the Dana Faber Cancer Institute was with Amy Joyce, Dr Soiffer’s Nurse Practitioner. We have a good relationship with her and she always seems genuinely interested in our lives as well as Noel ‘s health.

Noel has been feeling well, although still having some of the same physical problems that have plagued him these last few weeks. But he is able to cope with them. He even told me yesterday he felt really energized, for a short time anyway! As he still gets fatigued.

Today’s blood test results were a little disappointing as Noel’s progress is still very slow but there was encouragement that they had not dropped lower (except the RBC but only by a tiny fraction.) This was a blessing as they were all above the level for receiving infusions of blood products. So all he needed was his dressing and line caps changed. Noel is looking forward to the day he can have the Hickman line removed. That will be when the doctors feel his levels have risen and he has passed the period of time when he would need transfusions.

Today’s results.
Red Cells RBC — 2.86, Last week’s 2.87, Normal 4.2-5.6
White Cells WBC — 2.4, Last week’s 2.1, Normal 3.8-9.2
Platelets — 40, Last week’s 36, Normal over 155

His liver and kidney toxicity levels are still being watched carefully and at next weeks appointment they may decided to further reduce the anti-rejection drugs.

Noel is only 5 weeks away from the 100 day mark. This is when normally it has been found that with most patients the anti-rejection drugs can be reduced even further. It is around this time that the donor’s stem cells should have become really well established and Noel’s bone marrow should be producing healthy red and white blood cells and platelets. It is expected by then Noel’s clinic appointments will have been moved to every other week and then eventually to monthly.

Noel asked when he could expect his lifestyle to return to being more normal. Amy said it was usual for transplant patients to be able to return to work after around 9 to 12 months. But when he asked if he would be able to attend meetings with groups of people by October or November, Amy said she thought it most unlikely but agreed to review the situation nearer the time.

Noel is a typical A type personality as well as he and his donor having A Positive blood!

He would like things to be moving faster and to be able to get back to his ministry, working with Chaplains and Veterans, something he has a passion for and he so loves. He is beginning to feel energized enough to talk for short periods of time on the phone and to be involved in ministering to people over the phone. He does have better energy levels but still gets fatigued and ‘ hits a wall’ if he does too much. But I am keeping a close eye on him to make sure he does not do too much as it is still early days.

Other news from our 4 days back home in Glens Falls:

Noel ‘s appointment with the Heart Specialist went well and Noel does not have to see him again. PTL…his heart is healthy. Even so, he remains under the watchful eye of a local Glens Falls cardiologist and will have his next 6-monthly visit to him in November.

On Saturday we celebrated Lucinda Violet’s, aka Lucy, second birthday. She was pleased with her presents and enjoyed blowing out her candles. We give great thanks to the Lord for her. Her birth has it’s own miracle story to tell and she is a blessing to us all.

On Sunday we had a couple of short visits from church friends. It is always nice to catch up with what other folk are doing and to pray for them.

Noel had his fortnightly appointment at the CR Wood Cancer Center in Glens Falls and Dr GG was so thrilled with the fact that his spleen has shrunk to being normal size again. She was pleased to see us and hear of the progress Noel is making.

So as we Praise the Lord we can both say ” It is well with my soul” and we do see His hand in Noel ‘s recovery and see his provisions for us daily.

Thank you for your love, your encouragement, your support and for following these updates. Please forgive us for not replying to everyone personally.

Please keep us in mind as you pray because God is answering your prayers. And we praise him for our many blessings daily.

Please continue to pray:

  • For a steady rise in all Noel’s blood levels.
  • For continued well being and energy levels.
  • For continued patience during this slow journey back to full strength and health.
  • Not to be frustrated or disappointed; and to turn negative thoughts to positive ones.
  • For continued ability to minister to others even if not being able to be with them.
  • For the Lord to continue to provide for our needs.
  • For the time spent with Charlotte and Lucy to be quality time if not quantity time and for continued safety as we travel back and forth.

God works for the good of all those who love Him, God Bless you all.

PS: As the Internet connection was still not working at the Hope Lodge I am posting this from our home in Glens Falls on Thursday evening.