It’s been about a week and a half now since Jeff finished radiation. The oncologists’ office called to say that he would be starting chemotherapy on the 20th of this month.
I still don’t know much about the treatment plan. And I know basically nothing about this type of recurrence. There’s nothing at the library on it, and even the specialists could only find three published studies in their medical journals, none of which suggested a clear treatment plan. When the people who are supposed to know this stuff tell you they don’t know yet how many treatments we are going to do, it is a little disconcerting.
I know their goal is to knock out this tumor before the cancer cells find their way back to the bone marrow where leukemia usually takes hold. (I’m still really fuzzy on how they ended up in his brain in the first place.) Since the drug will not cross the blood-brain barrier, these chemo treatments will be injected through a catheter into Jeff’s spine. (Think epidural and you’ve got the basic idea.) The cerebrospinal fluid will circulate the drug around the brain and the optic nerves where Jeff’s tumor is, killing off any cells that the radiation may have missed.
You probably have even more questions. Questions don’t scare me, so if you ever want more explanation, just ask. I’ll do my best to clarify. Questions foster learning. I ask them all the time.
When it comes to questioning God, you can be sure I have. But not, perhaps, in the way you might imagine. My questions are not angry or full of self-righteousness--though I can understand when people do that. And I do wonder “Why him?” and “Do we really need to do this again?” But really my questions are more along this line: whispering to Him that “I just don’t understand.”
Asking: “How will we do this?”
and: “Was there some lesson we failed to learn
the last time?”
My husband is a godly man, and I can think of plenty of reasons why he does not deserve this. And if God used cancer as a way to punish sin, then I would feel justified asking those angry questions. But the truth is, we live in a world marred by sin, the effects of which are violence, death, and disease. Those were not part of God’s perfect plan for this world or for us, but those were the consequences when sin entered the world. Cancer doesn’t care if you are a Christian or not, it just happens.
So if cancer wasn’t God’s plan, why does he allow it? Why doesn’t God just heal people right away? Those are good questions, too. I don’t know why. But I do know that He promises to work it out for good, and for His glory. Somehow, these experiences are part of a plan that God is working out to make something good. And for today, just knowing that is enough.
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28