Archive for October, 2008

Wound Vac Improvement!

The lady from Miracle Home Health Care was very careful with Dan.  First, the Dr. prescribed hydrocorto with acetamenaphen (sp?) – 10 mg tp be taken 30 minutes before the dressing was to be changed.  It helped, plus the lady knew what she was doing.  Dan had pain, but it was nothing compared to what was happening at the other place.

He was pretty groggy after that.  However, when Peter and Rie Vali brought our dinner tonight, they stayed to eat with us.  Dan was totally coherent and carried on a very normal conversation.  Later, near bedtime, he was so sleepy, his eyes were falling shut, and his words were a bit slurred from the meds.  
He has to walk very slowly, and carefully because the tape is so tight.  But he was very, very happy that the changing of the sponge in the wound went so much better.  Dan’s strength is returning.  The Dr. said he can drive as long as he is not groggy from the meds, and  lift what he feels like he can – don’t tell him that – he is a man from the Boyd Clan as well as the Crawford Clan! – he will lift the heaviest thing around.  He is looking good.  He is too slender, but the weight loss has stopped.  
He is not giving up.  He is cooperating with the vegan diet.  He is determined to beat that sarcoma. His personal physician told us that they had expected the sarcoma to return after they removed the first one in January.  This type of cancer is very bad.  So, Dan is all the more determined to keep his Ph balance such that cancer cannot grow.
“The Lord helps weak people to be strong.  He causes the people without power to become powerful . . . people that trust in the Lord become strong again like eagles that grow new feathers.  These people run without becoming weak.  These people walk without becoming tired.”  (Isaiah 40:29,31-ETRV). — Anne and Dan

October 31, 2008 at 5:00 am Leave a comment

Encouraging News About Dan

 We have some BETTER news – the more detailed biopsy which took longer came today.  Dan’s cancer is just a Level 2 (on a scale of 1 – 3), so it is a moderate cancer, identical to the first sarcoma Dan had in January.

The biopsy done during the surgery last week was a quick / not complete biopsy.  It diagnosed the cancer as a Level 3 – a very invasive, fast growing cancer.  This new report means we have more time to fight the cancer with the raw plants diet and guided imagery.

More GOOD news – Dan’s Ph level has been slightly alkaline for the last 3 days.  It has been scientifically demonstrated that cancer cannot survive in an alkaline body.  It takes a lot of work to prepare the raw vegan food plan, get Dan to drink 40 ounces of carrot juice daily, as well as the other things we are doing to rid his body of cancer. 

Friends from our home congregation as well as friends from Riverside in Coppell where we worshipped for years before moving to NRH are providing the right vegan foods, shopping for us, coming to help for several hours.  People on every continent are praying for us. Thank you for your prayers. We thank God for HIs goodness to us!  God is always good! — Dan and Anne

P.S. Psalm 71 was the Scripture given Dan on his birthday.  “…As for me I always have hope; I will praise you more and more….Since my youth, you have taught me, and to this day, I declare your marvelous deeds.  Even when I am old and grey, do not forsake me, O God till I declare your power to the next generation….you will restore my life again….”

October 30, 2008 at 4:49 am Leave a comment

Another Mixed Bag Day

Krista brought such a lovely meal today!  The salad was like a beautiful picture in a fancy food magazine.  The entire meal was like an exciting, yet peaceful symphony.  The sun was shining all day; the day was cool.  We even got out for awhile and ran a few errands. Dan has always carried my books for years.  As we were leaving the library, I commented, “Well, now I get to carry your books for awhile!”

Dan’s incision has been hurting since the sponges in his incision were changed yesterday.  He does not complain about the pain, but together we made arrangements for a good Home Health service, and an appointment for the surgeon to take a look at the incision Wednesday, 29 October.  The surgeon will put a temporary dressing on the incision.

The next day, a nurse will come to the house where we are staying, and prepare the wound vac properly. Dan will have pain medication so that the torture will stop.  (What he does complain about is that he is not supposed to lift heavy things or drive the car.  What’s that saying, “If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.”  Wishing does not make the incision heal any quicker.)  

Jesus says to all of you who are helping us in any way, “If anyone gives one of these precious ones a drink of cold water because he is My follower, I tell you the truth, that person will certainly not lose his reward,” Matthew 10:42.  God is remembering your prayers and other kindnesses.  We cannot fight this cancer by ourselves.  Thank you for helping light our path as we walk through this Dark Valley. — Anne and Dan

October 29, 2008 at 4:48 am Leave a comment

Angels Surround Us

Today an angel named Natasha helped us from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.  What a difference it made to have her here!  She made Dan’s carrot juice, helped me get lunch ready, took Dan to his Wound Vac sponge change, etc.  

Sad to say, even though Dan took a pain pill before the changing of the dressing inside the wound, it was a very painful experience.  He took another pain pill afterwards.  We are going to request that the Dr. arrange it so Dan does not suffer.  Several have written to tell us that they had wound vac care with pain meds that kept them from hurting.

The good news is that Dan had his Small Group Bible Study in Sfantu Gheorghe before he had to go get the dressing changed.  Because of Natasha’s help, I had time to rest after lunch, talk with Adolf, help Bogi, and Reka via Skype this afternoon.  This was a better day in many ways.  Thank you for your prayers asking God to heal Dan, stop the pain when the wound vac sponges are changed, and make Dan cancer free. When I asked God for a scripture for tonight, He gave me the entire chapter of Acts 10 about the conversion of Cornelius, the first Gentile to become an intentional follower of Jesus.  I wonder what message you receive if you read Acts 10.  — Anne and Dan

October 28, 2008 at 4:50 am 1 comment

Oh, What a Beautiful Day!

God blessed us with sunshine, a very uplifting worship service (singing with 2,000 people fills us with joy and peace), a nice visit with Jim when he brought the lovely meal Sally prepared for us, a phone call from Bob, and one from Dottie, and visits over Skype with 5 of some of our most favorite people who live far away.

What a day!  Thank you, God, for filling our cup today.  It had gotten pretty empty.  Today Dan’s Ph level was in the slightly alkaline area where it needs to be to defeat the cancer. We have hope!  — Anne and Dan

October 27, 2008 at 4:23 am 1 comment

The Grass in God’s Valley Is Always Green

God is leading us through the valley. Did you know that His valley is full of green grass? He is restoring our souls and our bodies. Dan is eating better, feeling better.  The rapid weight loss stopped 2 weeks ago.  Dan now weighs about 170 lbs. That is what he weighed from age 20 – 40 years.  The main difference between those years and now is that he had a handsome head of dark, almost black, hair on top of his head.  Now, he has a light sprinkling of gray hair across his head.  Scripture tells us that God loves us so much He knows how many hairs are on our head.  I’ll tell you what – it doesn’t take long to count Dan’s hairs!  

Rosemarie brought a big colorful veggie salad with red cabbage, cauliflower, red bell pepper, etc. and a large bowl of fruit salad that lasted us two days.  Since I did not have to cook dinner today, I had time to go look for a sweater.  I was surprised to find mostly cotton sweaters.  However, I searched until I found some nice tops to layer for warmth.  It was 28 C outside this afternoon, but cool inside the house. (Most of our winter clothes are in Sfantu Gheorghe.)

One thing we learned in the research on anti-cancer diets, is that cancer cannot survive in a body that has less than 10% protein in the daily diet. Tonight we figured out how many grams of protein (63.2 gm) he can have given that he weighs 170 lbs.  Each day, we learn a little bit more how to take good care of Dan.  Job 17:9, teaches us to hold onto God and He will make us strong. We are holding on tight! — Anne and Dan

October 26, 2008 at 4:46 am 1 comment

The Sun Came Out Today

After sinking so low yesterday, I cried out to God confessing my weakness and inability to do all the things that Dan needs.  Early this morning, Brenda phoned.  The first words out of her mouth were, “I am worried about you.”  (Her husband had major surgery a few years ago with a very long recovery period.  She understands what I am going through.) As I explained to her the challenges before me, she suggested we look into Home Health Care with the company that took care of her husband’s wound vac.  

Brenda is going to come over on her day off and take care of making the 40 ounces of organic carrot juice that Dan has to drink every day.  She already does most of my grocery shopping.  Natasha will be here Monday 10:00 – 15:00.  She can make Monday’s 40 ounces of carrot juice for Dan.  

When Judy D. phoned, she asked, “Is there anything I can do to help you?”  Yes! She is going to see about arranging helpers for our Friday afternoon, Oct. 31, move back to Dottie’s.  Dan is not allowed to lift anything heavier than 15 lbs.  That means he will be watching, or carrying very small boxes.  ; > )  One BIG help with lifting today – Ed and Charla dropped what they were doing on short notice, and carried the heavy metal single bed frame, and mattress from “our” van into Dottie’s and put it back where it belongs.  We are surrounded by angels!

Dan is doing well except for the changing the sponges in his wound.  It is an extremely painful experience, and he suffers for hours afterwards.  It’s interesting that Dan was given no after care instructions when he left the hospital.  Coming out of the fog, we are realizing that we have to be our own advocates and request information that used to be given.  

I never had time to buy a sweater…maybe tomorrow.  Dan and I both got our hair cut as part of taking care of ourselves, helping our mood improve.  We’re going to be okay.   “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea . . . The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress . . . Be still, and know that I am God . . . Psalm 46:1,2,7,10.”  

“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him . . . Wait for the Lord and keep his way . . . there is a future for the man of peace . . . The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord; he is their stronghold in times of trouble.  The Lord helps them and delivers them . . . because they take refuge in him. – Psalm 37”  — Anne and Dan

October 25, 2008 at 4:47 am Leave a comment

Life Is a Blur

Dan is doing well, praise God!  He gets up in the morning and with my help gets bathed and dressed. We eat our sauerkraut first thing.  A little later, we eat the Budwig Diet of organic low fat cottage cheese blended  with low lignan organic Flax Seed Oil and fruit.  Then he takes it easy for a couple of hours…dozing in the glider rocker in front of the TV.

I haven’t figured out how to keep to the rigid daily schedule of preparing 5 eight ounce glasses of fresh carrot juice, several servings of Super Greens in water, and his special Cellect vitamin and mineral powder mixed with organic fruit juice.  All of that has to all be worked in between meals.  We are truly grateful that friends from church are preparing organic dinners that meet Dan’s needs.

People keep encouraging me to take care of Anne.  I haven’t figured out how to do that if I’m going to take care of Dan, and all the household responsibilities.  Yesterday afternoon, I just let everything go and rested several hours.  Today, I kept pushing because there was and still is so much to do.  By 5 p.m., I could not function any longer.  My body and my mind were hurting.  Since I couldn’t do anything else, I took a rest.  It’s after 11 p.m. now, and I have two more hours of work to do.  BUT I’m going to bed.

Did you read Sherrie’s comment on last night’s blog?  She reminded me of some very helpful words from Jesus.  “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest . . . learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30).”  “The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, and He delivers them.  Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him (Psalm 34:7,8).”   I pray that God will help us remember these Truths, and that God will heal Dan.  This is a long, bumpy road we’re on, but God is our refuge. — Anne and Dan  

October 24, 2008 at 4:21 am 1 comment

Well, It Was a Day

Dan is amazingly strong for a man who had surgery two days ago. But last night the Wound Vac gave us some exciting moments.  The Alarm on the Wound Vac went off at 4:30 and 6:40 a.m this morning.  It was blocked, not draining.  Dan shifted, etc. and it began working okay at 4:45, but at 6:40 it stopped, started, stopped, started but never got the suction to where it was supposed to be.  There is a 2 hour window that it cannot work before it becomes an emergency. It was a stressful 2 + hours.  

We called the 800 number. The Help Desk man walked Dan through testing the machine. It was working.  Then we had to wait until 8:00 to call the Wound Vac office. They worked Dan in at 9 a.m.    The PT found the drain tube pressing against bare skin instead of the sponges.  Dan said, “The pain of adjusting the tube and repacking the wound with fresh sponges made me want to ‘climb’ the walls.”  But the good news is that so far it’s working OK.

Peggy, a friend from church prepared us a lovely meal. Since I didn’t have to spend 1.5 hours chopping raw veggies, I had time to wash 4 loads of clothes. Fall is here. It’s raining and turning cooler today – 20 C.  Will be like that the rest of the week.  Tomorrow I plan to go buy a sweater.  (I left my cool weather clothes in Romania.)

Dan rested most of the afternoon and evening. I even got to lie down and close my eyes for 1/2 hour. Dan is not bedfast.  He was out of bed except for his naps. Our mission now, with God’s help, is to get Dan strong and back on his feet so that we can follow wherever God chooses to lead us.  We hear a voice calling from across the Atlantic, across the Carpathian Mountains, from Transylvania. When I asked God for a short scripture for the blog tonight, twice my Bible opened to a map of the countries around the Black Sea. (Romania is on the Black Sea.)   We pray God will help us answer the call.  — Anne and Dan

October 23, 2008 at 5:43 am 1 comment

Mixed Emotions

I am so tired I can barely think.  But we are okay, really we are.  Dan has a Wound Vac about 5″ X 8″ with a strap that he wears on his shoulder like a woman’s purse.  It is attached to a plastic tube that enters his body through the 2″ (5.5 cm) incision. Tape holds the tube in his abdomen.  We will go every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to get new sponges put in the wound at the North Richland HIlls Wound Care Center near North Hills Hospital. 

What Kara said tonight is exactly where we are right now.  “I guess you must be dealing with such a mix of emotions right now.  We’ll keep praying.  Now is a time for being refined by fire and for withstanding a very strong test of faith.”

Vicki sent this very uplifting message, “I thought of you both when I read this on my e-mail today! –”

“What the Lord Is Saying Today” 
“October 21, 2008. My hand is upon you in good times and bad, in fires and floods. Your tenacity and endurance have caught My attention. In difficult times you have consistently continued to the finish line. When sickness has come for a visit, you cling to healing until the victory. Many times you could have whined like others but instead you found a way in your heart to give Me thanks while believing for the best. In the end, over and over again, you have prevailed over your enemies because you truly believe they are also My enemies and that I will prevail over them. This too has blessed Me to see you, My child, be the overcomer of each assault. Now you face the biggest battle of all. You will prevail! 
Isaiah 43:2 “When you go through the sea, I am with you. When you go through rivers, they will not sweep you away. When you walk through fire, you will not be burned, and the flames will not harm you.” Ras Robinson”
We are going through the fire.  As long as we hold on tight to God’s hand, we will not be burned! — Anne and Dan

October 22, 2008 at 3:21 am Leave a comment

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October 2008