June 29, 2012
So do not fear, for I am with you
Do not be dismayed, for I am your God
I will strengthen you and help you
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand
|Fellow cancer-battling family|
|Madeleine during chemo with therapy dog|
We also had a visit from a volunteer who does “pet therapy” every week here at the hospital. She brought her specially-trained dog (among other things, these dogs are required to be bathed the morning of their hospital visit), and the dog snuggled right in and fell asleep after a while as Madeleine was petting her. As you many of you know, Madeleine misses her own pets, and is far from home, so this is especially appreciated.
Today, we were blessed to have more nurses who gave spiritual encouragement along with their excellent, caring nursing. Our nurse for the daytime hours encouraged her with many things, among them saying, "I want you to think about how you would never know God as your Healer unless you had the need to be healed. He wants you to know Him as your Healer." Then the evening nurse came and encouraged her similarly saying that this is a good time to get closer to God, and to use the quiet time and the freedom from responsibilities toward that purpose.
This has definitely been a different visit so far with all the encouragement that we have gotten. The physical challenges of the chemo are definitely there -- tonight Madeleine had a 103+ fever, along with the shakes, and had to have ice packs in her armpits and elsewhere --- but there is more of a spiritual nurturing that is going on as well that is absolutely amazing to watch. There is a richness in the people who are here alongside her (and us), and that richness is spilling over and touching us.
When she isn't petting dogs, talking with nurses and others, having her vitals checked and more medications added, texting, or walking around with her ever-present IV pole, Madeleine has been passing the time by playing "Words with Friends" with her mom (the joke is that her mom & aunt have to work together, and Madeleine has to be on heavy medication, in order for her mom to win!). Time for bed - thanks for your prayers and messages - we appreciate all of you.