Friday, September 27, 2013

Cover Them

Please join me in covering Patrick & Emily with prayer this weekend as Patrick prepares to begin his IV chemotherapy infusions this Monday.

This Monday (10/30/13) Patrick will have his first of several (4 to 6, if memory serves) rounds of IV chemotherapy.  Each infusion will take place locally, at the "Hope Center" in Waynesboro, VA and will last 2-3 hours (outpatient).  During the weeks between IV chemo, Patrick will take oral chemotherapy as well.

Please lift the Shaws up this weekend as they prepare to embark on this chapter of their story next week.  Pray for strength and sound body for Patrick.  Pray for minimal and manageable side effects from this new type of chemotherapy as well.  Additionally, please lift up Emily as his "care giver" and closest support person.  Pray for her endurance, spirit, and sound mind.

Pray for them.
Hug them.
Love on them!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Patrick Is Home

Thank you to everyone who has faithfully lifted Patrick and Emily up in prayer.  Yesterday, around 3pm, Patrick was discharged home from UVA hospital (two days earlier than expected).  Turns out ... he had been virtually nausea free and his ostomy output was good ... so his doctors thought he was prepared to go home.  Both Emily and Patrick were glad to be back in the comfort of their own home where they could get uninterrupted sleep and a sense of normalcy again.

I spoke with Emily today, and she said Patrick is doing well.  His pain is under control, but he is still very tired and weak (understandably).  Although he is hungry, Emily said Patrick is having a difficult time eating.  She thinks this is partially physiological (body) ... but also partially psychological (mind).  As in:  Patrick is a bit afraid to eat again after his unexpected bowel obstruction.  He is "taking it a day at a time," eating the foods that appeal the most to him, and trying to rest and regain his strength.

This recent hospital stay was unexpected and tiresome for the Shaws.  Please pray God's protection over Patrick's body and over both of their spirits.  Additionally, prayers are needed for Patrick to regain his desire to eat so that he may increase his strength and stamina.

Pray on, Prayer Warriors!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Bowel Obstruction

I would like to ask everyone reading this blog to stop what they are doing and lift Patrick and Emily up in prayer. 

Last night, Patrick awoke in the middle of the night with severe stomach/intestinal cramping and nausea and vomiting.  After awhile, Emily drove him to the ER.  There, it was determined that Patrick had a bowel obstruction.  A nasogastric tube (NG tube) was placed in Patrick's nose and run down into his stomach. This is used to remove stomach acid (among other things) and help relieve nausea and vomiting.  Patrick was then sent to UVA and admitted to the hospital as an in-patient around 5:45am. 

I have texted with Emily a little today.  Both of them are very tired. Patrick is still feeling poorly as well.  He is awaiting an X-ray to examine the placement of his NG tube.  At this time, the Shaws were told that "watching and waiting" is the plan for Patrick's bowel obstruction.  

Please remember them in your prayers.  

Friday, September 6, 2013

Post-Surgery Updates!!!

I spoke with Emily today about Patrick's first post-surgery update. 


First, the original tumor size was 7cm. The tumor that was removed during the surgery (post chemo and radiation) was, at most, 3.7cm. Way to go prayer warriors!  Patrick's tumor shrunk nearly half its size. 

Even more exciting: Patrick's CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen) level ... a measurement used to determine how widespread cancer is within the body AND how well it is responding to medical intervention) was dramatically reduced!

Prior to treatment:  CEA was 35.3 (less than 5 is normal)
This week:  CEA was 0.9

How incredible is that?!?  Tonight is a night of praise!


Now what?  Here is the current treatment plan for Patrick:

Patrick will begin IV chemo two weeks from today (9/6/13). These treatments will be done in an outpatient infusion center every 3 weeks ... And will last 2-3 hours each time. 

Between IV chemo infusions, the first two weeks Patrick will take daily oral chemo.  He will then have one week off before the next IV chemo infusion. 

Patrick will complete 4-6 of these 3-week cycles. 

*** continue following for more updates ***

Patrick's Sermon

This past weekend I had the pleasure of spending some one-on-two time with Patrick and Emily.  Even amongst the adjustments, challenges, and celebrations of Patrick's journey ... They still prove to be unconditional friends. 

Patrick asked me to share a very special link (and message) with those of you who are following this blog.  Below is a link to Patrick's church's web page, specifically to the sermon Patrick gave right BEFORE his tumor removal surgery. 

If you click the link, this page will redirect you to the podcast page.  For that page, you can click on the PLAY button (traditional arrow button) and listen to Patrick's words. The complete sermon is approximately 1 hour long. Enjoy!!!

*** if the direct link does not work, please copy and paste it into your web browser ***

Here is the link: