11-18-09 Jordan Update

Got a little more info from Tim tonight, so read on…

First, Jordan is really doing well.  He’s pooping really consistently and generally continues to seem like himself.  So, praises.  Even better?  His blast percentage was taken again today – and it’s a 1.  ONE.  The number right above zero.  It was a 67.  Then 16.  Now 1.  PRAISES.

But tomorrow, it has to be a zero.  Tomorrow is the big day.  In the morning, they’re going to put him under, extract bone marrow, and do a chemo session.  Then he’ll go back to his room to recover.  Once he’s fully recovered, they’re going to release him to go home.

The test results on the bone marrow will come in later, maybe tomorrow evening, maybe Friday.  And the numbers need to be zero.  Jordan needs to be cancer free.  Period.

And he needs to stay cancer free for another 3 years.  Period.

So, let’s pray.

  • Jordan’s blood pressure is now reading just a little bit low.  Nothing too concerning, but pray that he just evens right out and stays put.
  • Pray that in the next 12 hours, Jordan’s white blood cell count and blast percentage show ZERO signs of cancer.  He’s close.  Let’s pray him all the way.
  • Pray that Jordan recover quickly and easily from the anesthesia tomorrow, and suffer no ill side effects.
  • Pray that the Shahbaz household is prepared for Jordan’s arrival on a couple of fronts.  Firstly, that Cedar, Jeremiah, and Jonah would all have a special measure of selflessness, grace and tenderness toward Jordan, and somehow understand his special needs.  Secondly, that Jordan would miraculously be protected (over the next 3 years) from bumps and bruises, germs and infections, etc.  Thirdly, that all the adults caring for Jordan would supernaturally have peace, strength and wisdom – to deal with the schedule and the special needs, to know when to lavish attention and when to discipline, to know when Jordan is okay at home or if he needs special medical attention, to know how to protect Jordan while giving him normalcy and stability and just the right amount of freedom, and to know how to take care of themselves.  These are not small requests.  Fortunately, our God is not small.
  • The next week or so would, under normal circumstances, be the time that Jordan really begins to feel the effects of the chemotherapy.  Some of the side effects include hair loss, nausea, nerve and joint pain, weakness, all manner of aches and pains, paralysis, and many more.  It can make an adult body feel excruciatingly miserable, and can virtually destroy a child’s body.  I feel really strongly that we are to pray that the side effects of the chemo are not just minimized, but miraculously MISSING over the course of the next 3 years.  Pray that his body just somehow tolerates the poisons, without pain and suffering.  Pray and believe.
  • Pray that Jordan will continue to eat and sleep and stay active to keep his body strong and healthy.  It will get harder if the chemo really kicks in – but he needs to stay strong.  The constant interruptions at the hospital have made sleep hard to come by, but at home this should be better.  Pray that it is.

Will update again tomorrow with any news we can muster.  And certainly again when the test results come in.  Until then, we’re praying…

One Week Today

Today Jesse and Noah are one week old. They are doing really well and almost back up to their birth weight. They are healthy, strong, easygoing, and eating like champs. With great eating comes great… well, you know. But even though today is their one week birthday, I want to write for a moment about the real champ here. Rachel.

I can’t even begin to express how absolutely in awe I am of Rachel. I’ve always known how strong and capable she is, but the grace and power with which she carried two very large babies to term, and the resilience and perseverance that she has shown in the past week in caring for Noah and Jesse is beyond anything I could have imagined – especially after having undergone birth by caesarean. I know that I would never have been anywhere near as upbeat as she has mostly been throughout the pregnancy, the birth and the very sleepless first week of their lives. She is a miracle.

Rachel hasn’t done this alone. There are several contributing factors that have been keeping her going. First and foremost is Grandma Susan (shout out to Mrs. Hornor’s 3rd grade class at Evergreen Elementary for sharing her with us – oh and to Professor Hornor too). Twins are a lot of work and almost every task requires two people. Grandma has been there consistently to help care for the boys, but more importantly, she’s been there to take care of her baby, Rachel. Also, I’ve been reading to Rachel all of the cards, Facebook posts, blog comments, and emails that all of you have been sending. The love and support and generosity that you have shown has been sustaining to us, so keep it up.