Update on Gary, August 29

The following message was supposed to be put on the blog last week (8/21) but, due to technical ineptitude (mine), it wasn’t. Since it still remains pretty much the status of Gary’s treatment and condition, I’ll post it as is, with this quick footnote. Today, 8/29, was Gary’s 10th radiation session which means that we’re a third of the way to completion. Still not sure what effect the regimen is having, but we’re hopeful.

August 21, 2011    – –         It was a month ago yesterday that we first learned of Gary’s illness and we’ve covered lots of ground – physical, emotional, spiritual – in four short weeks. Gary’s perspective of time has been a bit spotty and he tells us often that it just seems like 3 or 4 days that we’ve been dealing with his tumor; maybe that’s a mercy. The rest of us are tired but still honored and grateful to be carertakers of such a good soul. I played my last concert for awhile last weekend, having chosen to clean the slate so that I can devote my attention to my brother in the next few months. In the concert last weekend, I concluded with a story and song for Gary that we’ll try to post here sometime soon.

Gary began radiation and chemotherapy this past week and, after 4 of 30 treatments, there have been no bad side effects. The daily routine is really rather simple. Radiation treatments take about 10 minutes (the ride to and from town takes much longer) and chemo is simply one pill an hour before the radiation. Doctors and nurses have been more than kind and Gary reminds me often, with reference to the Amos Cancer Center, that “I don’t see this as my place of cure as much as I see it as my place of ministry.”

Thank you for your concern and prayers. We are more aware than ever that there are many, many people who are contending with all manner of hurts, losses, illnesses and challenges. Having you stand with us has been a gift indeed. Thank you. Thank you.