Thursday, June 30, 2011

Day 285

I can’t believe this is my life right now. I am 25 years old. Isn’t this the time in your life that you are supposed to feel the best? The time where you jump at the chance of adventure? Where energy comes in endless supply? This should be a time in my life when I get fun travel magazines in the mail not stacks and stacks of medical bills that are rapidly depleting my cancer fund. Or a time when I should be playing tennis with my husband instead of barely being able to make it up the front stairs to the door. I am falling further and further from the woman I once was. I am always tired, always in pain and I have to take medications by the handfuls; and those handfuls cause horrible side effects. I don’t sleep without nightmares. I don’t move without pain searing throughout my body. I feel so much guilt for the things I am not able to do. I want to be the wife that cleans the house and makes dinner for my husband when he comes home from work and I want to be the friend who cooks a meal for a girlfriend in need. I can start trying to do those things, but right in the middle of it my legs start to ache and quiver, or my head starts to feel so dizzy I almost fall down. I stop and rest which only makes things worse. A time of rest quickly turns into a complete emotional meltdown. I am so frustrated that because of my physical weakness I am unable to complete even the simplest of tasks. I have tried doctor after doctor, medication after medication, vitamin after vitamin and nothing makes me feel like Sarah Elizabeth Lien the 25 year old woman that has an amazing future ahead of her. In fact I don’t remember that Sarah. All I know is the exhausted, sick and depressed Sarah that has lost some of her hope in feeling better. Will I ever be whole again? Will I ever overcome this dark cloud in my head? Will I ever smile without it being forced? I know there are some things that make me happy no matter what but they can never last forever. Flowers, babies, my nephew Roman; I can’t make flowers bloom all year round, I can’t hold newborn babies all day long and I think my sister Bethany would miss her child if Roman moved in with me. So it’s back to the drawing board for happiness for me.  I need some help for happiness.

God, please let me see the beauty everywhere I look. I want happiness. I want wholeness. It has been too long since I have felt well. Please heal my body. Please lay your mighty hand over me and heal every muscle, every bone, and every cell. Keep me tucked away in the safety of your arms. Heal me O God.

Love Always,

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day 284

I told you all I would put an update on here the next day, but I got so caught up in the whole "hospital" thing that I totally forgot. On Wednesday at about 3:30 in the afternoon Sarah was finally discharged. For all of Tuesday and Wednesday the hospital was only using medicine that Sarah could have at home. They seemingly have found a regiment of medications that will work for now. One big change is that Sarah's pain doctor will be slowly reducing the dose of Sarah's pain cocktail to find the least dose that is still effective. That way there will be less impact on her stomach. Now that Sarah is much more stable and is eating again, she should also be able to do some very very light exercise to strengthen herself which should really help the pain in her muscles and joints. Her doctor's are now looking to make a lot of little changes that will hopefully yield big results overall.

Just as all of you have been thinking that Sarah and I can't catch a break lately...just wait...there's more. On Thursday, I was at work and Sarah and her Mom were at our new apartment we just moved to a couple of weeks ago. They decided to make some lunch and fired up the oven for the first time to make some Texas toast. As the oven got going suddenly smoke started barreling out, quickly a fire started that even more quickly began to get out of control. With some flour, a fire extinguisher, some help from the landlord and finally the fire department (called by Sarah), the fire was finally put out. The final result let me tell you was less than pleasing. There was a huge cloud of thick black smoke that covered the entire apartment. All that smoke settled as thick sticky dust over every single knook and cranny of the apartment. It took countless hours of seemingly endless cleaning to finally get things close to normal. We very thankfully had the help of both sets of our parents. Without them we could not have done it. There was no permanent dammage done to the apartment but we lost a couple of essentials. A cupcake pan, a pizza pan, two kitchen rugs, a cooling rack, the tops to our pyrex glassware, an entire bottle of laundry soap (we had to wash all our clothes, curtains, pillows, etc.) I think that is everything oh oven. haha. We can laugh about it now but for the last day and a half it has been no laughing matter. The smell of smoke is still somewhat present and I am sure it will take a while to dissipate, but the good news is that no one was hurt and no priceless belongings were ruined.

We thank the Lord that he always has his angels surrounding us and keeping us protected, but we are pleading with Him to stop thew hits that seemingly just keep coming. Please pray that Sarah and I could finally enter a season in our lives where things start to look up again.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day 283

Monday, Sarah was admitted to the hospital at the University of Washington. The plan, in short, is to find a solution for pain and nausea that will work for her at home. Since Monday, they have managed to get Sarah to a more stable state where she can eat and drink without vomiting. This is a very good thing as she has not eaten since Thursday. Tomorrow (Wednesday) the doctors here will start to try new means of pain and nausea control until a solution that is tested and proven here at the hospital is found. It is not fun for Sarah to be at the hospital, but at the moment it is the only place she has been stable for a couple of weeks.

Thanks for all the prayers over the last couple of days. We feel them and could not make it without them. I will update the blog tomorrow with info as to what the "plan" is.


Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 282

When will she feel better???
Sarah has been so sick for so long that she doesn't remember what it feels like to be healthy. She is completely at her wits end with pain and nausea. For the last few months, Sarah has been on a pain cocktail to try and help manage her pain. That cockail, while she tolerated it early on, is now making her incredibly nauseous. For the past week and a half, Sarah has consistently had a very high level of nausea, but that nausea has now become vomiting. Sarah is unable to keep food, most medications, or large quantities of fluids down, a very bad cycle which has led to numerous emergency room visits. Now Sarah's only option is stop the pain cocktail to help the nausea, but then be in searing pain 24/7. The Seattle Cancer Care Alliance wants to admit her to the hospital to try and stabilize her while also trying to find a different solution to combat her pain. While this might sound like a simple solution to most, one more IV poke, one more trial and error with different medications, or one more time throwing up from a new medication will almost literally send her over the edge of insanity.

We need your help! We need prayer. Prayer for pain....Prayer for nausea...Prayer that God would FINALLY move his hand and bring my suffering wife some quick relief. I struggle to undestand all the reasons why Sarah needs to be so sick this far out from her treatments. I struggle to be able to keep my frustration under the radar so I don't further add to Sarah's. I am powerless to do anything for my wife and that is very very difficult. To see someone you love so much be in so much pain and agony and not be able to do one thing to help is heartbreaking. Please plead with me that God will see Sarah's hurt and decide to act on her behalf. God has helped us in so many ways this last year and I am eternally grateful for the grace He has shown, but what I need now is for my wife to be whole again. Please join with me and intercede for our sweet Sarah.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Day 281

Wow, how awful can one person feel? I like to think I’d take the cake but I know there are worse off people than me and I have such a heart for them because I truly know what it means to hurt…emotionally and physically. Tomorrow I have another appointment in Seattle at the Cancer Care Alliance’s pain clinic and I am hoping for a miracle. My levels of pain and nausea are just putting me right on the brink of being out of commission. Kirk has been a life saver this last week! I hurt when I’m awake, I hurt when I’m asleep…oh that pretty much covers my day and night. I just want to feel good for a little while and be able to pick up my nephew without tensing up my whole body. To jump into my husband’s arms and not have him worry if he is going to hurt me if he hugs me. To sleep for more than 30 minutes at a time without nightmares or awakening pain jolts. I know it will get better so for now I will picture my great big sun hat sitting in a chair nestled in the sand on my beach in Hawaii feeling the warmth of the sun and hearing the light crashing of the waves on the shore. Anyone care to join me?

With all this pain and nausea I had to figure out something I could do to get my mind off all the hurt. And guess what? I did it! I found a hobby that doesn’t cost me but saves me money! Couponing! I can coupon when I am sick and when I’m having not such a bad day. Today Kirk and I went shopping and I saved us $20 on grocery items we were going to buy anyways! At the checkout counter I wanted balloons to fall from the ceiling and confetti everywhere you looked but I didn’t get all that. I did however get a Good Job from the cashier and a hug from my Hubby. I can’t wait until our next shopping trip…what will I save then?

Thank you for the continued prayer and financial gifts. It has been very hard with me not working and the extra funds have kept us out of debt from all the cancer treatments. We would be in a very different position without the help of family and friends. The aftermath of cancer has been a hard one but with a support group like ours it is easy to see that we are well taken care of by God and by YOU

Love Always,