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Chapter 9, Biopsy results–Good News!

Then on October 28, 2008, I finally got the news from the laboratory about my tissue sample.

Dear family and friends,

I finally got some feedback from my doctor who’s just gotten the first set of results from the tissue analysis following the surgery. The good news is: they got all the cancer! There were some spots of concern in the tissue outside of the tumor (from the biopsy?), so the doctor said I’d made the right decision to do a mastectomy rather than a lumpectomy. More good news is that there was no cancer in the lymph nodes, so it hadn’t spread yet, as other tests of the liver, lungs and blood had also confirmed.

The most interesting news and in direct answer to our prayers: the tumor itself was actually smaller than when it was measured earlier! It had shrunk from 2 cm to 1.7 cm! Yeah! Thank You Jesus! I, of course, also give some credit to the herbal tea, which the doctor had said hopefully would do just that as it improved my liver and kidney function enabling my body’s immune system to produce more killer cells to more effectively fight the cancer. Thanks also to the live foods/high alkaline/enzyme-rich vegan diet I’ve tried to follow since my diagnosis (and will continue to follow, as much as possible, for the rest of my life). I am SOOOOOOOOO THANKFUL!

Thank you for your prayers and loving concern for me! It all paid off! God truly answers prayer!

I still have a couple of prayer requests, though.

First, for my continued healing from the surgery and that the cancer will never return.

Second, for my wisdom in continuing to care for my body as the doctor is meeting this week with others at the hospital to counsel about their cancer patients and to recommend a course of action. He told me they will recommend either hormone treatment or chemotherapy. I hope to avoid both and to continue with prayer and natural methods, so please pray for my conviction and wisdom.

Third, for my protection against lymphedema, a condition I will be at risk of developing for the rest of my life since many lymph nodes were removed from under my right arm. Here in Vietnam, traffic conditions are such that it is very easy to get arm injuries just from the sheer numbers of people crowded onto the streets. We drive motorcycles and people can easily bump each other, not to mention the extremely high risk of “knock-down” accidents. So, I’ll have to always be extra protective of my right arm from now on. Maybe it seems a small price to pay for the removal of the evil cancer, but avoiding any heavy bruising or strong pressure (blood pressure cuffs, esp.), pricks or punctures (including blood tests)sunburn or heavy lifting (my grandchildren!!! Poor me!!!) or strenuous arm movements (no tennis!!! Didn’t know I play tennis??? I don’t. So, no problem!) will be challenging. But, we’ve come this far by faith and intend to keep trusting the Lord, so please keep this also in your prayers. Thanks so much!

Thanks also for your prayers for my dad. He is in a convalescent home now, recovering from pneumonia and surgery. Please continue to pray for him to gain strength and to return to normal as quickly as possible. Thanks.

Lots of love,

Me

Reply from L.

October 30, 2008

Dear ___________,

This is, indeed, very good news and I am so very happy to hear from you! I really hope you can avoid hormone therapy and chemotherapy but I would listen to their suggestions and weigh the risks. It is fabulous your tumor shrank from 2 cm to 1.7 cm. You are doing something right!

P. and I went to S. on Monday and saw your Dad and D. and S. Your Dad seems to be better, but I guess regaining strength from these long hospital stays is extremely difficult. We didn’t see your Mom. I think she was home resting. I heard she is really exhausted from all of this. We also had lunch with D.G.–who seems to be pretty good. It is so difficult to grow old and often find life so very lonely, boring and painful. I wish I lived nearer all of them and could make a difference in their lives.

I continue to think of you very often. Please continue to let me know how you are doing.

Lots of love,

L.

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