Sunday, April 25, 2010

Lisa's Treatment Delayed

So….. Lisa’s MIBG treatment has been delayed. You’ll never guess why….go ahead, try…what do you think could have happened to delay the treatment? Why you think about it, I’ll fill you in on what else is going on.

Things have been going really well. Lisa is feeling great. The rest of the kids are doing well, my dad’s surgery went fine and his scans came back clean. Yeah!!

We’ve been keeping ourselves busy trying to get the pieces in place for the fundraiser. Today, Tom, Lisa and I accompanied two of our committee members, Aaron and Claudia, as they visited one of the Harley Shops to drop off fliers for the motorcycle ride. We ended up talking to some of the bikers out back and they were all very supportive. One special biker, John, let Lisa start his bike, play with the radio, put on his helmet, gave both Tom and Lisa turns sitting on his bike. Another biker was a chaplain and prayed over Lisa. The kids loved meeting everyone and we’re hoping that they spread the word and help us make this the best fundraiser ever.

As the number of days until Lisa and Maranda enter the hospital shrunk to single digits, I found myself getting more anxious. Even though I know I have to think positive, it takes a lot of mental energy to lock away all the “what ifs” and I get pretty edgy. As the end of the week grew closer, I realized that my efforts and focus have revolved around what things I could do/make/get for Lisa to try to make her five day stay go by as quickly as possible. Sadly, I hadn’t put any thought into what Maranda might need. Because her condition has a “cure” my focus was not as intense. That just isn’t fair; she needs/deserves attention (as do Thomas and Chrissy).

I wondered how Maranda felt about all the attention going to the fundraiser and Lisa. When I asked her, she thought for a second, and said it was okay and she understood. Understood? How can anyone understand any of this, how can someone so young be so brave and selfless? It made me sad to realize that I’ve become quite cavalier with the hospital routine. The first time Lisa ever had surgery was to put tubes in her ears. Mike and I both took her and were so anxious. We asked lots of questions, read the paperwork thoroughly and were so worried about her going under and the possible side effects. I got teary eyed when she went to sleep under anesthesia and was teary eyed when she returned a short time later groggy and grumpy. Now, I just go in, sign the papers and although I worry, I have this false sense of security that everything is going to be just fine. I realize I need to not downplay Maranda’s surgery and make sure Maranda knows that she too has people backing her, she is not alone and she does not need to be so brave, that it’s okay to be scared. Mike and I will be there for her, Thomas, Chrissy, Lisa, by their sides, for the big and small curves (no pun intended) in life.

So given all the thinking I was doing this last week, I had to wonder if the delay in Lisa’s treatment was an intercession from God. Was this his gentle reminder that I needed to tend to Maranda’s needs as well as Lisa’s? (not to mention Tommy and Chrissy) Was this God’s way of giving me a little more time to get it all done? Was it his way of solving the problem of how I could leave Lisa lying in one wing of the hospital while Mike and I paced the floor of another worried and waiting for Maranda to come out of surgery? So…….what actually did cause the delay in Lisa’s treatment? Did you figure it out? Did you guess? It was the giant ash cloud, you know, the one from a volcano in Iceland. That’s right, because of the volcano, air freight delivery was disrupted and this impacted the delivery of one of the drug components used by the pharmaceutical company to make the agent needed for Lisa’s treatment. Hmmm….act of nature or act of God?

So, now we focus on getting Maranda ready for the week. I’ll be reaching out to some of her friends (shhh, to those of you reading) to make care packages so we can give her a little something each day to keep her occupied. And I’ll make sure I check in and see how she is feeling and doing…cause if I’m scared I have to imagine she is to!

On a final note, the fundraiser is going full-steam ahead and we’ve got a very capable committee on board to continue on with our mission as we tend to our kids. For those of you who want to attend, we did find a way to accept credit card payments. You will need to create a free account with Giftberry (Giftberry is a 501.c.3 non-profit organization that provides free web-based services to qualified charities It is a secure website. there is no membership or registration fee to join GiftBerry.). Just click the link at the top of the page and it will guide you thru the steps needed to use your credit card to make reservations for BLASTnb. To pay by check/cash, simply print, complete and mail the form from


Anonymous said...

Wow, how crazy that a volcanic eruption would effect so many different aspects of life!!! I'm with you. I think it is God's way of being able to focus on one child at a time. Also, Lily would love to visit Maranda and make a care package. Call me at 734-239-2263 or email me at to let us know what we can do.

Take care
The Kreagers

Anonymous said...

I suspect that Maranda and all of your kids have learned that life is just not fair (no matter how much we want it to be), and that's a pretty handy fact to have at hand for coping with life's challenges. Just the fact that you're thinking about how Maranda is handling all of this is a good indicator that she's going to be just fine, emotionally and physically. And once you've "beaten the odds" with a deadly illness, it's pretty normal to be less keyed up about other, non-life-threatening health challenges. It's not that you aren't concerned, you just have an altered perspective about everything. I'm sooooo glad for you all that that volcano gave you a bit of a break (wow, I never would have guessed that!), but I suspect that if the cosmos has a message for you, it's something more along the lines of "Keep up the good work--you're amazing."

Sending Maranda some extra healing energy this week, and all my best to the rest of your crew.

Take care. You're in my thoughts.


Anonymous said...

Terrific work on the fundraise; the McMasters Rock!!!!

I'm glad you'll have time to focus on Maranda's needs this week. With all that you and your family juggle you are such a source of inspiration, amazement, and wonder. Your care and compassion for one another is beautiful. Extending that compassion and care to yourself is a good thing too ;).

Sending much good energy to all of you.

With much love,