Posted by: Jim E | September 9, 2011

Part 3…Sons of the Pioneers…Mayo Clinic…Minnesota State Fair…Surgery…And Stuff…

Waiting…it’s never been an easy thing for me…well, probably not for anyone…but we were now in the waiting room…we went to the cafeteria and had some breakfast and coffee…and that helped past some time but we still had a ways to go…every time I think of waiting, I remember to claim the verse in Isaiah 40:31 “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”…and we experience it that day…still not easy to wait…but our strength was renewed…and we had to continue with that strength…and in my mind, it was Jeremy who was going through all this…we were just the bystanders…interested bystanders…but bystanders none the less…we had to remain strong…that verse helps to make that happen…

Jeremy went to surgery at 8:15 and we got word when the procedure started, at 9:00…we winced a little on that news…why so long…we know, with Jeremy, it takes a while to get him under…not being able to use his mouth, it had to go through his nose…it is a little more complicated process…but at least the surgery started…now to wait some more…it was about 10:00 and they told us the surgery was over and he was sent to recovery…this, in the past was a long process…sometimes they had trouble getting him to breathe on his own…so we didn’t know how this would go…we got a call to go to the nurses station for a message…they told us that Dr. Keller wanted to talk to us…and told us where we should report to see him..

We waited for a few minutes and Dr. Keller came in…he said the surgery went well…told us what he did…he said they opened the area on the left lower jaw…made the incision…the back tooth had to come out first as he thought it would…it was loose already, probably because of the tumor…so we now knew it was a tumor…it was wrapped around the tooth…not news we wanted to hear…he said in the beginning it didn’t look like a tumor, it was hard to remove, they had to scrap it away from the bone…but they cleaned out the whole area…they sent the tissue to pathology for the preliminary test…a frozen slide to see what it was…and he was closing the opening when the word came down from pathology…it was a Mucoepidermoid Carcinoma…I’d never heard of the first word…but certainly knew the last one…I said, “Carcinoma?”…he said, “Yes.”…

But he said this is the preliminary report, the final report will come in 48 hours…where they stain the sample, etc…but he still thought this looked different than any he had seen…and would not be surprised if that report was different…but he said, with this type of tumor…there are two grades…(Sidebar…maybe it’s my Scandinavian heritage but it seems whenever there are two choices in anything, a line at the supermarket, at a stop sign, anything…it seems I choose the wrong line…you know what I mean…so I didn’t like this deal…end Sidebar)…he said, the two types are Low Grade and High Grade…High Grade is more serious and would need more serious treatment…Low Grade was much less serious…in fact there isn’t much difference between that and not being a carcinoma at all…we would just watch that…Jeremy’s tumor was Low Grade…I guess for once we picked the right line!!!…

But now Dr. Keller said, with that report…he had to open Jeremy’s jaw back up and cauterize both the bone and soft tissue…every inch or he would put it, every millimeter…line by line over and over, to make sure to kill any cells that may still be there…then he closed again, leaving the middle of the incision open so it would heal from the inside out…so it was important to keep the wound clean…now we would have to wait not only for Jeremy to come back from recovery but wait 48 hours for the final report to return…we have had enough cancer for a lifetime in our family…but one thing we know, Jeremy beat a more insidious cancer at two and a half…we had to be up for this fight too…the Lord has been with us the whole way…and He would be here too…

So we went back and waited…usually it is about one hour and they are sent back up to the room…there were two waiting rooms…the one we were in…I could see down the long hallway where they were wheeling the beds up to the rooms…one after another they came…I had my eye peeled on the hallway, a bit anxious…not about Jeremy’s condition or the surgery, or anything like that…I just wanted to “see him”…do you understand what I mean here???…I just needed to see him!!!…two hours when by…we checked with the nurse’s station…she came and told us they were having trouble with Jeremy’s oxygen level and blood pressure…another hour went by…and about 2:45…I see down that long hall…a little head, bald like his Dad…coming around the corner, he was facing us…I told Judie, “There’s Jeremy.”…she said, “Are you sure?”…I said, “Yes.”…I got up and started down the hall…here I am…a 6’5” hulk of a man…and as I got his attention…I raised my arms, in “Rocky” style…and hurried my walk…Jeremy saw me, of course…I’m sure he said to himself, rolling his eyes, something like…”That’s my Dad.”…and waved…

If you can believe this…this was “out patient” surgery…we knew it from the beginning…but it does seem weird after all that happened…in about an hour or so we left the hospital…Jeremy felt good…and as always in his surgeries…he had no pain…by his picture here, you can see he looks good…well, he was good…ice pack and all, a little apple sauce and a “pop”…a trip to the bathroom…take the IV out…and he was ready to go…he was hungry…he hadn’t eaten since the night before…so off we went…the doctor said he could eat anything…”he will just have to eat on the other side”…so we asked him what he wanted…”Culver’s,” he said, “hamburger, fries and coke…with a hot fudge shake on the side.”…back to normal, I guess…he did fine at Culver’s…I couldn’t believe it…but that’s Jeremy…

We knew we were in the Lord’s hands…life is full of tough stuff…but it is so good to know someone is in charge that is not us…I have always loved these two verses…Jeremiah 31:3 “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving kindness.” and Deuteronomy 33:27 “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.”…so it comes out like this, “We are loved with an everlasting love, and underneath are the everlasting arms”…this is on my desk as I write…always with me…

And the last couple of days in Rochester just puts an exclamation point to those verses…we had to wait for another day…surgery on Monday…and Tuesday was a day to just take at easy…we got up and had breakfast…went to Caribou for coffee…then back to the motel…(Jeremy’s other brother Jared, Marisa, his wife and two of their 6 kids came the motel, to see Jeremy…they were at the State Fair on Friday night…and we saw Jeremy’s other brothers Jay and Jess and their wives and families up in Minneapolis)…so we went to lunch…later they left to go back to Little Rock…it was a cold and rainy day…we were glad when we went to bed…big day tomorrow…

We got up early…our appointment to meet with Dr. Keller for the final report was at 1:00…we needed to check out because we didn’t know if we could leave for Little Rock or if we would need to stay around Rochester for more treatment if the tumor was more serious…now, we knew we where in God’s hands this whole time but you have to “get” the rest of this story…we were in the car driving around, wasting time…when a call came, “Can you come early?”…Oh wonderful, maybe we can start our long trip back early…”Can you be her by 10:00?”…Oh, we sure could…but we had to find parking…at this time of the morning, the ramps are full near the Clinic…drove to the ramp…the sign said “Full”…it would take more time, we had only 15 minutes…as I stopped the car…in front of the sign, the “Full” blinked off…and we drove in…as we did, a car pulled out of the second spot…we pulled in…

Already fully aware that the Lord was being gracious to us with “the early call”…the parking ramp light blinking off at our presence…the parking space right there…we were kind of floating across the street to the Clinic…to the elevator…up to the 12th floor…we were there in 6 minutes…unbelievable???…not so…”We are loved with an everlasting love, and underneath are the everlasting arms.”…He offers compassion and care…we had open arms to receive it…

The meeting with Dr. Keller went well, he didn’t have the final report (that came in two more days)…but nothing would change Jeremy’s treatment…at this time, still a low grade tumor…we have to send a pan x-ray of his mouth in 6 months and back next year at this time for another CT scan at Mayo Clinic…there is more to tell…but this is so long…our trip home was great…and Jeremy went back to work in a little over a week…he is doing very well…still healing but doing very well…and as usual, with him…no pain…we are a thankful group…life still is wonderful…we are blessed…

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Responses

  1. PRAISE THE LORD!!! I do not say that easily, but with great gusto and feeling. God is so faithful and we are so small in the vast universe. Yet He keeps us close to His heart and takes care of every detail. I loved that you were called in early and the parking space is such a confirmation of God’s wonderful detailed care. With that great ending I shall retire to bed as I have to run to Forest Lake tomorrow morning and have lunch with Kimberly Neitzel and Karen Miskowick and my little Sherri. Thanks for shaing your heart.

  2. Stopped by to see what’s been going on with you and wow! You have had your hands full. Hope all is well, and your son is still doing okay Take care and have a blessed week…..Saundra

    • Saun…Yup, an adventure for sure…Jeremy is doing well…he always does come back so well from surgery…we will just follow up on Jeremy as the good doctor says…and enjoy our lives…keep going with those photo shots…Jim E…

  3. Reblogged this on Your Roving Reporter.


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