Wednesday, August 27, 2008

We the Jury Find the Defendant...

I've had the privilege of jury duty this week. I was a little nervous at first, but it's actually been pretty fun. This is my first experience, so I had no idea what to expect. On Monday, I joined a room full of strangers at the county courthouse. We have 3 judges and several criminal cases throughout the week. Because there are so many cases, we can be selected more than once. I got selected to sit on the jury for a case on Monday. I felt like I was on TV. I've never seen a real life trial. It was pretty laid back for the most part. The lawyers gave their opening speeches then called the 2 witnesses then gave their closing speeches. After that, the 6 jurors had to come to total agreement whether the defendant was guilty or not guilty. I make it sound light and comical, but I did take it seriously knowing this decision affected someone's life and near future. The criminal cases were for misdemeanors and the people can be sentenced up to one year in prison. We actually found him not guilty based on not enough facts and some doubt. Today, I had to go back to the courthouse but was not selected for the jury panel. I'm kind of glad about the decision because the case was about domestic abuse and I don't know if I truly could have been non bias. I have to go back tomorrow for more cases...we'll see if I get selected again. It's nice to have a little break from the hum drum of everyday work. It's nice to wear nice business clothes instead of scrubs. It's been a very good experience.

Happy Birthday Casey

Well folks today Casey Colson is 32 years old! It's actually been a birthday celebration week. Sunday, I took him to a birthday dinner at a Mexican restaurant he likes. Monday, we had birthday cake at my parents house with my sister and nephew. And today, he's a little under the weather so we're gonna stay home, order some pizza, and watch a movie he's been waiting to see. Give him lots of birthday wishes and calls.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Home Sweet Home

My dad's coming home today!! Praise the Lord! He's eating pretty well. He gets full really easy and his throat is sore from having the nasogastric tube in for a week, but he's tolerating them pretty well. He's sticking to soft foods and seems to be digesting them well. He will still have his J-tube until after chemo/radiation. The feeding tube was surgically inserted to give him nutrition, basically formula, but they stopped for now. He is so happy to be getting out of the 4 walls of the hospital room. Can you blame him? I mean who likes to be woken up every 2 hours for someone to prick your finger or give you shots or take your blood pressure? I don't want to volunteer. The cancer did spread to his lymph nodes. They took all the nodes around the area and 8 out of 14 were affected, so all the cancer's out. Let's just pray the chemo/radiation get rid of it forever!! We still have a long few months to come, but I'm confident in the ultimate Healer. God is teaching me so much through this. To praise Him in the rain. When you're down the only way to look is up and you want peace and strength and comfort, and He wants praise. To have you seek Him and thank Him for the difficult times so we can learn and give Him glory. The Mercy Me song has personal meaning now. I can't thank you enough for all of your prayers...they were heard!

Bring The Rain

I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I've gone through
The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You
Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It's never really ever crossed my mind
To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times
So I pray

Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings You glory
And I know there'll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that's what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain

I am Yours regardless of
The dark clouds that may loom above
Because You are much greater than my pain
You who made a way for me
By suffering Your destiny
So tell me what's a little rain
So I pray

Holy, holy, holy
Is the Lord God Almighty

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Dad Update

I just wanted to give an update on my dad. He's out of ICU and on a step down unit. The morphine he's on makes him really groggy and he's confused most of the time. It's hard seeing him like that even though I know it's the drugs. Casey spent the last night with him and I'll stay tonight. Hopefully it'll be uneventful. He pulled his nasal gastric tube out of his nose this morning, had a nose bleed, and they had to put the tube back down poor thing. They have him walking to his door and back and sitting in a chair. Hopefully he'll be walking more and talking nonsense less. Thank you so much for your prayers and calls.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Good News

We just had a couple visits with my dad. He's off the vent! Praise the Lord!! He's breathing all on his own and he's sitting up and talking. He says his pain isn't too bad. They took him off the Fentanyl drip and put him on a PCA pump with Morphine so he can give himself doses. We talked to the doctor and he says he's doing well. They'll have him up today and sitting in a chair. Sunday they're going to have him walk around the ICU and he'll hopefully be on the floor by Monday or Tuesday. Thank you for your prayers!

Dad's Surgery

Well, my dad made it through surgery. The doctors say he did really well and he's strong. Yesterday was hard and I'm sure today will be harder. The cancer has spread to his stomach so they had to remove half of his stomach and 40% of his esophagus. They removed all of the tumor, so everything left is clean. I guess they can't tell if lymph nodes are cancerous so they are sent for biopsy and we'll get results in 5 days. Because the cancer had spread he will have to go through chemo and radiation, but won't start for 2 months until he's recovered. He's in ICU at Crawford Long on the ventilator. The doctors want the anesthesia to wear off gradually, so he should wake up today. If he breaths on his own and follows commands then they'll take the vent tube out. He's on a continuous Fentanyl drip for pain because the anesthesiologist wasn't able to get the epidural in for his pain block. They'll try again today. Apparently this is the most painful surgery you could have. So it's farther along than we thought, but hopefully they removed it all. He's got a 30% chance of long term survival meaning more than 5 years. I just hate seeing him like this. I know he's drugged and still under anesthesia, but he's so helpless. He's got a chest tube draining fluid from surgery, a nasal tube draining blood from his stomach from surgery, and a tube to breath. They had to give him some volume for his low blood pressure last night. I know the pain medicine can make his blood pressure drop, but it can also be due to blood loss or shock to his system. I'm hoping they didn't have to start of blood pressure drips last night. That's stuff I see and do every day just on a smaller scale. I know what they're for, it's just hard to see someone you love have to go through that. I'm feeling ok....a little scared because I just want to know what's going to happen. God gave me a night of wonderful sleep with no dreams or interruptions. I'm thankful for that b/c I went after work yesterday and stayed up 28 hours. We're about to go visit him this morning. We need your prayers now most of all. I can't thank you enough. I love you guys! Keep you posted.

* Please pray that he comes off the vent today and breathes on his own. That was his worst fear.
*Pray for God to take his pain away, for the epidural to work. The pain medicine his on only decreases his respiratory drive.
* Pray the cancer hasn't spread to his lymph nodes and chemo/radiation works
*Pray for an uncomplicated and quick recovery

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Dad Update

Just wanted to give a quick update on my dad. He'll be having surgery on Friday to remove the cancer in his esophagus. All of our prayers have been answered so far. The cancer hasn't spread so he won't need chemo/radiation after surgery. The cancer's small and close to the stomach so they'll just cut it out and stretch the stomach up. It sounds like it'll be a long and slow recovery, but that's ok. I can't thank you enough for your calls and prayers. It means so much to me to have such wonderful friends in our lives. Please pray that the surgery goes well and is uncomplicated. Please pray that he'll be able to come off the ventilator quickly unlike his previous surgery and that the doctor's will be able to get all of the cancer. I'll let you know the surgery goes on Friday!