Season of Suffering



Ella Joy was once again rushed to the hospital before Halloween for a high fever of 102.8. Her lips were numb and her knees were in pain. Usually she wakes up after Mike catches the train for work. This particular morning, Praise the Lord, Mike was home so he could drive her to the ER on the fly. We do not know for sure the causes of her fever, numb lips or hurting knees, but we were so thankful that her fever went down after a couple of Tylenol. Ella Joy was not able to go trick-or-treating, but she was able to get out of the ER in time for her school Halloween party! So thankful to Kelsey for not only coming early morning to help watch the kids at the ER, but she also faithfully came this week to clinic to watch Asaph as Ella Joy got her chemotherapy. We are so grateful for the sacrifices Kelsey makes every time!

This week at clinic, Ella Joy got an IV push of Vincristine through her port. We also got her counts and they looked great! Thank you so much for all your prayers for Ella Joy! One prayer request is that a couple of days ago, we were at home, and out of nowhere, Ella Joy started crying that her chest was hurting. She was in so much pain she was holding her hand to her chest in pain. Then she once again complained about her stomach hurting too. There have been several times in the past when she had told us her stomach hurt as well as her knees and legs. We understand that many times the chemotherapy drugs and hormones that she takes as well as the chemo she gets through IV can cause many short-term and long-term side effects. Please pray for God’s protection over her body as she continues taking chemotherapy every day for these next few months. We are praying that once she is done with chemotherapy, many of the side effects will subside and eventually go away.

Winston Churchill said, “We shall draw from the heart of suffering itself the means of inspiration and survival.” There have been many nights and early mornings Ella Joy came to me in tears that her body was in pain. I have learned to sleep with one eye open and to run down the stairs to prepare her medications in a rush. Sometimes when I hear her get up at night, I listen and I hold my breath … is she only going to the bathroom, or is she coming to me because her body is in too much pain? These days it is frequently the latter. I realize it is times like this I need to meditate on His Word: “Why are you downcast, Oh my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.” Psalm 42:11.

Ella Joy’s next clinic date is December 7th, Thursday. Please lift up prayers for Ella Joy as this will be her very last spinal tap!  (Please note that her last chemotherapy is January 7th). She will also get her Vincristine chemo IV push and we will once again find out her ANC counts.

I Peter 5:10 says “after your season of suffering, God in all His grace will restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. This is my prayer for Ella Joy as we near the end of her chemotherapy treatment. These last 2 years have been her season of suffering. Please pray that God in all His grace would restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish her. Thank you so much our fellow prayer warriors!

I would like to ask an additional prayer request, this time for Ella Joy’s baby brother Asaph.  He frequently climbs into bed with us in the middle of the night, and about a week ago, I noticed that his legs and feet felt burning hot.  He didn’t have a fever, but when he woke up he was in tears that his legs were hurting.  After giving him a tylenol, he seemed to be better, but in the midst of all the pains Ella Joy has been going through as a result of her chemo meds, it was a scare to see Asaph in pain as well.  Please lift up a special prayer request for our little Wolverine.