Nothing particular, 8.15.06

Posted in From Al & Libbie, Updates at 3:53 pm by Libbie

This is not an update of any particular news or developments, just a note to say that we are doing well and seeing lots of blessings day by day.

Al has been feeling markedly better on the whole the last several weeks, and that is wonderful! It’s true that the past few days he has been very tired and needing to sleep a good deal, and his headaches are returning (likely a result of weaning from the steriods–going back to the swelling on the brain from the tumor that was radiated with the gamma-knife procedure), but in general he’s feeling more like his old self, and we’re all enjoying that very much, as you can imagine!

Alasdair and Lauren (and their friend Andy, who is like a part of our family and who is working for a political campaign until November) have settled into their house in the city and have been painting and making it a great home. Lauren has a job about 15 minutes from home and is working hard and also getting to know friends at work. Alasdair is determinedly working his way through Greek and Hebrew to try to test out of some of each when seminary starts in September. In good Dutch fashion he has been getting around a lot by bike, sometimes even doing the grocery shopping that way (not as easy here as in the Netherlands!).

Becky started in mid-July working at Kelly Services (a temp work agency) in their main office. By her second day on the job she was hiring temp workers to send out to offices in the area. The job can be stressful, but she is doing very well at it and is glad to be gainfully employed. Thank you, all of you who prayed for her to find a job! Her roommate Melissa (who has also become part of our family now) started a temp job at the University of Pennsylvania on Monday.

It’s a novel experience to have grown children living nearby. Last week we were invited to dinner at Lauren and Alasdair’s on Monday and at Becky and Melissa’s on Wednesday. What a treat!

After a busy start to the summer, Eowyn and Alden have been enjoying that delicious childhood luxury called leisure time. They hang with friends, bike around, go to the pool, do both fun and service-type things with the youth group, and generally soak up the summer experience of not being scheduled and pressured. Today they are at an amusement park with the youth group. A doctor we had an appointment with recently was talking about the necessity of “aimless time” for people’s general health, and I’m glad Eowyn and Alden are getting some. That will take a slightly different form starting tomorrow when Eowyn will have her two bottom wisdom teeth out. Then Alden will get braces on when he gets back from 5 days at youth group camp next week. So we’ll have some sore mouths… Lots of pudding and movie-watching, I suspect.

Al and I were able to get a bit of writing done, although less so last week than the week before. The Lord has been busy addressing issues in my heart on various fronts. As Al has commented, dealing with cancer doesn’t exempt you from the sanctification process! But the Lord is so gentle, and so patient, and so tender and encouraging as he tills the soil of our hearts, that it’s a gentle–in the end even a welcomed—process.

Saturday we got to see our brother-in-law and nephew on their way to college in Colorado, which was a great treat that we wished could have gone on longer, and then a woman from our church hosted a picnic for families who have been affected by cancer to celebrate the one-year anniversary of her breast cancer survival. Those of us there formed a group that none of us had ever wanted to belong to and that we wouldn’t want to see any of our other friends join, but we were glad of each other’s company.

Then Sunday morning Alasdair filled in for a friend in leading worship at church. Because the team was missing a female singer or two, Rebeckah and Eowyn got to join him. (Who knows, maybe another time Alden will get to be part of it too.) It was more wonderful than I can put into words to be led to worship before God’s throne by our own children. I doubt that any other joy on this earth can compete with that. During communion the three of them sang a trio that I hadn’t heard before, and I sat and marveled at the loveliness of it, and the privilege of being there to hear it sung beautifully by our kids, harmony and all, and the blessing of seeing the evidence of God’s grace in their lives and our own. We are so truly and deeply blessed, and we are humbled and grateful.

So, that about brings you up to date. No milestone news, but a glimpse of life around here.

We are all in complete denial about how much of the summer has passed and about how soon school (shhhh—that’s a bad word!) will be starting. As far as we’re concerned, summer is just getting underway, and we intend to continue in that delusion as long as possible…

Hope you’re enjoying the endless summer as well—




Continuing to feel better

Posted in From Al & Libbie, Updates at 2:15 pm by Al

[Note: During the summer, electrical storms regularly result in power outages at Westminster Seminary, where the server for the blogsite is physically located. There are times when the server can be down for more than a day. So please be paitent if you try to access the blogsite and you get a screen message that says that something is wrong. Our IT people have done an excellent job of getting the system going again quickly each time it’s been down.]

In the past two weeks I have felt better than I have since the end of February, when I began treatment. Due to the bloodclot and discovery of the tumor in my brain, I stopped treatment on May 19. From that point forward my body began to detox from the treatments, and I began to feel better after about 6 weeks of being off treatment. The decision not to return to treatment at this point has resulted in a continued period of feeling better. My leg frequently swells, but it doesn’t hurt.
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