Molecular Therapy has been restarted

Posted in From Al & Libbie, General, Updates at 8:36 pm by Al

I started the targeted molecular therapy on Friday night. My feet began to tingle by the next morning—last time it took a week to have any reaction. And then it was a few days before it became severe. So, like the old early warning system that was used during the Cold War (yes, I am that old), we are treating the tingling as an indication to head off and intercept the attack before it becomes severe. To that end I have been staying off my feet (even though I could still be on my feet for now), even using a wheel chair. I have also been icing my feet and keeping them elevated. So far, nothing worse than tingling and feelings of heat on the bottom of my feet. No blisters or deep redness.

The idea is that I may develop resistance if we can allow my body to react more slowly. Indeed, there are indications that the second time around the reaction can be less severe.

Join us in prayer that I will be able to tolerate the treatment this time. If I don’t, I will stop the drug again and try once more, this time with a reduced dosage.

Over the weekend I have come down with a cold and fever. I’ve stayed on the couch all day. In fact, I am writing this while reclining on said couch.
Saturday we had WONDERFUL help in moving our bed down from the loft where we had it and moving my file cabinets and files up to the loft. It was almost a two-hour project. Six wonderful helpers from the Westminster community came over. We could not have been more grateful.
Meals and other kinds of help have been well appreciated. My situation has certainly added burdens to Libbie, and I am grateful for all the help she can get.

We have been having a very nice visit with our oldest daughter, Rebeckah, who is home on break between trimesters. She graduates in June, an event which we anticipate with joy.

Eowyn, our youngest daughter, has been quite ill over the weekend. She spiked a fever of 103.5 and was dehydrated. Her pulse soared and her blood pressure dropped. She got 2 liters of fluids by IV and lots of Tylenol at the hospital. The thought was pneumonia, but in the end the diagnosis was some kind of nasty virus. She is better today.

I did get out to a beer-tasting event Saturday night with some friends. I spent the evening in a wheelchair to minimize pressure on my feet. People were kind and let us right up to tables. It was a very nice excursion. Good for the soul.

We read Psa. 139 around the dinner table tonight. Wherever we are, God is there ahead of us. Each of us drew comfort from this as it touched each of us where we are at the moment.

Blessings, Al

PS from Libbie: As you can see from Al’s note, it has been an eventful weekend at our house. It was wonderful to have help from friends in moving Al’s office and getting our bed set up on the lower level of our bedroom (it had been up in a loft for years, which was very tough for Al when his feet were bad, as you can imagine). Eowyn is improving after her ER visit, for which we’re very grateful. Alden was in a soccer tournament this weekend and got his first-ever yellow card. For those of you not familiar with soccer, that’s not a good thing. However, his foul was not intentional, and his teammates were very proud of him. But here’s what I found most amusing: while I was at the doctor and ER with Eowyn, Becky stepped up to the plate and made sure Alden got enough lunch before his game, had all the various pieces of his uniform, a water bottle, warm clothes, etc., etc. Then she drove him over and sat in the freezing cold wind in a collapsible chair to cheer him on. She said that it occurred to her on one of her four round trips to the junior high ferrying assorted soccer gear and people in a mini-van, that she had become the stereotypical suburban soccer mom. She found the thought somewhat horrifying. I had to chuckle.

Thank you all for your prayers!


  1. Jennifer White said,

    March 20, 2006 at 12:29 am

    Al and Libby,
    After reading some of the comments on the blog site, I’ve had the distinct realization that I am not the only one who adores you and your family and is endeared to you forever. I thought I had found God’s best kept secret: the Grove’s Family. Oh,well.
    As David said tonight, “What a high impact life he’s lived”. Your steady faith, your tender care, your love for the body of Christ is beyond compare in my life. Thank you both, for letting us partake in your struggle, your suffering. To glean what it looks like to suffer well. To behold what it looks like to embrace God and his ways in the midst of fear and burdens. Bless you dear friends, we are with you.
    On a more personal note, Elijah, Zachary, Nathaniel and I have looked at the picture of you all in the wheel chairs many times. We have prayed and talked about what you all may/must be experiencing…but alas, at the end of each “deep spiritual time” one of the boys brings up the state of Alden’s hair. Now, when I was there just a few weeks ago Al, you were laying down the law to Alden about having to get it cut for his grandpa…I guess that trip was nixed for the treatment. Based on Aldens retorts at the time, I’m betting he’s releaved and rejoicing. Now the boys just want to know how long he’s going to grow it. He could come stay out here on the Reservation and fit right in!
    Love, Love, Love you all, Jen

  2. Allie Stryd said,

    March 20, 2006 at 7:58 am

    We are praying for you all, that you would tolerate this treatment. Thankful that Becky was around this weekend… sounds providential! Beer tasting? Wondering if this is a step above (or below) a wine tasting? Can’t wait to see Becky.

  3. Rick Winter said,

    March 20, 2006 at 2:09 pm

    Al and Libby,
    We prayed for you last night and will read your update and pray again tonight at our group.

  4. Charis Liang said,

    March 23, 2006 at 12:15 am

    Dear Prof. Groves and family

    We Machenites here have prayed for you every Wednesday night. And we will continue to join the force of prayer and stand alongside you. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and updates with us.


  5. Myriam Hertzog said,

    March 23, 2006 at 10:57 pm

    Dr. Groves

    You may remember me from a night at Josh and Rachel Lickter’s house over the summer when I was rather pregnant or from standing in line at Mick Langley’s memorial service. I was deeply moved learning of your melanoma. A brain tumor took my aunt at age 41 and I had an iris melanoma a few years ago (which was operated on and removed). I am thankful to the Lord for your wisdom and love for all those whom you have touched. Also it has been great reading these stories about your family. My mother is Rebecca, my sister Eowyn and my little boy Aidan (now 8 months old). Your family names are endearing and familiar to me!
    We are praying for you regurlarly at our small group and hope we can be of encouragement to you through this trial. May God give you His strength through all of this
    Myriam and Andy Hertzog

Leave a Comment