Dear church family,
I spent some time with Alanna yesterday afternoon and evening. It's really incredible how much her health has deteriorated since the party, even in just the two weeks since she was last at church. I asked Jim about using the CaringBridge website to keep us informed, and I think he'd really like to, but there's no wireless Internet where they are, so he'd have to leave to update the journal. (If you'd like to e-mail them a message, I'm happy to print it and take it over there on my way home or to work.)
Alanna is hard to understand at times (frustrating for her), and she's having some occasional confusion, hallucinations, and forgetfulness, which compound the communication problem. She has not lost her sense of humor and great patience. She had several other visitors yesterday, which perked her up.
Alanna has fluid building up in her abdomen. They should have results about the source of that today, but none of the possible explanations sound encouraging. She had a transfusion, some Benadryl, and she continues on IV antibiotics, in case her fever is due to infection. She can't stand up on her own, but does really well sitting up in a chair, in fact, I think she was more mentally sharp when she was sitting than laying down. She can't drink, but has been using swabs to get sips of tea with lemon and some broth. When you're in the hospital, if you're not really with it all the time, it's important to have an advocate who is paying attention. Right now, I think the greatest need is for visitors, especially people that can sit with her long enough to relieve Jim when he feels like he can leave to pick up the kids or have a meal (if that's you, call him on his cell to set up a good time). Sherry Redfield took Jim and the kids to dinner last night. I stayed until some other visitors from St. Paul came, and on my way out, Dana Sherill was coming in. Great!
please pray for alanna, as it seems her cancer is getting worse. i can only pray for god's will in this, because i don't know why it's happening, and i don't know how to fix it. all i know is that she is losing her strength very quickly. she has two children, one in high school and one in middle school, and they are far too young to lose their mother.
My mantra for today:
I will appreciate every day God gives me.