The good news is that I have a new date confirmed for my stem cell transplant. That means that I am cleared to move forward. I am in good health. The recurrent fevers that bothered me throughout the month of August have disappeared. The effects of three months of taking large doses of steroids have worn off. I have received a ten day treatment of intravenous antibiotics to make sure that there are is no lingering infection in my bloodstream. The doctors are satisfied that my immune system can be shut down and then jump-started again without great risk. That is the good news.
The frustrating news is that the
next dates that are open for a stem cell transplant in Vancouver are
September 21 and 22 - two weeks from now. There are only two or three
such transplants scheduled in any given week so when a procedure like
mine is delayed it is not easy to slot me back into the schedule. I am
on the cancellation roster so there is a chance that a spot may come up
on short notice before the 21st. If not, I will have to wait until four
weeks after the dates originally set for the transplant procedure. I
know that in the long run a month long delay in this journey will be
quickly forgotten as I return to health. But in the short run I am
finding myself disappointed. It means a month long delay
before getting started with the process of recovery. It also means a
month long delay in my return to ministry at University Hill
Congregation. Now instead of planning to return for Advent I will not
likely be back until Christmas or Epiphany. It is good to know that things are well in hand at UHill with Doug Goodwin stepping in as associate minister for the upcoming six months.
the meantime, I will try to build up my health with daily walks, good
food and plenty of rest in advance of the chemotherapy and stem cell
transplant. Thankfully, the weather is co-operating here with warm,
sunny days. I will also forge ahead with some of the reading and writing
that I have been planning to do during my recovery time. And I will try
to catch up on replies to some of the many folks who have been in
contact with good wishes. Thanks again to all of you for checking in and
keeping up with me.