Nan Mustard's Recovery

This blog is a record of Erin (Nan) Mustard's recovery.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Track or Treat, Nan at the door

Dear Friend and Family,

Nan positioned herself by the front door this evening and gave out candy to the cute trick or treaters, finally she tired and passed the torch to Starr and me to do. Just now I ran out of candy so lights out for the evening. We were very surprised to have a little monkey at the door, it was Keanna. I have included a photo of Keanna and mom as she took a break from trick or treating. Nikki hung a little flashlight around her neck so she could see the ground as she walked. It was so fun to see her having a blast on this cool fall evening. Actually it was hard to tell who was having the most fun, Keanna or her mother.

This has been a day of production. I have been in this chair for about 12 hours so far and Nan has encouraged me to stick with it. Thanks sweetie. Today we finalized several doctor appointments, Nov. 9 we see the urologist at UCSF, soon Nan will be getting a blood transfusion, her number was 8.5 yesterday. Tomorrow I am going to try to see a couple properties and get some more work completed and out the door. Nan will continue to gradually recover and it is possible Sylvia might come for a visit in the afternoon. Helps the day pass to have a friend to do things with.

Nan had a brilliant idea this evening, get a take out order from Gratzies of some yummy soup we both love. So while she manned the door handing out candy I ran into brentwood and grabbed the soup. It was very very good. She had a big bowl of it.

In the last 24 hours the drainage from the incision wound was about 100 cc which we believe is less than in prior times. Oh how we long to see it come up dry but not yet.

So I close for this evening. We continue to hope and pray for God's healing, we appreciate the many times God has helped Nan during her recovery. It has been 5 months now and sometimes it seems like its been forever and other times it seems like Boston was yesterday.

Sending our love,

tim and nan

Monday, October 30, 2006

Monday evening

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan just went up to bed after watching CSI Miami. It was interesting since it was partially about a cruise ship and we love anything to do with cruising. Also they make Miami look a lot better than we remember it from the few times we have been there. Magic of TV I guess.

Nan spent the majority of today by herself and handled it very well. I left this morning for Dixon and then Vacaville to do appraisal work. She stayed downstairs until about 11 when she went up for a nap. She called early afternoon to report that the Zophram shipment had not yet arrived. Later she called to say it had shown up after all and was safely on the front porch. She was able to reach our nurse practiciner Dr. Yee at UCSF and found we need to make an appointment soon with the urologist team. We will do so tomorrow. We should also find out tomorrow if Nan's hemoglobin has reached a level where she needs a transfusion. After a time of having 3 units of blood in one week three weeks ago it is nice that some time has passed and her number was still 8.9. Nan is not running a fever, our nurse was here today to draw blood and to give a general assessment of Nan's condition. After several days of low energy Nan seems to be perking up this evening. Perhaps it was the visit from Nikki and Keanna tonight. They came and made dinner, we gave the mac and cheese dinners a try that Marilyn sent to us several weeks ago. They are great and we feasted on them. Nan had some as well and a couple green beans too along with a glass of milk and a fudgesickle. I did not do any work after I got home tonight. Traffic was so difficult that a 1 hour trip took over 2 hours to get home. I was exhausted. I'll start early in the morning.

Nan appreciates the calls she received today. I know of several people she talked to, Sharon, Jan, Dana, Irene, Carol Peden and there were probably more that I don't know about. A phone call lets Nan get out of the house mentally. She is immediatelly transported to your world and enjoys hearing about your adventures even if they are only tiny ones. Nan's world is so dominated by 5 bags right now that any escape is great and enjoyable. It does seem to us that the 5th bag may be having less fluid but who can know for sure. We switched to a better bag tonight, one that is more comfortable for Nan to manage, we'll see if that helps some.

Nikki helped me back the motorhome up to the garage tonight so I could dump the tanks and then take it back to storage. People get really uptight here if you keep it at your home too long. Seems everyone else knows more about your business than you do, I wish we lived on an acre with a shop and some privacy, like that is going to happen anytime soon.

I feel the effects of the day overwhelming me and sleep sounds pretty attractive. Nan and I want to thank you for your faithfulness in praying for her recovery. I am pleading morning and night with God to seal the leaking places and I know He hears and is answering. What His answer is is unclear at this point.

Thank you for your kind prayers and I want to ask that you also remember Herb, a fellow GISTer who has just had Sutent fail for him. We remember when we found out Sutent had failed for Nan last January, it is a terrible blow. Herb is about to enter into a new trial to be conducted in Las Vegas for GIST and we pray it contains answers not only for his growing tumors but for others as well. We also remember Carol in Lodi, this is her week of Chemo and it is not a fun week for her. She and Bob have been faithful prayer warriors for Nan and we love them dearly. We are thankful that Roger Peden is recovering rapidly from his heart issues and is busy once again taking care of Lakemont Cottages.

Good night my friends,

tim and nan

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Home safe and sound

Dear Friends and Family,

We are home, arrived here about 7 pm after a very nice weekend at MBA with Jason and Jo. Although they were busy with junior varsity we still got to see them several times and enjoyed our time in such a beautiful place. They have their back yard so nice now with a special level walk that Nan can navigate well. It was fun to see Clayton also, hes a great young person.

Nan was able to visit with jason and Jo many times sometimes in their home and sometimes in the motorhome. We kept the heater running so were warm and cozy, comfortable and had lots to eat and drink. We were able to visit with Kevin Ahn, one of Jason's famous 4 friends from gradeschool and high school. A brilliant young man with an artist touch. he had come down to be an umpire for some of the games and it was great to see him again. Looks so good.

It seemed we had a more gentle ride home than going down. I slowed down a bit too, no rush to get home. Nan slept most of the way. We got a chance to stop and visit with Irene and her husband and for Nan to inspect the wonderful new kitchen. It truely is a work of art and shows lots of good workmanship and thought in its planning. Irene showered us with treats, what kind lady she is. It was the first time today that Nan had been up for any length of time and I think it felt good for awhile, then she began to fade and so back to the motorhome for the rest of the way home. Our dogs liked Ron a lot, says animals tend to like him and ours sure did.

It takes awhile to unload the motorhome, dirty linen, left over food in the frig, breathing machine, shoes, computer, briefcase, blankets but its all in now. Using the motorhome allows Nan to rest the entire trip and to have a comfortable place once we arrive. When we drive it reasonable speeds it gets about 10 mpg and with the better prices for fuel the trip was not so expensive this time. I had to see a house in Santa Cruz this morning so the trip becomes a writeoff as well.

Nan and I are both growing very tired of the leaking, having the 5th bag is really getting to her, it limits her movements and is fragile and can leak easily. The fluid that is leaking is highly smelly and Nan hates that as well. We are certainly ready for God to show us the next step. Our hearts long for a miracle again, healing the leaks.

Right now I am being urged to come rub nan's feet, once again thanks Jan for getting me into this.

We send our love and thank God for a safe trip. Our prayers are with you as you face the coming week.

tim and nan

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Sabbath evening -mellow peaceful day

Dear Friends and Family,

Its about 10:30 on Sabbath evening. Nan is resting and watching the food channel, right now its about Famous Amos cookies. I just got back from watching Jason coach a junior varsity team for MBA. Tonight they won big. Jason has an interesting style and the kids seem to respond well to his leadership, parents too. It was a blast to watch him at work. Jo's brother Clayton ran the post at the sideline showing the down line, probably has a name which I don't know. Jo was there also cheering the team from her school. Only problem, I went out dressed in shorts and sports shirt but the night had turned cold. By the time I realized I was cold I was down to the field so I just stayed and froze. On the way back Jo took mercy on me and bought a hot chocolate, it was a life saver. Now I'm back with Nan and we are both sipping hot drinks, hers is herb tea and mine is mocha.

We have had a really nice day and Nan has gotten a lot of rest. Now we are winding down and getting ready for bed. I started her TPN around 8:30 getting her started on her next round of nutrition and hydration. She is doing OK but continues to be sort of low energy and resting up this evening. Right now she is begging or asking for a foot rub, thanks a lot Jan, you have created a hard role to follow.

We will sleep till we wake up tomorrow, then I'll go see a house in Santa Cruz that needs me to see it as owner of the company, come back here and then drive home in the afternoon. This time we will get to see Irene and Nan can make an inspection of that wonderful new kitchen. On monday I will be seeing several properties and I sure hope we can find someone to visit Nan during the afternoon. If you can come please let us know.

We are thankful for our many blessings this evening. Having wonderful children like Nikki and Steve, Jason and Jo is the biggest blessing and Keanna is such a wonderful addition as well. Well I am being paged to run some feet so I'll sign off now.

Please keep Nan in your prayers this evening, we need this leaking to stop sooner than later and I am begging God for that miracle.

Sending our love,

Tim and Nan

Friday, October 27, 2006

Friday evening by the ocean at MBA

Dear Friends and Family,

I am sitting at the table in the motorhome which is parked adjacent to Jason and Jo's home which is about a 1/2 mile from the Pacific Ocean. If I listen carefully I can hear the breakers on the shore. The weather is perfect and Nan is sleeping soundly, has been for about an hour. We decided to drive down for the weekend after our Dr. appointment this morning. We had thought we might be at the hospital tomorrow getting a blood transfusion. However the blood work showed a hemoglobin of 8.9 which is border line for a transfusion but the Dr. gave Nan the choice and she decided to wait a few days. So we drove back home, Nan took a nap for awhile and I drove the Fiero down and picked up the motorhome from storage. After putting enough fuel in to cover this trip I drove home and packed it with food, medicine, medical devices, TPN, needles, tubes, blankets, pillows, towels, more food, computer and office files. When I went up to see Nan she was in terrible pain, she complained of her left nephrostomy. So I told her I would take a closer look, what I discovered made me ill. Background. The leg bags they send Nan home with from UCSF were terrible, poor quality, uncomfortable and unreliable. Nan found the number for her medical supply company and ordered out the right leg bags. I urged her to let me put on a better proper collection bag this morning on the left nephrostomy. I had already done so for the right one yesterday. That was at 8 am this morning. Then we loaded into the van, drove to Concord, saw the doctor and came back home and finally she went up to bed, all the time having worse and worse pain on her left side. What I discovered when I looked close was an extra white tab at the connection. Nan took one look and realized that when I pushed the fitting together I had not taken off the cap, she had gone 7 hours without any drainage from the left tube at all, totally plugged. When we removed the cap the kidney gushed out fluid and instantly her back pain began to improve. I felt so bad about missing the cap. I had never seen one before on the leg bag and did not expect one. But the pain had done its job on her, even with pain pills it took some time to get the pain behind her and fatigue set in.

Then she endured the rough freeway as we drove here. So she deserves her rest and sleep. What a courageous lady. She wanted to see Jason and Jo, its been a while since we got to see Jo, Jason was able to come up to UCSF and visit. When we arrived tonight Jo was here to welcome us and came and just hung out with us in the motorhome as I prepared the TPN. Jason was helping with a vesper service for the kids and came later. We hope Nikki, Steve and Keanna might be able to come visit tomorrow but realize it is a long ways to drive for a day trip, still we can hope.

Our visit with the Dr, oncologist was uneventful and not very helpful. We had to explain what had happened at UCSF since they have not communicated with each other. He was able to get a plan into motion to have a procreate type med for Nan which may help her put off so many transfusions, helps the body create red blood cells. Mostly the good news was that Nan's blood showed no infection, no spiking white cells, good balance of magnessium and other needed elements. So far this week we have had no fevers and in many ways it has been a very good week. Jan has totally spoiled Nan by giving her excellent foot massages. Now Nan hints at having her feet rubbed several times a day. Jan was such good help and great fun. We miss her terribly. Nan and I were talking and both of us had the same thought, it was like Jan was only with us 1 day, it all went by so fast.

We have the dogs with us on our trip and enough food to satisfy several hungry people. One must plan ahead.

As we reflect on God's blessings to us since last Friday night when Nan was released from the hospital we are indeed grateful. She has gotten to do many fun things, eaten lots of tasty foods, walked a lot, had good nights of sleep, is experiencing less leakage we think and enjoyed being home in her own bed with her own doggy, Starr and me. I guess you know which one is most important to her and does a better job of keeping her warm!

My prayer list this evening includes: Nan's recovery, stopping the leak, gaining strength and weight, resisting the return of GIST tumors. I long for Nan to have peace and to get rid of the 5th bag. This one has really gotten to her and I certainly understand that. The prayer list also includes reminding our clients to mail checks for the work we have finished. Its been a pretty dry week income wise and I know God is a great bill collector.

I want to thank Loree, our book keeper and my personal assistant for all the wonderful work she has done this week and Steve for his hard work and good appraisals. I am totally blessed with having these two wonderful helpers. New but much appreciated is Jean who writes reports for me. She has helped a great deal this week.

I'm signing off now, Nan is stirring and needs to have this keyboard go quiet. We send our love

tim and nan

Thursday, October 26, 2006

What if?

Dear Friends and Family,

Sometimes we are tempted to play the what if game, what if nan had not been struck by GIST, this rare cancer that has been her enemy for the past 10 years. What if this gifted young woman had been allowed to live her life as it was before? How would our present situation be different? Of course we would love to be without this disease and its brutal attack on her every waking moment, or course we would love to have Nan be able to enjoy life like she once did, free and active, independent and productive.

When I consider what Nan has had to endure, the hundreds of IVs, dozens and dozens of CT scans, 5 major surgeries, hundreds of units of blood, dozens of different medicines, days of nausea, thousands of miles on airliners flying to and from cancer centers, Houston, Boston, Portland, Sacramento, Duarte.... yet her spirit thrives. For those of you who know her well this is a precious privilege to see the human spirit endure in spite of terrible obstacles. Nan is demonstrating day by day how one lives when under constant pressure, pain, suffering. I consider it a very special privilege to be with her, to witness her courage and steadfastness day by day in spite of her present realities.

Today Nan has dealt with constant nausea since early, 4 am, this morning. What causes it? We don't know but we did Zophram at 4 and then again later in the morning. We actually had a long night of rest and slept in until nearly 8 am this morning, somewhat of a record for the two of us since sleep is usually over more like 5:30 or 6. We took Starr to the groomers in Brentwood to get her to a point where she smells less like a dog, important since she is with Nan 24/7 when Nan is not in the hospital. When we got home I took her up to bed for a nap and started to work. Later I ran back for Starr and she and I shared some french fries at In N Out. Then home to work some more. nan came down mid afternoon and we started finding things she might like to eat, green olives, nachos, soup, chips, cheetos, milk, more green olives. She went back up to bed around 9 and was very tired. We will find out tomorrow if she is due for a transfusion but if so we can't go back to John Muir since they stopped taking Blue Cross last Saturday. Today better leg bags arrived by Fed Express. The ones at UCSF were really bad so now she will be more comfortable.

Jan talked to us a couple times today, she beat the snow storm home but is experiencing the other side of the weather now in Denver while our weather here continues to be about as good as it gets, cool nights and decent days. Jan, thanks for all you did. I'm enjoying locating things in the pantry and kitchen and so far, everything I need I have found.

Nan and I get used to our present experience and don't dwell on how it could have been different. This is our reality and we attempt to make the best of it every day. I am impressed and inspired by Nan's courage, her spunk and her inner faith and spirit. When you call or when you drop a card like the one that came today from my sister Sibyl it brings light into our lives. Thanks for doing that. Nan lights up when her phone rings and she enjoys normal contact with people, hearing what is happening in their lives and the chance to share how she is doing. So please keep the contacts coming. They do make a big difference.

I do need some help for next monday. we are a place right now where Nan needs some assistance from time to time during the day. With the five bags she has to work with she cannot move about to freely. I am going to be out seeing properties in Dixon, Vacaville, Hercules and Vallejo on monday and I really need someone to drop by mid day and for the afternoon if possible. We might try to see Jason and Jo this weekend for an over night trip, not sure yet, havn't even checked with them yet. If you could help on monday please let us know.

I would ask once again for your continued prayers for Nan's healing. The leaking seems to be less today and we certainly hope that is a trend.

Good night or good morning depending on when you read this.

We are sending our love to you,

tim and nan

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

All too soon Jan flys home

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan has gone to bed anticipating a solid night of sleep. After last night when she was awake nearly every hour she is ready to sleep. Jan and Nan had a good morning while I was out appraising. They tackled replacing the wound cover / fluid drain system even though neither of them had ever done one before. nan had watched as wound care professionals changed the collection system before so she thought she could do it and they did it perfectly. While at it they also changed the other bags, Jan had a taste of medical procedures up close and personal. She did fine. Jan made muffins for breakfast and they turned out great. The kitchen sparkles and the counters have been reclaimed, Nan and I are both in awe!

This afternoon we had to head to Sac to the airport to get Jan to United. She boarded without any problem and phones when she arrived in Denver later. Nan made the trip in her bed in the back of the van. Jan sat in the back and rubbed Nan's feet while we drove. nan thought she was in heaven, loves her feet rubbed. When we got home we settled in, Nan in her recliner and me to the office. Son Steve had been working hard and had several reports ready to review and ship. Jean, my writer, had a report ready for me to review and finish which I did and shipped out, todays main had everything in it but money, not good.

Our visiting nurse came this evening to take blood for Nan's blood workup, we love to see her since she is the kindest and most professional nurse, we love her. I got Nan's TPN ready early tonight and Nan headed up to rest earlier than we have been going for the past few nights. We anticipate a good night.

Nan believes that the amount of leakage from her wound is less than before. I hope she is right. Please remember her in your prayers, she needs strength, healing, courage and peace.

sending love and deep appreciation to Jan for alllllll her help. Thanks Kara for sharing your mom!

tim and nan

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Celebrating Jan's Birthday

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan is finally in bed and probably already asleep. She had another big day. We drove to Napa and celebrated Jan's birthday. nan rested in the van bed both ways, had a nice lunch and has enjoyed herself but she is very tired tonight. Jan made dinner after we got home and Nan had garlic bread, green olives and nachos with peppers and cheese. Then she settled in to watch some TV and relax in her chair. I started her TPN earlier this evening so she could get a head start on her nutrition. I've got to tell you, Nan worked very hard today, she walked several long distances, sat for several hours at a time and really achieved a lot. She is an amazing woman.

Tomorrow is a bitter sweet day. Nan and Jan will get to spend time together but then in the evening Jan flys home and we are back to just the two of us. Yet we do well, the two of us and we do even better when we have loving family visit and help like Jan has helped. The last thing I saw a minute or two ago was Jan rubbing Nan's feet, that is love in action.

Nan's incision continues to leak fluid, sometimes less and sometimes more but not getting even close to healing yet. It is a real challenge to Nan to keep the special device covering the leaking wound in place without letting it leak, yet in spite of frustration with what she has to endure she is holding together really well.

Can we please pray again for Nan's healing tonight? I continue to have faith that God will handle things according to His plan. What are the lessons He has in mind for Nan and me? I know He cares.

We send our love

tim and nan and jan

Monday, October 23, 2006

The Talls come to town

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan is finally resting comfortably in her recliner now. She has had a big day. This morning she and Jan took Lady, my scottie to the groomers. The last time they really shaved her to a point of being almost ugly. This time she got a more conventional scottie cut and looks great and smells slightly less like a dog. Nan came home and rested for awhile. This afternoon she heard a friendly voice, its was Marilyn and Keith Tall, long time friends who now live in Canada and spend winters where it is warmer. They were passing through and took time out of their busy schedule to drop by to see Nan. turns out they are faithful readers of the blog and are totally up on Nan's recovery struggles.

The Talls were faithful members of the Tracy SDA church when nan and I were the pastors there. They were the kind of people pastors long to have in their churchs. They were solid, loving, faithful and great examples to the community. When they decided to retire back to Canada where Keith had grown up it was a huge loss to the church but many of us have maintained some contact with them as the years passed. They have continued to be very active in their church home in Canada and have three successful children who have established families. having the chance to visit with Keith and Marilyn is just great. Years ago when we first contemplated building our first home in Tracy Keith and Marilyn along with a couple other families helped us with the downpayment.

George Miller called and let us know that several Tracy friends were getting together at the Golden Corral this evening in Tracy. So Nan and Jan drove in and I met them there driving directly from my last appraisal appointment in Fremont. It was a very nice time getting together with young and old alike from Tracy SDA Church and to just get to spend time with Keith and Marilyn. As the meal progressed Nan began to fade, the many activities of the day began to get to her and so it was back to her bed in the back of the van and a sleepy ride home. She had enjoyed a visit from Mary this afternoon too. All in all it has been a very big day for Nan and thanks to Jan it has been a very successful one. Nikki and Keanna joined us at dinner tonight and Keanna immediatelly noticed that Nan had cut most of my hair off, Keanna thought it was funny, I just think it is great. No more wild look.

I spent the day inspecting properties and the day went very well for me too. I met some very nice people in 4 different properties. I was grateful for the opportunity to see the properties, back to work again. We'll have a nice day tomorrow celebrating Jan's birthday and then reluctantly see her on a plane Wed night for her return trip to Denver.

Nan continues to have some leakage so our immediate challenge continues. Please remember Nan in your prayers once again this evening. We are all thrilled that nan has been able to be up and active today. We are indeed grateful to our heavenly Father for His strength and healing power.

Todays high point was seeing Keith and Marilyn after such a long time, one of those special blessings. The photos are of Jan and Keanna, Jan, Nikki and Keanna and some of the people who gathered at the Golden Corral. Thanks George and Yvonne for making it happen.


tim and nan and jan

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Many blessings

Dear Friends and Family,

Sunday evening, nan is sitting in her faithful recliner enjoying a TV program with Jan. We just completed a wonderful feast with baked potatos Roxanna style, wow are they ever good, Nan had a quite a bit of potato with cottage cheese, sour cream, sea salt, olive oil and green olives on the side. We all enjoyed the good food. Earlier Nikki and Keanna dropped by for awhile and Jan, Nikki and Keanna searched and found the kitties and Keanna got to pet them, she is so nice to animals. After the girls left nan under Jans watchful eye gave me a haircut, I like it a lot and I really like that I saved about $30 bucks. Thanks ladies!

Nan has had a very big day with emotional ups and downs. Having to deal with the new bag is really tough. UCSF provided leg bags that are terrible in design and have connecting tubes that are very rough on the skin. Hopefully I will be able to find better ones tomorrow for Nan. Jan continues her quest for a clutter free place and boy does she have her work cut out for her. She has the counters as clean as when Sharon and Dana were here. They are beautiful and she the sinks and faucets gleaming too. The frig is getting cleared up and we are on a roll.

Tomorrow they take the doggies for a bath I think and hopefully Nan will feel up to visiting the Golden Corral tomorrow evening when our dear friends the Talls are traveling through on their way to Loma Linda. Several Tracy folk are going to see them at about 5 pm tomorrow evening. I have a very tight day planned with visits at several homes in Vallejo, Oakland, San Leandro, Fremont so I hope I can get home in time for us to go to Tracy, will certainly try.

It seems to nan and me that the leaking amount is less but we are not sure. what we can measure is less than in the past. How we would love to see that leaking diminish to nothing. Otherwise than that Nan is gradually improving. She looks good as you will see in the photograph I have attached taken this evening.

Thanks for your kindness and love and once again the help from afar has come to the hour it seems of when it is desperately needed and we thank the people involved for their help. Gradually one by one we are climbing back out of the pit but we've had a run of data and MLS fees to pay that take place once a year, taxes etc and we are finally caught up with AMEX after all the rental cars, hotels, meals, airline tickets bills. While we live in stressful times and sort of day by day we are grateful for God's help through it all.

I am praying for Irene who learns more about her most recent CT scan tomorrow. The waiting is never easy for any of us after a CTscan has been taken. It is our prayer that the results will be good and positive for Irene.

We also are thinking and praying for our friend Herb who has failed Sutent and must now search for other answers for growing tumors. We know how that feels and our hearts are with Herb and Kathy this week.

We hope all went well for Roger and Carol today as they moved people in and out of cabins at an amazing rate. Take it easy guys, you are not 20 years old anymore and you need to rest!!

I am signing off now. Just had a nice talk with Art, the ultimate Rose bush trimmer!

Let continue to pray for each other this evening

sending love

tim and nan and jan

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Saturday night in Discovery Bay

Dear Friends, Family and Faithful Blog Readers,

Its 10:15 and Nan is in her recliner, enjoying Jan's company and mentally preparing for bed. Overall this has been a good Sabbath (Saturday). We were allowed to leave UCSF last night about 7 pm and got loaded and out by 8:30. We arrived home before 10 and headed for bed. As you might imagine Nan was excited but very tired as well. Jan had arrived from Denver at 3:25 in Sac. we drove to Discovery Bay and traded for the van since we knew nan was being allowed to come home. Then we fought traffic to the city taking over 2 hours to do a trip that is ideally about 1 hour plus a few minutes. In the morning on friday doctors from both the surgery team and urology had consulted with us urging a take it slow approach to the leaking. They let us know that is they did a balloon or coil in nan's right uriter that it was non reversible. They urged taking a few weeks to see if the flow would lessen. We asked in unison, 3 to 4 weeks in the hospital, they smiled and said no, we could go home today but keep them up to speed on the flow amount.

Nan had a good night last night with a few times of waking for pain meds or needing bags emptied. We did not get up until after 8 this morning. I can't begin to explain how wonderful it was to be able to look over in the dark and see Nan's form slowly breathing or hear her rustle in her sleep. It was magic to have her home once again after nearly 3 weeks. This morning Nikki let me know she was taking Keanna to Tracy to the special Sabbath School in the park for Keanna's Sabbath School division. I hurried over and we had a wonderful time in the park with a good program, fun activities and crafts, nice treats and perfect weather. Then to Olive Garden for lunch, then back home to welcome Bob and Carrol from Lodi who came bearing a chocolate pie. Their visit was great and the pie was pretty nice too. Thanks so much Bob and Carrol. Carrol is looking so good and we were delighted to hear about her current health status in dealing with her cancer. She is doing well and enjoying life.

While they were still visiting Nikki and Keanna came over, perhaps Nikki smelled the pie and we all had a good time catching up on gossip. Bob and Carrol are very close friends with Jan's parents and Jan knows them very well so photo books came out and a phone call was made to Aunt Ann and Uncle Jim and everybody got to say hello. Then they all left, Nikki and Keanna to a birthday party in Tracy and Bob and Carrol for a much needed rest at home. Nan and I rested for a bit and Jan took on the kitchen. Once again it shines, I mean really shines. Then she took a shopping list and was able to find her way to the Safeway and back, better than the 6 mile run this morning when she lost her way and was without a way back for a couple hours. Kind people brought her home. She had never seen Discovery Bay in the daytime and had no idea of where things were.

Our visiting nurse was kind enough to come over this evening and bring a new weeks supply of TPN for Nan and to get up to date on Nan's condition and status medically. She found Nan to have a 100 degree temp. which we were not happy to discover. Terri is such a dear person and she always helps us with everything. Finally she left to join her husband and we settled in to snack, watch TV and to try again to make the laptop work properly. This morning when I sat it up I didn't plug it in right away and the battery failed. Well a file got lost and the email will not work now or I would have blogged much sooner. I have tried many times to uninstall the mail program and then reinstall it but it will never quite complete the uninstall so I am stuck. Guess I will have to turn to my miracle worker Jim with I Net computers to solve yet another problem. He always comes through and has for years.

Nan is very tired this evening and now has her TPN bag going. She bagged some cheetos and green olives a bit ago and a popsickle.

We are thankful to be home and the output of the leak has been very low today. For that we are grateful but we certainly are not proclaiming the leak healed yet.

Please pray for Nan's health, her leaking wound, her GIST disease, her various aches and pains and for her appetite.


tim and nan

Friday, October 20, 2006

Friday continued....

Not sure what happened but I'm told only my headline got sent out.

Nan is resting well after her bath. Doctors say we might be able to go home today. They want to wait a couple weeks or more to see if the body can heal the leak on its own. So for now we wait but we have contacted the discharge planner and crescent home health care just in case this thing can happen.

Right now I am heading out to move my car, its been two hours and the parking cop can give a big ticket if you stay to long. Nan had a good night and has talked to Irene who had a CT scan yesterday and we are all holding our breath until the results are in on monday. You are in our prayers Irene for sure.

Things are on the move here, Dr. Yee is here right now in the hall about to talk to us. The discharge planner has already been here and poor Nikki, she purchased and had shipped something for her mom three days ago and it got lost, now it is supposed to arrive today.

So the day begins, the planner, the nurse practiciner all are working hard to get things arranged for our leaving this evening.

Now I have to settle down, get up to Sac., get my very long hair cut somewhere, trade the bug for the van, try to get a little work done along the way. I will say this, for the past year life has not been boring, it is very terrifying at times, usually stressful, never time to relax or kick back, not even enough time to get the basics done but the positive side is there too. Nan and I have got to spend a lot of time together whether in Boston, on a plane, in a hospital room, we have had a great chance to spend time with our kids and especially with Keanna, enjoyed our friends on the phone and in person, had some home time and have seen God's hand touching Nan over and over again. It has been quite a year. We can't express loud enough how much we appreciate your involvement with us, you have helped with emails, phone calls, visits and financial help. You have reminded us over and over again that God is in charge and calmed our troubled nerves helping us find peace. This is not a fun experience to pass through but we are all making it day by day. We treasure our kids so much and they have been wonderful to us.

I hope this blog message gets out, the last one I wrote was lost somewhere. I'm blogging now because there are so many miles ahead for me today that I'm not sure when I will once again sit at a computer. So we leave this day with God and trust Him to lead out once again.

Thanks for your continuing love and prayer. Nan is taking calls today if you would like to say hi. Her room number is 415 353 7433.

love from room A427

tim and nan

Friday morning- we might be going home

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Thursday evening - end of a very good day!

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan is watching Survivor and has just returned from a long walk. This was her second walk today and she is strong and feeling pretty good. Art and Connie came to visit today and were still here when I got here this evening at around 7 pm. They played Mexican dominos, talked, snacked and played some more. Nan really enjoyed having them here and it helped pass the day in a very pleasant manner. I got to walk out with them to their car and thank them for their coming up to visit. Then when I came back in the elevator decided to take a vacation. So I finally came back up in the staff elevator.

Nan had a very good night last night with lots of sleep and rest. She had a good day too. So far we have not heard anything about the next step but since the flow of the leak continues unabated we think they will have to consider doing something else. Perhaps we will learn more tomorrow about planned procedures. They have waited all week in hopes that the leaking would diminish on its own, it has not. Other than the leaking Nan is doing very well. She now has no antibiotics, is eating some food at every meal and some inbetween, has not been running a fever, has good pain control.

I worked here until 10, left for Modesto which turned out to be a 1 hour and 45 minute trip, enjoyed doing an inspection on a cute property which included 3 giant tortoises, a bunny rabbit, a huge Saint Bernard, a rangy poodle, a large above ground pool with green water, a collection of coffee grinders, strange indeed. As I found the freeway onramp I spied a Sonic. So one yummy grilled cheese sandwich and a large order of tator tots later I was once again on the road. This time to our home in Discovery Bay where mail was stacked up and Loree had laid out work needing my attention. I settled in to write an appraisal that was needed and overdue. Got that done and then turned to the checkbook to write a few checks and enter them into our Quicken system. That done I loaded up and headed to STeve's place to see a very wonderful Keanna, she launched herself into my arms with a cry of Grampie, so precious. Then fill the tank of diesel and headed back to SF. Good run with minimal traffic in the city itself. As I mentioned Art and Connie were still here so we visited a bit and then they had to hit the road.

Now we are winding down in the room, got hot tea for Nan and hot mocha for me, checked email messages and did the big walk with Nan. Now she is getting ready to sleep. She has had a great day. Tomorrow will be a special day, at 2:30 in the afternoon Jan is arriving at Sacramento from Denver. She is Nan's cousin and a great friend as well. She will stay with us until next wednesday. That will allow me to do a bit more work and Nan will not be alone.

We sure appreciate having the room to stay on 27th. Kathy and Brad have been very kind to allow me to stay at their home. It has saved me many late night trips back home to Discovery Bay. Thanks so much.

Thank you for remembering Nan in your prayers. Please continue to seek God's healing and His will for Nan and the current leaking problem.


tim and nan

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Wednesday evening in San Francisco

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan is drifting in and out of sleep as I blog. I just got here at 9:15 after a day of running and driving a couple hundred miles. Now I am back where I want to be, with her highness. She had a nice afternoon with Irene Wing who came to visit. Irene is an incredible person with so much wisdom and faith to share that time spent with her is very special. While she was here Nan had equipment breakdowns in her colostomy and the collection system over her wound. She and Irene walked up and down the halls, talked and enjoyed their time together. Nan says the doctors came to visit but had nothing new to mention. For the first time in a couple days she had a tiny fever this evening. They have removed all antibiotics to prevent her body getting used to them in case we need them again in the future. Her TPN will be here pretty soon and she says her pain is better managed now with the patch and the pump that she can activate when she needs it.

We just got a call from Art and Connie telling us that they are willing to come up and visit tomorrow. So about noon Nan will have company again. Since I leave at 10 for a noon appointment in Modesto tomorrow that will be very much appreciated. I'd love to see them also but may not make it back soon enough for that.

Nan and I got a call from Loree this morning to tell us a substantial check had arrived from the church. It comes at a very crucial time since we just filed our taxes and owed the state some money. We deeply appreciate this thoughtful help and we will sleep better tonight knowing about it. We have never experienced anything like this before but fortunately work is picking up and we are finally getting checks from lenders.

I drove to Fairfield this morning to see a property, then to Tracy for a much needed oil change for my diesel bug, then to Discovery Bay to see a very nice home, then at the desk to do some work and comp checks, then leave at 8 to drive back to SF arriving here at 9:15 to a parking place directly in front of the hospital. Now some quiet and calm time with Nan and then off to the much appreciated bed over on 27th Ave.

In the morning its back here for some together time and then leave at 10 for a trip to Modesto for an appraisal, then back for some more together time.

We wish something was happening wound wise but so far things are the same, lots of leaking urine and no action yet to attempt to stop it. We got wonderful news tonight, Jan, Nan's niece from Denver is coming for a few days to visit. She is more like a younger sister and Nan is thrilled to have her coming to visit. Once again family comes through and we love it.

I think we need to just keep on with our prayers for Nan's body to heal. The care here is very good but its not home, not even close. When the leaking finally stops then we will be able to go home and perhaps be back on course for recovery. I can only hope for better days for Nan and soon. She certainly deserves them.

So we send our love to each of you and our deep appreciation for the tremendous financial boost we received today.


tim and nan

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Tuesday evening - winding down

Dear Friends and Family,

Our nurse Mary is here getting Nan set for the night, hanging her TPN, making sure the pain meds are in order and taking vitals. Nan is munching cheetos and getting her Lovenox shot in her back side. Munching cheetos because they forgot to bring her Gleevec until just now and the meal was hours ago. Gleevec and food are supposed to be done together, good luck in the hospital.

Yes the wound is still continuing to leak and I am writing now to ask that you pray that God will slow the leak to a trickle and then to nothing. We have seen God stop bleeding, stop GI bleeding and we sure need this leak to cease.

We are heading to sleep now. Good night or morning my friends.

Jan, when are you coming? We'd love to see you!

love to each and every one of you

tim and nan

Tuesday evening - slow day - pain - still leaking!

Dear Friends and Family,

Yesterday was a high day and today was pretty low. Nan has suffered with lots of pain and 12 hours of nausea. At the moment things have settled down and Nan is resting, perhaps even sleeping after a 1/4 of a garden burger, vegetable soup, ice tea with lemon. She has been the subject of learning for a nursing student so she has put up with constant learning today, even to her Lovenox shot, the learning team was in her room until about 11:30 last night, its OK but tiring when you don't feel all that well.

Nan's wound continues to leak fluid, some think it is slightly less, I doubt it frankly. The urologists are hoping that the right uriter will close up and plug itself like the left one had already done. I am wondering why it would. It just got the stent out of the inside and now has room to flow freely and no tumor pressure to mash it closed, why would it close at all? The official decision is to wait and see if the flow lessens. I keep asking how long the wait and Nan has told me to stop asking them that question so I'll bow out. I just long to see a dry wound and know that her body is no longer getting packed with stray fluid going where it is not needed.

Nan slept pretty well last night but woke with nausea which has been with her off and on all day. Late morning she feel asleep and managed a couple hours before lunch. She has just not been that happy today but has gotten better this evening. Her left nephrostomy has caused a lot of pain last night and today, this is typical after they are replaced. She did eat lunch today and some dinner tonight too.

Nan has had many wonderful phone calls today which helped the day pass for her. I left about 2.30 for Berkeley and then Oakland to see properties. Of course when I got to Oakland I found a duplex instead of the single family property I was supposed to see so all the research was worthless and I'll have to go back again with duplex data. Happens but sure does not make one happy. On the way back I found a CostCo right next to the freeway offramp and found a orchid for Nan, beautiful flower, hot drink mocha for me and a slice of pizza for dinner. Then back to Post street to park after the parking meters were off for the day. Now I am blogging and Nan just woke up so she is ready to walk and when Nan decides to walk we had better do it.

I might write more later but right now we walk.

Please keep us in your prayers, we know where the leak is but so far it still leaks.

with love

tim and nan

Monday, October 16, 2006

Great news!!

Dear Friends and Family,
What a day this has been. Nan is resting and watching Wheel of Fortune as she reflects on the success of this day. As I mentioned before her nephrostomies were replaced with new ones and dye was introduced in an attempt to discover where the leaking was taking place. The Drs discovered two leaking points in her illilal loop, sorry for the poor spelling on this. They also discovered that the left uriter is blocked while the right uriter with the stent is allowing fluid to pass from the kidney into the illilal loop. Since the loop is leaking the goal is to try to stop the flow in the right uriter basically preventing the illilal loop from having any fluid in it at all. The kidneys will be drained by the nephrostomy tubes which are new and ready to go.

This evening a team of urologists came to the room and expressed how clear the pictures were from earlier in the day. They looked things over and left to return about 30 minutes later with a scope, wire, saline solution, drapes and set to work. They inserted the long black wand with the bright light on the end down Nan's urostomy searching for the stent. In a few minutes they found it, grasped it with the long wire and pulled it out. Now they hope that the right uriter will just close on its own preventing urine from making it to the illilal loop. So for the next couple days we watch the amount of fluid coming out of the wound. If it does not lessen then they will place a ballon or coil device in the right uriter in an attempt to clog it. So for now we are very grateful for the success of this day. Nan is feeling great, ate a part of a garden burger and had soup tonight along with hot tea. She is sore from the work that has been done to her but very relieved that a plan is being carried out to help her back onto the important road to recovery. We think she might be allowed to come home on Friday but of course we are not sure yet.

Let me tell you we are very very relieved and thankful tonight. God has chosen to help Nan once again and we feel good. Thank you each and every one for your calls and help today. This has turned out to be a very good day indeed.

This morning when I was thanking people I did a very dangerous thing, that is I left out someone very important, that is Barb and Gerry Lammerding, as you know they have helped us over and over again and we want them to know how much we do appreciate them.

I also want to thank Jason for coming to visit this afternoon. His visit was great and lifted our spirits a lot. Our kids are really special to us and we are so grateful for them every day.

Tonight please join us in thanking God for yet another special day. Do we face issues, sure do, will there be other hard days? Yes afraid so. Yet tonight we are rejoicing, right now Nan is talking to Keanna on the phone who having had her bath and is on her way to bed. Nan beams when she talks to Keanna and Nikki, fun stuff.

We send our love to each and every one of you. Thank you Barbara from Houston for your kind email. So prayer warriors, thanks again for your special prayers in Nan's behalf.

tim and nan

Leak located

Dear Friends and Family,
Nan is sleeping a deep sleep right now after going through a rough experience at the hand of the interventional radiologists. We are back in the room and she is safely tucked into her bed. The process took a couple of hours and involved replacing the nephrostomy tubes which had been there much too long and were stuck in place requiring a lot of effort and time to get them out. Then when the new ones were installed they put in dye to see where the flow was taking place. They found left uriter was blocked, no surprise there and right one to have the stent and some fluid still getting through it in spite of the old stent. The radiologist said the leak was taking place from the tube which extends up to the urostomy. Now it is up to the urology team to figure out how to deal with this situation. We have not heard from them yet. While Nan was in the room we had a nice surprise, Jason called to say he was on the way. He had rerouted his schedule and came here. We had lunch at a deli across the street and now we are back in the room and Nan is awake. We are enjoying a nice time with good conversation. Our room is quiet and the nursing staff continues to be attentive.

I'm going to send this out now and write more later so people can know what is happening.

Sending love and thanks for your prayers,


tim and nan and jason

Monday morning - what is to come?

Dear Friends and Family,

Its monday morning, Nan is in deep sleep right now due to the premedicating. She is allergic to the idodine contrast they will use today to try to find the leak. Benedryl and pretisone are given in advance which offsets her reaction. We have done this for years but she is enjoying a deep sleep as a result. I am happy to see her sleep knowing what is ahead for her today. My heart is so troubled as I anticipate yet another day of sitting in waiting rooms and standing in the hall as these procedures are done to the one I have loved for 37 years. Truely there is no one in the world like Nan, the better you know her the more you will agree with that comment. She is wonderful mixture of steel, satin, humor, gentleness, dedication, loveliness, energy, excitement, compassion. She is deep and careful, she is the ultimate good friend and can keep secrets forever safe in her heart. Our entire family has been guided and loved by her through the years and she is like no one else.

I remember when we were first married how she would help me, I would get excited and talk too loud and too much at parties or gettogethers. I would feel her soft hand on my knee and if I ignored it then it would begin to grip harder and harder until I realized my behavior needed changing. No one else ever knew but in this gentle way she helped me rein in my enthusiasm and let others speak. It is vintage Nan, caring without drawing any attention to herself at all.

So today we face yet another chapter in our long battle with GIST. It has been said that when one person in the family has cancer the whole family is effected. As I look back over the past 10 years I once again realize how precious our family and extended family is. Our children and their spouses have been as solid as rocks in their support and love to us. They have faced this cancer with determination and constant love and involvement. How we treasure them and their constant expressions of love and support. Like Steve and Keanna popping in the other night after the zoo. No one told them they had to do that but it made a big difference in how Nan felt as she drifted off to sleep. Jo's gift of the cashmere scarf, Nan has it here at the hospital with her, she loves it. Nikki's calls, her dropping in to fix dinner, her buying special treats for me to eat when I'm out traveling and the beautiful photo albums and exciting pictures of Keanna. Jason keeping Nan up to date on what is happening at MBA, his surprise visits when he can get away, his orchids. Sharon and Dana traveling across the country to be with Nan over and over again, daily phone calls. They make a big difference. There is Aunt Ann, our prayer warrior with calls and emails, Nan loves her and appreciates her so much. Calls from David, Joe make the time pass and are a delight to her. There is Mary from travel, with a heart of love, Pam, her long time friend and frequent hospital visitor, Irene her newer friend and fellow GISTer who has gone all out to help Nan in every way and so many more of you who let her know you are praying for her. Roxanna and Rick who live in Conn. have been wonderful support and Nan enjoys hearing from her often. Then there is Loree who carries a heavy load for the business while we are away, we could not survive without her and Ken and Leann who watch over things and help with the books. We are very blessed.

We have our special friends in N Carolina Roger and Carol and special friends in Lodi Bob and Carrol. Nan reads every message they send to the blog and is lifteded by it.

We have no idea what this day will bring but after over a week of inaction in Concord we are thankful is a scared way to finally have something be done. Scared because there are always chances of things going wrong, scared because perhaps the fix is not possible or the leak is too hidden to find. Scared because todays CT scans may show more tumor growth. Nothing is certain today but we will face it like we have faced everything else holding each others hands, like Nan said the morning she got up and drove me to the hospital ER, we are a team. Please pray that this team can have a win today, not a shutout.

I will try to blog when I can today, I have no idea of schedule today but will be here as long as I can before having to race home and sign the tax filing. Then back here again.

Can you please just stop and pray a simple prayer for God's guidance and healing today for Nan.
We thank you very much,


tim and nan

ps Jan, we'd love to have you come visit anytime you can!!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Slow sunday with friends

Dear Friends and Family,

It is 9:23 pm, Nan is settling in after a rousing afternoon of friendship, snacking and some Gin Rummy. Nan taught Irene and Pam but they thanked her by winning. Late afternoon they went to find some Mexican food nearby and Nan rested and talked to Sharon who also wishes she were here but is stuck in beautiful south Texas.

When I got home last night I dealt with the cat box, time to empty its little bin, thank you Pam for this wonderful device, an electric cat box, no it does not stun the cats, just waits until they are done and then combs the goodies out of the litter and into a little bin and then closes a door over the bin, amazing device and it has taken the whole odor out of the house. I love it. Then I sat down and while sipping a mocha wrote an appraisal that was overdue. Then at 11 went to bed and back up at 6 this morning to complete the appraisal and do research for today. Of course one of the MLS boards would not work at all this morning and after a few minutes of trying I gave up and went to a back up source of data. I met two very nice families and very homey properties both with larger sites than others in the areas. First I went to lovely downtown Newman and then cross country on little roads to Waterford. Then more back roads to Taco Bell, then to Highway 99, then to Discovery Bay, empty the tanks on the motorhome, take it back to storage, drive Fiero home, pack needed items, hit the road for Brentwood, pick up meds, drove appaisals off at Jeans and then settle in for drive to SF. Just a bit over an hour and I arrived to find Pam and Irene winding up and getting ready to head home. I walked each of them to their cars and now its just Nan and me relaxing. Mom ate her whole bag of cheetos which I snuck in to her and share the rest of the garden burger with me.

Tonight I stay nearby so I can be here early tomorrow to be with Nan through things she has going tomorrow. Nan is talking to Jason to see if he could come tomorrow but he can't, has appointments and we totally understand how that is. Mom was just trying to find someone to be with me while she is in procedures, she thinks I tend to get emotional, what ever made her think that?

We are really praying that God will guide the doctors as they do CTs with dye and things like that to locate the LEAK. We don't know exactly what to expect tomorrow but while we are apprehensive we are also hopeful. I will blog when I can tomorrow with updates but only when Nan can spare me being away from her for a minute or two.

We sure want to thank Steve for his surprise visit last night. Early evening we got a call from Steve and he and Keanna had just left the zoo here in SF. They came by and Nan got to see Keanna for a few minutes. It was the most wonderful ending to a slow day and we both loved it. Thanks STeve for your wonderful thoughtfulness and for sharing Keanna.

Please pray for Nan tonight. How we long to rejoin the path to recovery! Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers tomorrow as she endures these various invasive procedures. Oh that God would help us in His mighty ways.

Just know, we are OK, we are hanging in and we lean on each other and we really appreciate talking to you. Today Art and I talked for a long time as I drove down Highway 5 and Nikki called mom this morning, Jason this evening and Sharon this afternoon.

We send you our love and thanks,

tim and nan

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Nan is doing well today in San Francisco

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan is reading and waiting for her lunch to arrive. It is 12:30 on Sabbath. She has had a good day so far. When I arrived this morning she was on a gurney heading for Xray. I got to see the xray results but of course had almost no idea of what I was looking at. I could see the nephrostomy tubes and stent but did not recognize much else other than Nan's bone structure and several lighter and darker areas in her torso. The tec told me that the xrays were not very helpful in locating urine leaks since urine does show up in a xray at all. I think they did them just to aware of anything unusual in her body and as a basis for other more intense tests to be done on monday. He took the xrays and then slide the film cassette into a slot and the xrays were read and instantly showed on a computer screen. Then he called for transportation and the guy was at the door in a minute. In the past we have waited for up to 30 minutes for someone to take her back, nice to get back to her warm and comfortable bed.

In the last few minutes the charge nurse came with the pca pump. Now when Nan begins to feel pain she pushes a button and a tiny bit of pain med, dilatud, is released into her IV. The hope is that she will never get into intense pain that way, intense pain pushes her heart rate up to nearly 120 beats a minutes, higher than is desirable. As you may recall her heart rate is always about 100 even when resting, it has been that way for years and we don't know why. She has been allowed to restart Gleevec again and took her full 600 yesterday. What a relief to get the meds back in that may hold off tumors and control the growth of the one we know is there lurking.

Breakfast did not turn out so well. Nan is very sensitive to odors when she is on meds and in a hospital. She was doing well with oatmeal when she took the lid off the hot food. Suddenly the odor of eggs and bacon overwhelmed her and she lost the oatmeal she was eating and her breakfast came to an end. But she recovered quickly with no left over vomiting or problems like that. Now they just brought in lunch and whoops it is fish, she hates the smell of fish so they took that away and are trying for chicken, not much better, we need to be able to order but so far no menus or visit from the nutritionist. Promised yesterday but she didn't make it to our room. They started TPN last night about 11 pm so her basic nutrition is assured for today.

Irene arranged with her sister who lives nearby that I could stay there. I enjoyed a restful night until early this morning when our present situation overwhelmed my sleep so I tossed and turned for the rest of the waking hours. The room and bath where I stay are wonderful, newly remodeled and very appealing. I am able to come and go by opening the garage door so won't disturb them so much. I plan to head home tonight, do research for tomorrow and then see properties all over the place before coming back to see Nan in the evening. Irene has kindly consented to come sit with Nan yesterday afternoon after church and that is a great relief to us. I do not believe it is proper to leave Nan alone for hours at a time and I appreciate anyone who can call or visit. It helps Nan's time pass and improves her spirits as well. Our children who normally can come visit are both totally committed this weekend and we totally understand. They live extremely busy lives and do a lot of good where they work.

Nan's lunch finally got sorted out. She has carton of milk, roll, brown rice, brochili, chicken and two little bowels of chicken and noodle soup, two new potatos and a fruit cup. Pretty good really, better than the fish we started with. We believe fish need to be in the water. Nan has had some and is now full, when a person in on TPN they never really develop much of an appetitite. Yet Nan is eating very well considering.

Now she is finished and is trying to understand how the pca works, she does not feel the immediate rush of relief from the pain that she got before when they pushed in 1 mg of pain med. I think she will adjust to the new way of controlling pain.

So we sit / lie watching the clock move slowly ahead. A few minutes ago Bob and Carrol came on the instant messenger and we were able to talk for awhile. They were on their way out to Lyons for lunch and are feeling pretty good after the latest round of chemo. Such good news for them. Irene called earlier and Nan got to talk with her for awhile. For a few minutes the sun came out breaking through the gloom. From our room we look directly to that very high TV tower with three poles poking to the sky located on the top of a small mountain in the city. We can watch the clouds move through the towers, pretty amazing. We are only a few miles from the ocean and so we have the fog and ocean weather here.

We just got back from a walk to the elevator and then to the lobby where Nan sat for a few minutes watching the cold world outside. Finally she tired and we came back up. When we got back menus were waiting in the room so Nan just filled them out and perhaps she will get food that is closer to her tastes. No more fish or bacon please.

Nan is wrestless today, that happens sometimes when pain meds sort of get backed up in her system and the pain she has right now is fairly intense. She just called the nurse to see what can be done about her pain level. This will be interesting.

I had hoped she could fall asleep after we got back but she does not feel like sleeping at this minute. Too much pain. The nurse came and did a bolis, that is a large amount .6 mg of med to help Nan get caught up with the pain. We did not push the pain button on the whole walk and the pain caught up with her suddenly. This intense pain is a new issue again, nothing this strong over in concord. It is pretty well controlling her right now. Emily called a minute ago and they spoke for a little bit. Thanks emily for thinking of her. Just spoke to Pam and she is not feeling that well but if she improves she might come over later, my instructions were pretty bad and before I talk to her again I'd better have street names to help her.

I think Nan might be settling down now for a nap, she really needs one, so upset and restless right now.

This is a hard day, not that any are easy lately but Nan is really effected by the looming tests on monday, that is my read of things. We have a pretty good confidence level in the various doctors that have been here, several are a part of Dr. Warren's surgical team but are very attentive and are directing her care very carefully. For example the nurse just brought in a breathing device that she wants Nan to blow into. We have not seen one of those for awhile but we know they are good at keeping the lungs clear. They are carefully monitoring her temp levels and are measuring her ins and outs liquid wise to guard against dehydration. Nan is not feeling as well today as she has been over the last few days. She is not happy and troubled most of the time.

It is difficult to keep ones spirits up facing a future that is not clear. Yet it is our choice to trust in God and allow Him to lead. My feelings are often miles behind my convictions and I live in a state of emotional upheaval bouncing from one emotion to the next. However through it all I choose to be with Nan as much as I can be, to help her as much as I can and to be a helper to her on all levels. She should certainly have no doubts as to my devotion to her. I long for her to have hope again, to feel better, to be moving forward and this coming week is vital for her recovery. I feel like we should have a prayer and annointing service for her but perhaps each of you can pause a moment and seek God's special help on her behalf. God has promised to remember His children and Nan is a loyal child of His.

So we send this blog with our love, we wish we could be with you, anywhere but in a hospital.

tim and nan

Friday, October 13, 2006

Friday evening in SF

Dear Friends and Family,

Its 9:30 and our day is winding down. We have just been visited by two surgical people on Dr. Warren's team. They were great and had Nan tell the whole story from the beginning of her GIST experience. Earlier we were visited by two urologists who laid out a plan for monday which will include introduction of dye into each side of Nan's system, xrays and CT related scans tracking the flow of liquid. All of this is an attempt to locate where the leak is taking place. Then a plan will be put into place to block or seal the leak. No one is suggesting that the processes are going to be easy or for sure. We certainly would appreciate your prayers in nan's behalf as we move forward seeking a solution. There is some general talk of getting Nan off TPN in the future, speaking of which no TPN has appeared yet this evening, bummer. A little while ago we walked and Nan did great charging down the hallways and I tried to keep up without hitting her ankles with the tower for her IVs.

Her trip over was uneventful, her room is quiet and the nurses are great and very kind. She has had a double lunch and her dinner was not to shabby tonight. She let them know she would like a regular menu, not the strained stuff from Concord. So far she is doing well with the sandwich, the mashed potatoes and the other things like Cheetos she has had. I am about to leave now hoping I still have a car in one piece since it is parked on the street with Nan's wheel chair inside and my suitcase with my breathing machine, hope it is still there. I drove over and met Kathy, Irenes sister who is kindly letting me stay at their home for a few nights. It is relatively nearby and will offer an alternative to driving all the way home tonight.

We hope for a quiet sabbath tomorrow with time to rest and have quiet talks and short walks. We are told that there will be xrays tomorrow but they don't take long at all. Well to all of you who have offered encouragement and urged us to be patient, well we are here and settled in and we are feeling pretty good about this place and the level of concern and care. We have no complaints at all. Thank you for your support over the past few days.

We send our love and seek your prayers yet again for Nan's leaking, for Nan's general health and for Nan's recovery. We are very grateful for God's hands in everything.


tim and nan
ps, thanks for the phone calls, they really help to pass the time for Nan.

Friday morning - we hear we are on the move...

Dear Friends and Family,

I got here about 7:20 this morning, early for me. Phone calls are being made and UC is anxious to get Nan to room 419 at Mt Zion Hospital. But of course the patient coordinator is off today and someone else is covering for her and is NOT HERE YET. Errrr. The charge nurses have been so helpful, way out of their way to assist and we are pushing hard to get them to call the transport vehicle. The sooner to UC, the sooner active care can begin. And so we once again wait.

I have put off making appointments all week because of the lack of knowing when Nan would be transferred. Of course I want to be at the hospital when any procedure is done on her and we have not known what was happening. Nan and I have a request to you, we plan to have me seeing properties on sunday and are asking, can someone come and sit with Nan for part of the day. Nikki is buried this sunday and cannot come, she like us has to get taxes filed and she took last weekend to come be here in the room and put off the final tax prep so we fully understand that she will be having a blast with the tax program on sunday. If someone could come to Mt Zion and be with Nan for a bit then I would feel better about venturing out to see properties. Of course if they decide to do procedures on sunday I will be there and move the appointments. In my briefcase at the moment I have appraisals to do in Novato, Tracy, Newman, Oakland and a few other places.

The patient coordinator just arrived so perhaps soon......

Please keep us in your prayers today,


tim and nan

Thursday, October 12, 2006

No room in the inn tonight

Dear Friends and Family,
This will be a brief message. Leann just came in to tell us that she was not able to move Nan today. No bed available so they will try again in the morning. My first reaction was not very nice. But fortunately I kept it to myself. We were told last friday that this place had nothing to offer and we have been trying to get into UC every since. Meanwhile the insurance will be paying another $82,000 for this weeks stay. Amazing.

Nan slept for two hours after the pain meds were given and she has just gotten some more now. We will walk later. We will have anice evening together here in good old 3123. The room is nice and the people are great to us, just there is nothing being done to help Nan get better and we are off Gleevec, the only thing that prevents new tumors. Sure hard to leave things in the Lords hands when it involves someone you love with the whole heart.

We will share more when we know more. We know from experience that hospitals do not like friday admissions and often nothing gets done for the entire weekend. Lets hope that is not thecase this time. We are being told we willbe at the Mt Zion hospital a part of the UC system.

Sending our love and if you get a chance why not call Nan on her cell. 925 354 7677. Thanks so much

tim and nan

Thursday afternoon report, we might move at 5 pm!!

Dear Friends and Family,

The word is that we move at around 5 pm today. However that is only if they find a bed at UC, we now have a doctor and everything is in order but we need a bed before the transportation people will step in and move Nan.

Nan had a very good night other than a fever for which they gave tylenol. She slept at one point nearly 6 hours without pain meds breaking up the sleeping time. She has been talking on the phone and when I arrived she mentioned that the collecting bag they have on her wound to catch the fluid was leaking. She had a good lunch and ordered seconds of the soup. Then the wound care nurse came, she is a total dear person, thoughtful, attentive and very good at what she does. She put on a new device to catch the fluid so Nan is ready to travel if the word comes down. Nan needed a second dose of dilatud during the dressing change, lots of pulling things off the skin etc. So as you might imagine she is very much asleep now and will be for some time. She has enjoyed calls from Dana, Sharon and Jason in the last little while.

I am beginning to believe that they may actually move her and we appreciate Dr. Bertagnolli and Dr. Warren for helping this move take place. Dr. Morgan was kind enough to call our oncologist about the Gleevec and they have decided on a plan that the Gleevec starts the next day after whatever procedures are done to stop the leak. Thank you Dr. Morgan.

I am trying to cope with a few appraisal issues this afternoon and will then drive over in my own car to SF. I may be able to stay the night with Irene's sister who lives nearby. That would be very helpful. If Nan gets moved tonight then perhaps they can start doing some procedures on her tomorrow. We know that not much gets done over weekends but we hope they will be able to do something to help her get better. I am blogging now because once the move starts to happen I have no idea of how things will shake out. Nan and I both really appreciate your many special prayers about moving and about healing this leaking. We feel very supported. Art is a special friend who I can talk to anytime. My brother Jerry often calls and keeps up with what is happening. Lately Sibyl, my sister who lives in Ohio, has been catching me on the instant messenger connected to my computer. I have spoken to her the last two mornings. She sent us a card with a check and I was very humbled. I know she is retired and can ill afford to be giving away money and we are deeply touched for her help. What a strange sensation to be on the receiving end of so much love and support. I just can't wait to turn it around. It is harder to receive than to give let me tell you.

Well I am going to sign off now. I really hope we get to move today, we will see and we will allow God to do His timing thing once again.

We send our love, our appreciation, our hearts to you all. Please continue to remember this sweet lady with the huge heart of courage in your prayers.

sending our love

tim and nan

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Disappointing Wednesday - God is still there

Dear Friends and Family,

Its 11:05, just got home from the 45 min. drive from Concord and the hospital. Nan was ready to fall asleep when I left shortly after 10. I took her walker back in from the car so we could walk and she was ready when I got there at 8. Why are we still in Concord? Well I'm not sure.....

We thought we would see Nan moved to UCSF this morning by ambulance. However when I got there I was told that the move had been put on hold due to someone somewhere suggesting that nan was to have procedures done in Concord. True there were no orders written and no one seemed to know who put the move on hold. Shortly after I arrived and talked to LeAnn, the person who arranges moves to other hospitals, Dr. Shoba (first name, I can't pronounce or spell her last name) our oncologist came to the room. She explained that when she had finally spoken to a urologist at UCSF he had given her a list of things we wanted to have done to and for Nan while she was in Concord. Most would have been done by interventional radiology but some might have needed assistance from the Concord urologist, the same one that on two occasions told Nan and me that he was not willing to do anything, not remove the old stent, not introduce dye to spot the leak, he was not willing to do anything for fear of making something worse. He was very clear that he would not be doing procedures on Nan period. Now the urologist from UC was asking that a number of things be done for and to Nan. Our experience has been that the urologist usually runs the show and the intervential radiologist carry how his directions. We wondered if something started to go wrong during a procedure being done by the intervential radiologist what urologist would be available to assist. The answer is none.

We let Dr. Shoba know we preferred to have all medical procedures done in the same place and by people with extensive experience, that is UCSF. She agreed but the UC urologist was unwilling to be the admitting doctor for Nan. Dr. Warren, the oncology surgeon and chairman of the department, has an assistant. That person worked hard today to locate another doctor who would admit Nan and as of this evening had not located another doctor to admit Nan. I have placed calls to Dr. Warren's private number, to Dr. Bertagnolli's office and to Dr. Warren's office seeking their direct intervention. Meanwhile Nan is hospitalized in Concord with antibiotics morning and night, with low grade fevers, waiting for a move to a place with experts who can help solve her leaking problems. Meanwhile she is off Gleevec and Rapamune, her only line of defense against returning tumors because the doctors do not want her immune system compromised and both Gleevec and Rapamune can do just that. See why we are a bit ansy!

For a while I get worked up over this lack of care and then I try to remember words that have been spoken to me by Sharon, Art, Pam, Bob and Carrol, Roger and Carol, allow God to work out His timing and His plan. I do know that God is on top of all of this and I'm sure things will work out eventually. Its just very hard to sit and wait when people are talking past each other and all we have in inaction as a result.

So that has been my day, drove over this morning, spent time, then after finding out there would be no move today nan and I decided I should come home and work on Tax preparing. I did and made major strides on that front, then back to see her this evening and now home to sleep. Work has fallen to the wayside this week and Steve is working night and day picking up the slack, how I appreciate that guy. I'm also glad Loree is back and she has been a wonderful helper.

So can you please keep nan in your prayers, prayers that God's will will be done, that His healing arms can hold her, that his guidance will be evident in the doctors and nurses that care for her.

Thank you in advance,


tim and nan

ps part of our problem is that Dr. Warren and Dr. Bertagnolli are both in Chicago this week for meetings so we have no high powered advocate at UC pulling for us.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Staying put in Concord

Quick update.
I'm just back from medical records where I got copies of the last two CT scans done here at the hospital to take to UCSF. When I got back Nan told me that she would not be moving tonight, looks like tomorrow morning. No beds were available this evening.

Lets keep talking with our Lord.

Tim and Nan

Tuesday progress report

Dear Friends and Family,

Its 2:30 in the afternoon here in 3123. The news is mixed right now. UCSF has agreed to accept Nan as a patient. But we are warned that it might take two days to get there. In the last hour Nan's fever has started to increase, just now it was 101.9, earlier it was 101.2 so doctors are being called. We have been told that Nan does now have infection of some kind in her blood in spite of the antibiotics being given to her morning and night. She feels pretty well but has pain enough that the dilotud every 3 or 4 hours is a welcome relief. The local infectious disease Dr. would like to proceed with having intervential radiology drain off some fluid that they think has collected inside and also proceed with dye to see if the leaking point can be located. Nan would much prefer that this be done at UCSF but our time may be running long here with something needing to be done sooner than we can get there. We have just prayed together seeking God's help for right now. The nurse is getting permission for Nan to have some tylenol (sp) to see if that will work on the fever. I wish I could push the UCSF people to accept Nan this afternoon, we need to get going as soon as possible. Now the nurse says the decision has been made, no tylenol, just wait to see what happens.

Its now an hour later, the infectious disease Dr. was here and has agreed to hold off on pulling fluid from Nan's belly with a long needle. The case manager nurse was just here and she is great. She is pushing hard to facilitate the move to UC as soon as possible, could even be this evening or tomorrow morning. She also helped with the forms we need to begin to claim disability insurance first from the state and then federal government. We should have started this years ago but were unaware of it until our home health nurse brought it up. So now we have the papers in our hands to proceed. Due to Nan's fever nurses have just come to take a blood culture sample from her picc line and another from her arm. Turns out that when we arrived here in the hospital Nan had a blood infection and now they are trying to make sure she does not have one going right now. I know its confusing. Does she have a current blood infection or not? Someone must know.

It is a bit tense here with anticipation of the move and various people coming and going helping us get ready for the move. They are all nice and helpful. Meanwhile Nan got woken up from a very sound sleep and is now watching Judge Judy. Nan had a good lunch with cream of tomato soup as the main course. Also cranberry juice.

I may blog again later if we find out more about our move etc. Our life will get more complicated when we make the move to SF. The trip from home will take about an hour and a half in good traffic so I'll have to plan more carefully. It is fairly easy to find but parking is expensive. Irene has kindly arranged so I can stay at her sisters when I need to stay over in the city. That is such a blessing and relief.

Perhaps it is time for me to do some appraisal work this afternoon, also some tax prep work, I can control my home computer from here and although the connection is very slow it can be done. I have accepted a couple appraisal assignments, one in Marin and one in Santa Cruz, both of these locations can be reached easily from SF. But when there is a procedure being planned I will be at Nan's side no matter what.

Thank you for your responses to the blog and especially thank you for your prayers. Please, please continue to pray that God will guide in this process of finding the leak, fixing the leak and helping Nan on her way to recovery.

With love,

tim and nan

Monday, October 09, 2006

Monday midday report

Dear Friends and Family,

Nan has had lunch and is at this moment getting her once a week PICC line dressing change. The oncology team is working on finding a bed at UCSF but of course Dr. Warren the surgeon we know there is at meetings in Chicago. His very capable nurse practiciner is working on locating a bed. So for now we wait here in Concord. Nan had a good night with several hours of sleep in a block. Had breakfast and the pain is controlled pretty well with dilotud every three or four hours. Nan feels well and has only a low grade temp ranging between 99 and 100+ a little. She is receiving good care here and we are in a holding pattern until the move. Sharon just called and since Nan is tied up with the special nurse I spoke to her a few minutes. How nice to hear a cheery voice filled with hope.

Today Nikki was fortunate to have the day off so she went to school with Keanna to help out. She was looking forward to it. Its fun to see Keanna in action, a very bright little person with a great personality and lots of energy and ideas. Nikki and Steve are doing such a great job raising this precious little lady. Nan and I are very proud of all three.

This waiting and wondering is very tough to cope with. Nearly every medical person we speak with has ominous comments about what needs to be done for Nan, none of their comments makes it sound simple at all. Of course the big question always hanging is, could Nan handle surgery again? Would surgery of some kind be a good idea? Those are questions we do not have answers to, just concerns. Right now Nan is receiving her pain meds and its been three hours, a few minutes ago she started to experience severe pains in her tummy area which reached around to her back near the kidney area. Now our lovely nurse is doing a type and cross since they have determined that Nan needs another transfusion, that her blood was down to 8.7. We are wondering where the hemoglobin is going? This is the third transfusion in about a week and a half.

Jason and Jo just called from Tahoe. They were about to embark on the Tahoe Queen, a stern wheeler which tours the lake and does a pass into Emerald Bay, one of the most beautiful spots in the world. Nan and I did it a summer ago and loved every minute of the trip. Jason and Jo have enjoyed their trip and liked their room with fireplace and spa. We are so glad they got a chance to get away and enjoy a few hours of total of R&R. These are hard working young people, its good to see them relax a bit with each other.

I drove home last night leaving Nan's room at about 8 pm and arriving home at 9. I quickly unloaded the few things I needed to get in and went to work, fed the fish, fed the cats, fed the dogs, clean out the cat box, LeAnn had taken great care of everything while I was away. I worked through the mail finding just two income checks and plenty of bills. Seems like someone somewhere wants something every day. I stumbled into bed at 11:45, Starr dove under the covers to help keep me warm. The animals are very hesitant, they miss Nan who talks to them, loves them and is their comfort person. I got up early and waded through conditions, value checks, set up orders, wrote payroll checks, got my desk basically clean again then headed this way at 11:30 or so. Much later than I had promised Nan but she understood. I may have to run to Lodi this afternoon to catch an appraisal that slipped through the cracks on us.

My constant prayer is that God will continue to protect Nan from all the physical enemies she faces right now. God has invested so much in her recovery and we are begging Him to continue His work. How we long to have some physical victories and to get back on track with recovery. Nan is so brave and committed to recovery, she never wavers and inspires everyone who meets her, nurse, friend, family member, we are all inspired by her calm faith and quiet convictions.

As always we seek your prayers in Nan's behalf.

with love

tim and nan

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Keanna and Nikki to the rescue.

Dear Friends and Family,

Sunday evening 10:50. Nan called at 10 and was falling asleep. She has had a very good day. Her day started after a sleep over with Pam Whitted. She had breakfast, rested some and then she and Pam played games, Pam learns fast! Good thing there wasn't any money on the table! Pam took me to breakfast and Nan rested for awhile. Then we went back to the room and shortly there after Nikki and Keanna came to visit. Keanna set to work creating a picture for Grammie complete with stickers and markings and Nan and Nikki caught on on the events at the sale yesterday. Pam headed home and called from Stockton to tell us she had made it and to also tell us that she had purchased a electric cat box, since Dana got us into this cat business we are coping with the unfriendly side of having cats, the BOX! Yuk. Well Pam has been threatening to get the electric cat box that does a much better job of keeping odors under control. So now I just have to catch up with a very busy Pam, raid her trunk and both kitties and me will be much happier. Thanks for everything Pam, meals, company, endless rubbing of legs, back, arms, Pam you are a wonder worker indeed. Nan loved every minute of your visit.

Nikki and Keanna entertained us for awhile and then Keanna and I headed for the little secret garden area while Nikki and Nan read the mags Pam had purchased. Keanna and I enjoyed the garden, I sat and she played. Then we headed for some lunch at Spaghetti Factory. When we got back they decided it was time to go and left. Mom and I rested for awhile and I tried to decide what was the latest I could leave and still get some work done at home. How I hate to walk out the door when Nan is in the hospital. Suddenly we heard a noise and there were Keanna and Nikki back to surprise us, they certainly did and with gifts. Nikki had found some lovely gowns at the mall and Nan was delighted with them, beautiful fabrics and colors. When they had arrived Nan had just decided it was time to walk and was getting ready to do so. So we all walked down the hall, the next hall and to the second set of elevators and back. We were quite an impressive sight, Nan leading the way setting a torrid pace and we tried to keep up. When she got back it was time for dinner so she ate and then got her TPN, antibiotics, pain meds and settled in for the night. I left at 8 arriving home at 9, quickly moved a few things out of the motorhome and started opening the mail, getting the office organized so I could get done what needs to be done.

It is my intention to be with Nan most of the day tomorrow. Dr. Patel thinks she may be able to make the move to UCSF tomorrow. She will travel by ambulance but I will need to drive there too to assist with getting her settled in her new room, meet doctors, nurses etc. Of course we are anxious regarding moving to a new hospital, a place we have not been before but we've been to a few, Boston, Houston, Sacramento, Watsonville, Antioch, Tracy, San Ramon, Concord, Duarte so as Shannon Whitted would say, its an adventure!

Irene called today to see if we would take a picture when nan read the new book that Irene had provided to Keanna. I've included that photo here. It was a very special moment and Keanna loves to have books read to her. Amy, the ICU nurse from Boston emailed Dr. Bertagnolli's office number and email address so we can pass that along to doctors who might need to talk with her about Nan's unique plumbing. Thank you Amy and I'm sure you did a good job today at saving lives! Its what you do best.

My trip home was uneventful. The dash radio in the motorhome has decided that the volume control is tired and won't let you adjust it so very quiet trip home but no problems, about 33 miles to our driveway.

Tomorrow could hold many answers to the questions that confront us regarding Nan's leak. It may take more than one day to even get a bed assignment so we will try to be patient. Our care at John Muir has been excellent, the nurses are very thoughtful and work well with Nan. Of course Nan is a professional patient and knows how to behave and cooperate too. She is feeling very good most of the time with minimal pains which are controlled well with 1 mg of dilotud every 2 to 6 hours. She is eating every meal now, soup, milk, tea and loving it.

Well this ol boy needs to sleep, just had to thank the many people who made this day work so well for Nan. I sure hope we are up to the challenge of passing along this quality of love to others when its our time to help.

Please pray for God's guidance and control over the hospital change, doctor changes, transportation process and help with the internal leaking. Thank you in advance for your including Nan in your time with God.

We send our love to each of you,

tim and nan

Sunday morning in Nan's room

Dear Friends and Family,

Its about 8:45 here in sunny Concord, Nan's breakfast tray was just brought in and Cream of Wheat is the main feature. Nan is eating and appears to be enjoying doing so. She has her little carton of milk working and is wondering why they insist on coffee when she has repeatedly ask for tea, oh well. Pam Whitted is waking in her little cot bed, she came last evening, took me to dinner and spent the night with Nan. Over the years she has done this many times and what an act of kindness it is. Nan had a so so night with a tiny episode of vomiting and was sort of restless. I did my normal panic attack thing at 4 am, I wake and every bad thing and every undone thing comes at me like I was standing on a freeway. Nan's current unresolved leaking situation has me pretty upset. I feel like we are dealing with a potential time bomb. So far the situation has remained stable with a constant flow of urine out the incision wound, minimal fevers, excellent output from the nephrostomy tubes, good food intake, weight up to 114 again today. So we wait and wait.

Yesterday afternoon we were a bit lonely, sort of hoped to see someone and then someone very special arrived, Dolly drove down from Calestoga and spent several hours with us. Our time together was wonderful in every way. We were able to catch up with Dollys life and she shared many inspiring thoughts with us. She brought a little book with thoughts for each day that Nan can keep with her to read. When she left she prayed with us reminding us that God cares and is in control. Finally she had to head back to her home and we reluctantly let her go. But shortly later Pam called and was near. So a slow day turned out fine. I took a very special phone call from Emily. She and Loren had just spent a week in Victoria which is a lovely place to visit. She said that from the blog she could tell we were a bit lonely, we got to talk for a few minutes and then a call came in from Nikki. She had a wonderful day at the twins sale and sold many many items. Hearing from friends and family is always great.

I was so glad to be able to spend a day with Nan without worrying about running off to an appointment. We talked about everything we needed to talk about. Some of you know Nan really well, others less well. Nan is a strong person who thinks before she speaks and does not express her emotions all the time. She is careful and thoughtful, compassionate and very steady in her resolve. She approaches life in a very practical manner, always has and takes each day with faith and courage. I admire her, I admire her courage, I treasure time spent with her, love her smile, her soft skin, her beautiful blues, her blond tresses. Having lived with this beautiful woman for 36 years has been a wonderful experience. After a childhood of domestic stress and strain at times living with Nan has been a totally different experience. She has been an adult, no silly games, no pouting or tantrums, just solid honest steady day by day devotion and love. If Nan said it you could go to the bank on it. It is a refreshing experience to live with someone so honest and trustworthy, so true and loyal, so stunning and yet so faithful at the same time. Our family has been blessed daily with this wonderful woman. My only regrets come when I realize that I have not always appreciated her enough and have made her life difficult at times.

Boston sort of spoiled us, we were able to be together all day and all night if needed. Now we struggle with splitting our time between medical and business and its a very hard balance to achieve. Especially with owning a business where there is almost never a time when one could do a little more to make it work better. I'm grateful that Jean has been such a good help this past week and also grateful that Loree will be back to help this week. We have precious clients and we want to take care of their needs too.

Right now Nan is teaching Pam how to play Gin Rummy, Sharon you may get a call for rules!! Nan's voice is strong, her mind clear and sharp, no more Antivan inspired mental vacations. She rests when she can but right now competition is in the air. I'm about to start working on an appraisal since Nan is sort of occupied at the moment. She has had her blood thinner shot, zophram, breakfast, TPN is running, antiobiotic is going in.

I know I always end the emails with a request for prayer. Actually I feel like I should begin the bog with a request, put one in the middle and then the end also. I so want God to heal Nan. I have always heard that one is not tested beyond what one can handle. Our experience since early spring certainly means we should be about to the limit. My hearts desire is that God will either directly heal Nan or arrange events so she can receive the care she needs from someone who knows what they are doing. We long for the day when Nan can move about freely, have enough strength to be able to fly places she wants to go, to be able to visit other GISTers again bringing cheer like Irene does us, regain her health, play with Keanna and watch her dance classes, school programs. Neither of us has given up on the dream of recovery. So this day is another day in the process of getting better. And today we get to see Nikki and Keanna, yea!!

Once again we have been blessed by our friends and good care here at the hospital. Nan can be reached at 925 682 8200 room 3123.

Please keep Nan in your prayers today. Actually please and thank you.


tim and nan and pam

ps Pam is catching on very fast at this game! They have only had to call Sharon once for the rules!