Monday, October 24, 2005

Mmmm, Meatloaf

Ever chewed your food? I mean, really chewed your food. Next time you sit down to eat, try chewing each bite for at least two minutes. If you're like us, you'll notice two things. First, two minutes is a really long time. And, second, when you chew your food that long, your teeth do a better job of breaking it down into mush than you could have ever imagined. This little discovery is brought to you by Dalton. After picking up some KFC for the older child on Friday night, he decided to try his hand at swallowing actual protein. Knowing that I would have been a nervous wreck if he did it in front of me, he snuck in four pieces of popcorn chicken while driving home. This was a risky move, as any slight miscalculation could have led to an episode of choking while driving and he would have had to perform the heimlich on himself on the door of his car. Although he now admits that there were a few harrowing moments as the chicken made it's way through the tumor web previously known as Dalton's esophagus, it turned out to be a heck of a gamble. This weekend, Dalton ate actual food...cornbread with buckets of butter, the inside of a Taco Bell combo burrito (arguably NOT real food), and, mmmm, meatlof. I can't begin to tell you what it does for a 37-year old mans spirits to be able to eat meat instead of another Banana Ensure Plus.

The first round of conversations between Dalton and I related to his cancer diagnosis were pretty much what you would expect:

D - "Am I going to die?"
T - "You'd better not."
D - "I'm not going to die."
T - "You'd better not."

D - "Surgery sounds wierd. I don't want them to open me up that wide. I mean, my esophagus is UNDER my heart."
T - "Unfortunately, you don't have a lot of options in this one. You can't move your esophagus now."

D and T - "What do we do about our jobs?"
D and T - "Will we have enough money to get by?"
D and T - "Wonder what chemo's like?"

But then, there is this second round of conversations. Things like, "Will we ever be able to have more kids?" I mean, does chemo and radiation permanently damage a man's ability to make healthy swimmers? Do we need to put some on ice for future possibilities? Also, do we need to use super, mega birth control while he is on chemo/radiation because any child conceived during that time would obviously have three heads?

Then, there is the whole realization that Dalton will be at home full time for probably the next six months. How wierd is that? And, how about the fact that when you lose your hair from chemo, you lose all your hair not just the hair on top of your head. You lose your eyelashes, eyebrows, and body hair, too. We were laying in bed last night and Dalton mentioned that he was thinking about growing a beard while he undergoes treatment, and at about the same time we realized that there probably wouldn't be anything to grow. For the first time since he was 16, he won't need to shave.

We still don't know what God has in store for us in this process or what exactly we are supposed to learn, but we have decided that this is the last in a long line of events that convince us our lives will never be "normal." Anymore, I'm not even sure that I know what normal is anymore.

Here's to meatloaf.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I praise you Lord for Dalton, Tricia, Little Dalton and Iain. Praise you Lord for you have created Dalton. You knitted his inmost being in his mother's womb. Dalton is fearfully and wonderfully made. His frame is not hidden from You, Your eyes see Dalton's body. All the days ordained for Dalton were written in Your book before one of them came to be. You will protect those days and not one will be stolen from Dalton. How precious are Your thoughts of Dalton, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were Dalton to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When Dalton awakes, You Lord are with him. ( Psalm 139:13-18 )Lord, Show Dalton your healing, show Tricia your strength and confidence, show Little Dalton and Iaian your comfort and your soveirnty. Show the family your incredible love for them. Add my love to yours and overwhelm them by your goodness. I pray these things in the name of Jesus.

10:27 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

You are truly your mother's child. Your honesty, your directness are that of your mother. Since you were a little girl, you were always admired for your ability to express yourself and once again you have done so, very brillantly. I don't know what the outcome of this adventure will be, but I do know you have the ability to handle whatever the future holds. You are as amazing as your Mom, and I think of both of you on a daily basis. Be sure to take care of yourself first and foremost and if for any reason you need some motherly comforting, my arms are available. Love, hugs and kisses Laurie

3:02 PM  
Blogger Mikeandsusannesworld said...

We continue to pray for you NZ. God is not safe - but He is good. He is not defineable, but you can find Him. His ways are a mystery, choose to follow. Faith and trust are parallel words: easy to do in daylight, scary to do in the dark. We can't empathise, but we do pray, expect and then we pray some more.

Blessing, favour and peace for you all.
Mike and Susanne

6:46 PM  

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