Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Cooking lessons....

Karena went back to the hospice yesterday (28th)...so she did really well to be out for 4 whole days. She really enjoyed being at home for Christmas and is hoping to spend some more time here over the next couple of weeks....in fact we are hoping that the hospice will keep a room reserved for her and that she'll be able to be generally based at home until she's at a stage where she can no longer be cared for here...we will find out whether that will be possible on Thursday. I am picking her up tomorrow (30th) for the day - she's planning on giving me a crash cooking course (am I looking forward to that ??!!) and I will take her back in the evening. We're still hoping for a miraculous healing but at the same time we are also preparing as best-we-can for Karena's welcome into glory. She's a wonderful woman - a magnificent wife and mum....and is peaceful in the midst of all the turmoil and pain. The range of emotions is enormous though (speaking for myself) but in the darkest moments, I do have a sense of being 'carried'. Jesus is close-by, of that I am sure....

Stuff to pray for :-
  • Karena to be able to spend quality time at home with us just being family....and precious memories to be made!
  • Peace in our hearts irrespective of how this all turns out.
  • My cooking !!!!!
If I don't blog again before 2010......a Happy New Year to you from us all !

Ps 139:16 "....All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be....."

Thursday, 24 December 2009

1 more sleep until Christmas....

Well she has made it back for Christmas! Hooray....I brought her home from the hospital this morning accompanied by a wheelchair and more pills than you can shake a stick at ! I have become Doctor Craig for the next couple of days administering the plethora of tablets and patches etc (Karena get's to do her own injections tho - she doesn't seem to want my expertise in that area !).
So with just a couple of hours notice our best friends in the world came over and we had some fun, some food, some silly dancing (Karena didn't do that bit!) and some laughter.
She's really glad to be home but is massively uncomfortable inside her tummy. The hospital are keeping her room for the next few days so that we can pop back whenever we need to. Not sure how many days Karena will be at home - not too many I suspect, but for tonight at least she is asleep in her own bed....She's done too much this afternoon and is totally whooped.
So Christmas day will be here in an hour or so, and we are planning to do presents, turkey and all the rest here at our house along with Karena's parents, her sister and 2 nephews. Should be fun !
Appreciating your ongoing prayers for the babe, and of course......a Very Merry Christmas to you!

Monday, 21 December 2009

A week of change....

John 14: 1-3 (Jesus said) "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house there are many rooms; if it were not so I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am...."

Karena had her scan on Monday; then for the next few days we discovered the extent of the medical problem - the cancer is back, now in the bowel, and growing rapidly and they cannot operate. Chemo would be permissible if she regained her strength but would be unlikely to have much effect. We are told she may live 3 months, but I will be surprised if that is the case, things seem to be changing very quickly. I have resigned from my job and will look after our children 24/7 for the foreseeable future.

Karena, my wife for 16 years, is on her final journey. Fairly soon she will be with the Lord forever, in his presence where there is no mourning, no crying, no pain....

The day before yesterday we got the christmas tree up and decorations out....without Karena's artistic flair though so it's not quite as good as normal, but the girls did a pretty good job (B+me just bung everything up !). I was glad to get that done to try to make Christmas a special time for the children still, albeit with unwelcome news hanging over our heads.
Karena has been transferred to the Dutchess of Kent House which is a palleative care unit. She has a fabulous room which includes a spare bed for a visitor to sleep in, sofa and comfy chairs, big TV, dvd player etc. We did a family film with chinese takeaway the night before last.
Their goal is to try to make her as comfortable as possible and hopefully for her to be able to come home for Christmas (either Christmas day or even better...Christmas eve) but that is by no means certain.
Yesterday was heart wrenching as we told the children the news....we cried, we hugged, we prayed, we cried some more....then I brought the children home and we did dvd and a pizza, and all went up to bed together. Karena's sister stayed over at DKH with her last night.
Appreciating your prayers :-
  • that Karena will be able to come home for a last family Christmas with us all together
  • for strength of faith and hope for Karena in these final days/weeks
  • for our children to be able to laugh and to be able to cry and to be confident that, in spite of the circumstances, God IS in control.
Thanks for your prayers x

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Family weekend.....

Quick update....Karena is out of hospital...just for the weekend. That's something at least !
CT scan is now postponed until Monday - it's been planned then cancelled about 10 times this week so you're never quite sure whether it's going to happen or not! The bowel surgeon came to see her on Friday afternoon and have a prod around. Still don't really know whether they will operate or not, but she is still very swollen and uncomfortable around her tummy so they need to do something !
As I write she is in the kitchen making Christmas decorations with B+O, with food bubbling away on the cooker....
Today has been a mix of family time, tiredness and some tears too.
We're looking forward to doing "Family X Factor" tonight !...then back into hospital at 7pm tomorrow evening.
Prayer points as previously ......

Thursday, 10 December 2009

One week on...

Karena has been in now for almost a week and in honesty she is not really any better than when she went in last Saturday. Medically things really aren't looking very good. Her bowel continues to be significantly swollen...they have X rayed her twice since last Sat, and are now planning (re-planning!) to give her a CT scan tomorrow (Fri) to see what is going on...their expectation as far as I understand it is that the cancer is now irritating the bowel hence preventing it from normal functioning.
There is a fairly strong possibility (from what we've been told today) that they will want to do a bowel operation. This is not good (if it happens) because she will then need to recover from major surgery before she can get back onto the chemo.
We REALLY need a breakthrough now....the next few days could be fairly definitive.....
Please pray for her...
  • for strength of heart (this is so hard for a great mum who wants to be home with her children preparing for Christmas).
  • for strength in body - she is definitely weaker, very tired and still in pain
  • for strength of faith (for confidence that God is still with her in her tougest hours)
If you are thinking about visiting, please can you contact me first to check....

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Back in !

Karena went back into hospital early on Saturday morning. She was in the same place pain-wise as the previous week and was in a lot of pain in her abdomin, and it was very swollen. Poor girl, this is so tough for her ;-( So Saturday was another tearful day all round.
She had a fantastic African Christian nurse tho who was firey and praying and stirring us both in the midst of the tears and pain. We needed her...a divine appointment I think !!
Anyway, Karena had X rays in her abdomin and chest - which were both clear. She will now have a CT scan tomorrow (Monday) and then they decide what to do (if anything). Went to see her this afternoon and she was still in pain in her back but her stomach swelling had definitely reduced a bit. She's been walking around her hospital room praying like the billio after our African sister stirred her up !! She has now been moved to the cancer ward and another dear gentle Kenyan lady called Esther has been helping her.
I wish she was home tho; it just doesn't feel right without her here.....and my cooking is pretty rubbish !
Appreciating your prayers again for the babe. Her deepest desire right now is that she'd be able to be home for a pain-free family Christmas. Please.....