(These next few posts may seem familiar. We wanted to repost some of our Caring Bridge journal entries in order to allow new followers to hear our story from the beginning. We also have added in some pictures and reflections. Added reflections will be bolded and italicized. This is the first of a three part series.)
Journal Entry 1 — How it all started
Hello family and friends-
We decided to start this Caring Bridge site to share some news we found out about Brad. Friday September 6, we went into the ER due to a bad headache and vomiting. (We thought this was due to a concussion from wake boarding a few weeks ago). Brad had a CT scan done and it showed no trama that would be related to a concussion, but an abnormality. He then had an MRI done, and it showed a 4cm mass located towards the back left side of his brain. They do believe it to be cancerous, but a “better” more treatable type.
On the optimistic side, it is located in a “more ideal” area, close to the surface, so they think surgery will be a very successful treatment. The prayer and hope is surgery is all that will be needed.
We met with the neurosurgeon from Loyola last Wednesday. Brad’s surgery is scheduled for September 24 at 11:00 am. They expect the entire process to take around 4-6 hours, and he’ll probably be in the hospital 4-5 days.
Of course this news has been a lot to take in, and this past week has felt somewhat of a blur. But overall, we are hanging in there, enjoying some quality family time together, and are feeling very optimistic at a successful surgery.
We already feel so blessed by our community. Words cannot express how loved we have felt. The cards, meals, child care offers, prayers, “secret angels”, and gifts that we’ve already been blessed with has been so humbling, and a good reminder that God will always provide. He has provided before we have even had to ask, and for that we are grateful.
We have also already had answered prayers. Brad has been getting headaches on and off, and because it is close to surgery, and medication can thin his blood, there’s not much he can take to ease the pain. However the last few days have been much better, and we give glory to God for that.
We’ve had people ask for specific things to be in prayer about. Some specific things that you can be in prayer over:
–that Brad’s headaches stay to a minimum (prayer answered!)
–for the hands and mind of the neurosurgeon and his team the day of surgery (prayer answered!)
–that surgery is successful and recovery is smooth (prayer answered!)
–for calmness and peace for our family, especially Grace and Sadie (prayer answered!)
–that we all stay healthy leading up to surgery and after (prayer answered!)
–that our faith says strong, and doesn’t waiver (prayer answered!)
–and that through our story we can be a light to this sometimes dark world (prayer being answered!)
We have already seen God’s hand in so many ways through this, including that wake board fall that brought us into the emergency room. Things could have looked quite different if this was let go for a longer period of time. We covet your prayers through this time, and will do our best to update as best as we can.
Brad, Lindsey, and the girls
Journal Entry 2 — Surgery
Brad just moved from Pre-op to surgery. It will probably be about 4 hours, and I’m assuming longer for me before I get an update. (It was much much longer! Lindsey was able to see me in recovery right after surgery though.)
Please say a special prayer for protection for his vision. Looking at his most recent MRI they feel pretty certain he may have vision issues after surgery.
Thanks for all the messages this morning, please keep the prayers coming.
September 24, 2019 (Later that day)
I’m sorry for delay in updating. Brad is out of surgery and getting settled now in ICU….the doctor said surgery went as he planned, and from what Brad can tell, he thinks his vision is okay (praise God for that!) We can update in the next few days in regards to diagnosis.
We felt very lifted up in prayers today.
Journal Entry 3 — Post Op (WARNING graphic image included)
Update on Brad today:
He does now have some peripheral vision loss on his lower right side. There is potential that it can improve, but probably not much. His central vision is great, and his left eye is good. (One of the many miracles we’ve experienced — you’ll find out more next post!)
We met Brad’s Neurosurgeon today. He was happy with how surgery went, and felt they accomplished what they intended to in terms of removal.
He sent out a biopsy of what he thought looked most aggressive for preliminary testing. From what he could see, he felt most of it is low grade with a few spots that may have progressed. The preliminary diagnosis showed it to be more aggressive than initially expected. We will get the actual diagnosis in a few days.
We are hopeful and praying that the next pathology results are better than we are expecting now. Obviously this was hard news to hear, as we weren’t really expecting it. (Looking back, this was probably one of the most difficult parts…the waiting…)
Brad’s pain level is varying but at times is pretty uncomfortable. Prayers for pain relief are also appreciated. (Answered prayer! I was able to stop all pain medication quicker than anticipated.)
We are definitely tired, and hoping to get some sleep tonight. (Sleep last night wasn’t too successful being in the ICU)
We thank you for the constant prayers. We know our God is good, even when it doesn’t make sense. Keep the prayers coming.
I’ll keep updating when I can.
Looking back, the time leading up to my surgery seems like a blur. I don’t remember much, but I do remember being super relaxed, and not worried about the surgery or what was in store for me. Maybe I just didn’t fully understand the gravity of the situation, maybe I was just in so much pain and wanted the surgery so I could get back to my life…All I know is I had this overwhelming sense of peace which would later be replaced with even more pain, doubt and fear. Thankfully, God was not done and this story is not over.