Thursday, May 28, 2020

First Things First

Thank you for your prayers, sweet friends!

So...where do I even begin?
Most of you know that for the past couple of years I have been having health issues
with more unanswered questions as time moved forward.
Even though there was no clear path as to where all of this was heading,
we felt secure in our decision to move towards our dream of retiring in rural Tennessee
and building our farmhouse.

We made another trip back to Duke in NC for scheduled appointments on April 24th
and after reading the results of my CT scan, I was admitted into the hospital.
With all of the COVID precautions in place, no visitors of any kind were allowed
 so  Jim dropped me off at the door.
I was tested for the dreaded virus and was declared negative.
I underwent four different procedures in my first four days there and of course,
another biopsy was one of them.
After waiting about 5 days (it was over a weekend) the results came back showing
a malignancy in the bile duct and liver.
I knew there was something really wrong but hearing the actual word left me numb.
It was a day or so later and a little reluctantly, I reached out to Diana for a prayer request.
I was discharged the Friday before Mother's Day and was able to spend it with Aaron
and his was a good weekend.


What happened next is something I'm still trying wrap my brain around.
On that Monday morning as we were returning back to TN, 
I noticed the vision in my left eye was cloudy with lots of floaters with what looked like pepper
 and throughout the day, it was only getting worse.
I was completely without any vision in my left eye whatsoever when we arrived at home.
We went directly to the ER at Vanderbilt where they found after blood tests
that I had a severe bacterial infection in my bloodstream and it had gone into my left eye.

Are you kidding me, Lord?

I was admitted to without hesitation and they began treatment for the infection
and immediately given injections of antibiotics in my eye...
...and yet again, tested for COVID....which came back negative, as expected.
The doctor put it to me straight...he was not sure I would recover any vision in my left eye.

A couple of days later I was scheduled to go into surgery in hopes to wash the eye out 
the best they could and inject more antibiotics.
Before any surgical procedure, the dreaded COVID test is a must (#3 for me!) 
and two hours before I was to go to surgery, I got a call telling me my test was POSITIVE!

Where are you, Jesus?

I was in total disbelief and quickly moved to the COVID floor even though I had no symptoms.
I truly wanted to crawl into a hole and never come out.
But glory be to God, they did the surgery and the next morning after the eye patch removed,
my vision had greatly improved...I could see blurry images and even read a few letters on a card!
My doctor was astounded...and I was praising the Lord!

There you are, Lord!

After a week at Vanderbilt with not one COVID symptom in sight, they let me go home... RV quarantine for 10 days, still completely asymptomatic.

So this is where I stand at the moment...
I am on IV antibiotics at home for two more weeks for the infection
and no treatments for the cancer can be started until this nasty bacterial infection is gone.

First things first.

I met with my oncologist via Zoom and was really impressed with her.
We discussed some new treatments that were out there and she was very encouraging.
So needless to say, my life this past month has been absolutely surreal.
I have experienced every emotion possible.
Meltdowns? I've had a few and I'm sure there are more on the horizon...
...but I'm doing my best to stay positive.
Mostly, I'm having a hard time trying to make any kind of sense out of this...
...but what I do know is that my God is in control and He has me in the palm of His hand.
Again, I want to tell those who have been praying for me how much I appreciate them.
I have a new road on my journey and prayer is what will get me through this.

So that's what I've been up to... about you??

Much love to all, 


  1. Oh my. I've been praying since reading Diane's post, and I see you occasionally on FB, but I'm glad to read this "summing up" of what's been a roller-coaster time for you. God's definitely got this, and He's got YOU in the palm of His hand. May you sense His love and care for you throughout this time.

  2. Oh my goodness, I am shocked to read all that has happened to you over this last little while, Debby. I can only imagine the gammut of emotions that you, and your family are feeling. Sending you an armful of hugs wrapped up in much love. Praying that you are feeling ever so closely, the loving arms of Jesus around you, as you and He walk down this difficult path together. May He give you strength, calm and assurance that He goes before you as you face each day together. Take care, lovely Debby♥

  3. Prayers, prayers, prayers from here. My heart breaks that your husband couldn't be with you. Rest in the shelter of of the Lord's wings. There can not be a 'no visitation' rule for Him.

  4. Oh Debby, I had no idea you had been through SO much, even though I knew it was bad enough already. But thank You, Jesus, for being there with you and giving you peace and comfort in the midst of the storm. And He will not leave you nor forsake you at any point in this journey. I know you know this. Praying for complete healing and that your strength will return and that you will be able to once again enjoy the dream of living there in your new home. Praying for you daily. Thank you for this update. It helps us to know just how to pray. God bless you dear friend.

  5. Bless your dear heart, Debby. This is the first I am reading of this, and I have been wondering how you are. I have no words to express how my heart goes out to you. I have been praying for you and will continue to do so. God's got this. His hand has been on you all throughout, and His hand will remain upon you through all that is ahead. He will bring you THROUGH this, in Jesus' name. Sending hugs and much love to you today, sweet friend.

  6. I have been praying for you, Debby ... last I knew you were headed to Duke for appointments and would have to be tested for COVID. With all of the time that had elapsed I feared things had taken a scary turn, so prayed with that in mind. What a surreal month you have had, indeed!

    Will continue to pray for healing and for the bacterial infection to go away. So thankful we can know for sure that God is in control and that He is good all the time. I'm glad to have this update to know how to pray more specifically. Is your vision continuing to improve?

  7. Oh, Debby! I'm so sorry you are facing so many health challenges. May the good Lord continue to guide you and give you strength during this difficult time. Thoughts and prayers are with you, girlfriend. Sending hugs!

  8. Dear Debby, so wonderful to hear from you via this updated post on what you have been going through. Will continue to pray for you! You are a very brave women and God is with you in all these very scary trials. You are very special to many of us and you just stay focused and just enjoy the moments and think not anything that will bring fear...
    love ya, and sending a big hug, Roxy xoxo

  9. Oh Debby so very sorry to hear of your health problems. I have been praying for you and will continue to do so.
    You have a wonderful attitude and a trust in God.
    God bless you and make you well.

  10. Dear friend, I have been surely bathing you in prayer and well, you know....My sweet bracelet is still holding up too!!!! Love you! Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  11. Ooh Debby, you have been through so much. I was gasping as I read through your post. Thank the Lord that you managed to get through the eye ordeal, and are on antibiotics. I can certainly understand all the spectrum of emotions you are feeling. You are loved and prayed for by us, and we will continue to do so. God bless you, Debby, and hugs are sent from me to you.

  12. Sweet Debby, you are going through such hard, hard things!! I just felt inspired to share a poem with you . . . one that has helped me in difficult times. Praying for you, that you will see "The Rock" in your storm. Much love . . .


    I'm standing, Lord.
    There is a mist that blinds my sight.
    Sharp jagged rocks, front, left, and right.
    Hover, dim, gigantic in the night.
    Where is the way?

    I'm standing, Lord.
    The black rock hems me in behind
    Above my head a moaning wind
    Chills and oppresses heart and mind.
    I am afraid!

    I'm standing, Lord.
    The rock is hard beneath my feet.
    I nearly slipped Lord on the sleet.
    So weary, Lord and where a seat?
    Still must I stand?

    He answered me, and on His face
    A look ineffable of grace,
    Of perfect, understanding love,
    Which all my murmuring did remove.

    I'm standing, Lord.
    Since Thou hast spoken, Lord I see
    Thou hast beset; these rocks are Thee;
    And since Thy love encloses me,
    I stand and sing.

  13. 🕊I wouldn't wish this on anyone, but I sure can see the hand of God in it all. You wrote this so beautifully, Debby. It is wonderful that you asked the questions and included them here with all the beautiful Scriptures.

    So good to find you here. I am shocked that I missed this post until now...usually, I'm like a hawk. So glad that your oncologist is encouraging. Mine is something less than that. 😏

  14. Dear have had quite the month. I thank the Lord that he has brought you through it this far! How hard it must be for you. I'm thankful that you are home and that you can still see. Praying for you as you wait to move forward with what will be coming next.
    Through all of life's challenges may it bring us back to the Lord and His word. Reading through the Psalm 119 and all the encouragement to seek after the word of God.

    My family has been packing as we have to move again. We have had to move so much that I really struggle with change. Sometimes it's like an adventure and sometimes I get really emotional. The Lord has provided us a place to move to that isn't too far away. Our landlord is selling the place we are living in currently and we are also getting the place ready for showings during the next three weeks. The Lord is good....the kids are finished their lessons for the year, the leaves are opening on the trees and the first hoards of mosquitos have died down after some frost. :) It's safe to go outside now.
    Praying you have a beautiful day....resting!

  15. Oh my. I have been praying but now can be more specific (even though our God knows all). Please know you are held up by our prayers and His love!! Do please keep us posted!! Peace be with you, my friend.

  16. I am speechless. Only to say that god is in control. Does that make it any easier? I am sure it doesn't, but in the end He will have the victory. Keeping you in my prayers.

  17. Oh dear Debby, I'm so sorry for all that you've been going through. Praying for you dear one, that God would hold you and keep you in His perfect peace as you endure under all this. Praying for healing, strength and good treatment for you!

  18. Debby, I am so sorry. Bless your heart, that is a lot to deal with! I mean, one thing right after the other! You have been in my thoughts and prayers since seeing Diana's post. Sending you best wishes and a big hug.

  19. Oh my goodness Debby, you have been through so much.
    You have been in my prayers since reading Diana's post and I will keep you in my prayers.

    My thoughts and good wishes.

    All the best Jan

  20. I am so sorry to learn about everything you have been going through! I had no idea, but I knew you had been on my mind a lot! God knew! I can’t begin to understand His ways, but I know he is in charge. I know you are a strong woman of faith, and I trust He will give you strength, patience, and healing in all areas! Love you!

  21. Oh Debby you have been through so much. I am praying for you. Your faith through all this is a testimony and an encouragement to all of us. love, Deborah

  22. Just now seeing your sorry you've had such an ordeal! But you are right: God does indeed hold in the palm of his hand, and whatever may come, you'll still be there. Thinking of you, with many prayers.

  23. Oh, my goodness Debby, you are so inspiring! I know few people who have been near as much but we all know that the Lord is holding you and giving you strength that surpasses all strength. I pray for your peace and comfort during this journey and prayers of complete healing for you. Love you sweet lady!

  24. Dear sweet Debbie... I am astounded at what you have had to go through between the covid, and the bacterial infection, along with the cancer diagnosis. It has had to be a tremendous time of difficulty and aloneness for you in the hospital, not having any company. My heart hurts for you deeply, and yet, I'm encouraged, because the Lord has blessed you with your eyesight still, and an encouraging oncologist. I look forward to more victory reports, and overcoming of the obstacles presented to your pathway, as the Lord is with you. You are always in my prayers, I think of you often, and when I do, I pray. Our Great Physician has you in the Palm of His hand! With much love and prayer!

  25. OPMGOSH! What's that old saying? If you didn't have bad luck you wouldn't have any luck at all!? What in the world?!?! No one could ever predict that road you would go down with this starting with the pain and testing yuo went through-continuing to a cancer diagnosis- Covid- and loss of vision. You have been a magnet for anything that could go wrong. However, I do believe the worst is done and there will be an uptick now. It surely can't get worse and we are going to pray you well. God bless you- I am so sorry you have to go through any of this mess. Love to you- Let me know when/if you want another prayer request!!! xo Diana

  26. Peeking in, Debby. Hope that you're seeing ground breaking. Once building begins, things go fast.

    Keeping you tucked in my prayers.

  27. Dear Debby, I am distressed that you have been through so much and still going through unchartered waters. You took time to stop by my blog to encourage me, and you also need encouragement. This I know, the Lord is with you and keeping watch over you. I will put you on my prayer list and may His love comfort you and give you peace while you go through these new trials. Love and Hugs...Sandi

  28. Wel Debby, I hardly know where to start. I finally got back into an occasional blog post and have been noticing that you weren't among the Hodgepodgers. So I finally decided to check up. Dear Debby! What you have been through! But God is real and God is close, and we never have to suffer on our own. I will pray for you and that you will sense Christ's presence and peace on this journey. God bless you!

  29. Dear Debby, I'm sorry I missed this post and the opportunity to be praying for you and your family over these last difficult months. Praying that God will heal, hold and comfort you.

  30. Just popping by as I read an update on Marilyn's post about your health and want you to know that you remain in my daily prayers. Stay strong sweet friend.


Thank you for stopping by today! Your sweet comments are such an encouragement to me.

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