This should be a brief update on a couple issues of praise and prayer. First of all, I don’t have Dr. Bartlett’s reading on my first postoperative CT scan yet (I am supposed to have one each 3 months for a year or so, so this is # 1) but the reading thus far is negative for any residual disease. Admittedly, it took a year for some to show up last year, though we did have chemotherapy for the 7 months after surgery, but this is still a cause for thankfulness and praise to God for his help this far. Dr. Bartlett, being the surgeon who did/supervised the work, would be the most critical examiner of the CT scan, and so await his opinion, but thankful for the good report thus far. By the grace of God, I have pretty much regained the majority of the weight that I should gain, I may put on a few more pounds just for good measure, as an insurance policy, should I need/be able to tolerate a third marathon procedure, but will basically stabilize my weight and keep my strength up.
The prayer items include prayer for my brother in law, Harold Punter, who is still undergoing rather difficult chemotherapy and struggling to keep up some strength and ability to work, at least to a limited degree, and keep his life going. We have always been close in so many ways, sharing our cancer trials has brought us even closer, but it is difficult to watch my brother in law and friend struggle with what the Lord has allowed in his life. My sister Margie and Harold have been an encouragement to me to keep my head up and going in our battles against our cancers and appreciate your prayers for them also.
The other major item of prayer is for our struggles to figure out a reasonable solution to our leaking septic system at the hospital. For some reason, whether the shakes caused by the quakes, the buildup of pressure from the solids in the huge tank (knowing what interesting items have been flushed down the toilets in the hospital, including mango pits and other things even the most durable of systems are not made to take), we have developed a leak in the system. Poor Duane Ver Kaik is commissioned with the nonenviable task of trying to make this work. One of my concerns is that, IF we even can get a “honey wagon” truck or two to help empty it, we figure it will be at least 10 loads and, with all the fears of diseases, where will it be dumped. Those who have had the privilege of going to Haiti know that convenience often rules over logic and trash is deposited all over the scenes, on the road, all over the hospital terrain, etc. So, we need some wisdom as to where to dispose of this so that those who already fear Ebola coming from Africa, have survived the rigors of cholera allegedly due to the UN not properly disposing of their waste products, etc, will not suspect that anyone becoming ill in the area where this waste is deposited caught it from the “fertilizer” we contributed to the land. I have made inquiries into the procedure that will be followed, but changing time established routines may not be so easy.
The Lord willing, Duane will start this procedure in 2 weeks, so that by the time I arrive with the other 5 team members and we crank up the hospital to a much fuller occupancy (and thus increased water and waste usage), as well as the laundry running full tilt with the soiled laundry/OR drapes, etc, the system will not be in the down and out mode but in the up and running one. Thanks for your prayers for wisdom and strength for all the various aspects of this smelly affair.
In His Service,
Bill for the Haiti Team