This is the blog for Gavin and Carrie Jones and family. We live in Papua New Guinea and are working to see lives transformed by the living Word of God through Bible translation. Gavin is a helicopter pilot. Carrie, who has her degree in Public Health, is the lab supervisor and one of five lab techs at our busy rural clinic. Our son, Isaac, was born in 2004 and our quintuplets, Will, David, Marcie, Seth, and Grace, were born in 2012.

Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. The you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man. Trust in the Lord with all you heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. -Proverbs 3:3-6

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

The whirlwind of the last few weeks

Dear friends,

This has been such an overwhelming time - in good as well as hard ways - I haven't really caught my breath to feel "up to" writing a blog post until today. This is going to be a long one with perhaps too many details, so feel free to just look at the pictures. :)

 Brief timeline:

Sept 23 - We found out my darling niece Eloise ("Elo") has a large tumor wrapped around her spine and protruding into her abdomen. Her mom is my sister and best friend, so this was terrifying and devastating, and SO, SO hard to be on the other side of the world from them!
Isn't she beautiful!? (on a carousel at the State Fair)

Sept 25 - The neurosurgeon suspected neuroblastoma, a type of cancer that is not infrequently fatal, and ordered urine levels of tumor markers.

Sept 26 - The urine levels confirmed neuroblastoma, and the ratio of the markers to one another made her prognosis look very grim, nearly hopeless. Everyone was just shattered. Gavin and my friend Stacey immediately booked flights for me as my amazing Bible study friends helped me pack and set up meals and care for the kids and Gavin.

Sept 27 - I got all the way to Cairns, Australia - a HUGE praise was that that day's already scheduled flight out of our remote mission center had one remaining space for me! - and stayed the night with close friends (like family!) James and Nat. Another praise and comfort!

Sept 28 - I got home to Dallas, where my niece immediately crawled up into my arms and rested her head on my shoulder.  I love her so much!

What joy to get to read to my nieces and nephew upon arrival from the airport!
My brother and his wonderful wife have a daughter; my sister and her wonderful husband have Elo and a 4-year-old son. I am a HUGE fan of my siblings, their spouses and their kids!
The following two weeks were a flurry of appointments intermixed with the agony of waiting for results and meetings. Whereas the week previous had seemed to bring only bad news, the next two weeks yielded progressively better and better news.
It's okay if Daddy is the one to measure her head circumference. No way was she letting the techs do it!

Measuring height. This is accurate, right? ;)
- Elo's oncologist is one of the best in the country and specializes in neuroblastoma. Elo just "happened" to be assigned to the BEST!

- The oncologist was much more hopeful regarding her diagnosis and said the ratio of tumor markers is no longer considered reliable or useful, especially given Elo's low numbers. Her's were in the 10's. Others' are in the 1000's before their cancer is caught.

Grabbing lunch on our way home from the first appointment with the oncologist. Two of my favorite people!

- Her MRI and MIBG (radioactive) scans indicated no spread of the disease.
"Helping" the oncologist read the scans. ;)

- Her tumor and bone marrow biopsies were very straightforward, yielded plenty of tissue for analysis, and she recovered beautifully from them. I flew back to PNG two days later.
Waiting for the biopsies.

Elo refused to leave the airport until I was out of sight.
My mom ("Grandma") is standing with them.
The biopsies have since revealed, to our inexpressible relief, gratitude and joy - with great praise to God! - that the tumor is not the most aggressive kind, and the cancer hasn't spread to the bone marrow. The plan therefore is to remove as much of the tumor as is safe, outside of the spinal column, and do a full histology to see if it's the process of dying (which would indicate the tumor in the spinal column is already dead, since it doesn't "light up" on the radioactive scan) or if it's still metastatic and dangerous. If the latter, then chemo will be necessary. We are all praying this tiny girl won't need chemo. We deeply appreciate your prayers, too!

One specific prayer request would be that she won't be scared of procedures.  She couldn't have better parents, though!
The bandaid on her forehead is her funny little coping mechanism. She LOVES putting on bandaids, needed or not. She just finished a popsicle in this picture.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful, Carrie! Thanks for posting this & eliciting prayer for our littlest granddaughter & her parents.


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Gavin, Carrie, Isaac, Will, David, Marcie, Seth, & Grace Jones

Gavin, Carrie, Isaac, Will, David, Marcie, Seth, & Grace Jones

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