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From Elaine's CaringBridge Site

Journal entry by Laura Roberts — 6/24/2015

We are in week four of chemo. Week four is the same two drugs as week one. You may recall how week one kicked us around through week two and to the hospital in week three. I was afraid that we would not be able to keep her feeling as good as she felt in the hospital because they were giving her lots of fluids through her port and once that stops it is hard to get her to drink as much as she needs to drink. We left the hospital on Tuesday and on Friday I started to see some of the pre-chemo Elaine. She played the piano some Friday morning which is something she hasn't done in several weeks. I thought her playing was beautiful only a little rusty which comes from not playing in a while. She was a little disappointed and said her fingers were shaking some and she couldn't hit some of the keys she was trying to hit. Also on Friday Elaine started reaching back out to her friends through texting and social media. You could see in how she looked that she was feeling better. It was very encouraging to this Mom. Friday night we went to the Friday Night Lights Tennis Clinic that Rusty and Steve held in Elaine's honor. We stayed for about an hour and Elaine saw her friends and her coaches and got to get out of the house (somewhere besides Children's Hospital) for a little while. She didn't feel as well Saturday as she did Friday so she did not make it to the yard sale but that is just how it goes these days. Some days she just feels better than other days. Sunday she was going to go to church with me and even got ready until it came to the hair and then she just couldn't go. Her hair is really falling out. It started while we were in the hospital and has steady been coming out since. For those of you who know Elaine you know her hair is thick, thick, thick. She really has always had, even as a little girl, great hair. This morning as she was getting ready to go to her chemo treatment she said, "I have the hair of a three year old!" She is wearing hats right now but we have head scarves coming. This hair loss has been traumatic for her and for me not really knowing how to help her with it. I don't seem to say the right thing about it. We are not far away from her having a bald head.

I was very concerned about week four. We had just started recently seeing glimpses of the "pre-chemo Elaine" and I was concerned that it would be short lived. We got through Monday very well. There was no nausea and no vomiting like we had during the first week. The medications they are giving her pre and post chemo are helping Elaine tremendously. Tuesday was very good. We took a friend with us to the chemo treatment on Tuesday and they played board games while Elaine took her treatment. We hope to do more of this as the doctors and nurses really thought it was great and have encouraged us to continue bringing a friend. It has to be done on the days that Elaine feels good so its fun (as fun as it can be at a chemo treatment). Elaine even came out and greeted our Tuesday dinner friend. That was a first so I was feeling good about how week four was going compared to week one. But now it is Wednesday. The bright side is that in week one Elaine was very sick on day one of the week. On week four she feels pretty bad on day three but she is not sick and she has felt pretty good up until day three.

I entitled this post Warrior Strong for several reasons. Warrior Strong is a slogan that was used on t-shirts that were made to sale for Elaine because a warrior is a fighter and because Elaine's high school teams are the Thompson Warriors. Elaine certainly is Warrior Strong. What she is going through is hard on her physically, mentally and emotionally. This is big but God is bigger. The number of Warriors that God has put in our path is tremendous; overwhelming really. From tennis clinics to yard sales, from prayers to meals, God has put people in our path to provide us with everything we need to see Elaine through this fight and continues to do so. Each and every one of you praying for us, volunteering for us, selling items for us, cooking and buying for us, thinking of us, donating for us; each and every one of you are Warrior Strong. Thank you!

Here is one of those messages from God that reiterates His timing is perfect. The title from my devotional for June 24th is God Does Not Forget You. Part of the message says, "We may never understand why some difficult things happen the way they do, but no matter what happens, God is still God and He has not forgotten you."

Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will not be shaken. Psalm 62:5-6

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Romans 8:18

Rejoice and exult in hope; be patient and steadfast in suffering and tribulation; be constant in prayer. Romans 12:12.

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