The Struggle Has Ended

Greg Hewlett passed away on January 17th after nearly eight years of battling colon cancer. While we grieve his loss, we are comforted to know that he is with his Lord.

If you would like to leave your thoughts on Greg, please see this thread.

If you would like to make a charitable donation in Greg's honor, please see this thread.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

To Houston on a beautiful day

bguy.jpegToday is a gorgeous day. Sprinkled clouds float above in this crisp spring air. The Denton jazz festival is playing live on KNTU. The past three weeks I have felt as well as I have in a year. I've been getting back into the regular flow at work. I even got in a little golf last Friday. As I drive around doing errands before my trip, it is hard to believe that cancer even exists. But cancer likes to lurk in the dark and come back uninvited. Is it hiding or is it gone? It's voice gnaws on me in the back of my mind, causing me to wonder if this beautiful day is a calm before the storm. But what can I do? - I shall enjoy the day and the Lord who gave it to me. I pause, "Have mercy on me, Lord". Now let's turn up that jazz and hit the road.

We're off to Houston today for a round of tests and consultations with my doctors. Two big issues are to be addressed:

(1) The first is the possibility of cancer recurrence. My CEA test results this week in Dallas were down to 6.4 (it was at 10 three weeks ago). That report made my week. But it is still high (should be under 4) and thus they are still concerned it could be recurrence. Tomorrow morning I take a PET scan to expose any cancer that could be causing it to be high. They will also retake my CEA again.

(2) The second issue is that of these strangely dilated veins connected to my liver. My case was presented at a MDACC GI medical conference of all the experts (so my doctor tells me), and they still don't know what is causing this problem. It is not at an alarming state of dilation, but if they continue to grow, it could be life threatening. Interestingly, they now notice that back on my pre-surgery CT scan in December, these veins were slightly dilated. I'm not really sure what this means. To get a better idea of what is going on and what possible remedies they might pursue, I am having an endoscopy tomorrow after the PET scan. This is a procedure in which they put me under general anesthesia (a bit stronger than that of a colonoscopy, but not like surgery) and then stick some sort of diagnostic contraption down my throat. They say that from inside, they will be able to get a look at these veins.

Then on Wednesday morning I will meet with Dr. Vauthey, my liver surgeon, to discuss the findings of these tests and we'll discuss the approach from here. Dr. Hoff may be there for the Wednesday meeting, as well. I really have no idea what comes after Wednesday.


Terrie Jones said...

Praying for you and Christine.. May He give you
His peace. In His love, Terrie

Maria & Craig said...

Greg- you have alot on that plate next week. We're praying for you daily that the cancer won't come back. We're trusting in God for complete healing.
Love, Maria & Craig

Debbie Peck said...

Know that we are and have continued to pray for both you and Christine. We are all in His hands; and you so correct, rejoice in the moment and His grace that sustains us no matter what.

Judy Kovacs said...

Greg! I love your outlook on life. God is so good and faithful. He will not let you down -- whatever comes. Love to Christine, too.

johnciavola said...

Our prayers are with you and Christine, as always.

Madeleine said...

Greg and Christine ~ you are precious in His sight, you are fearfully and wonderfully made, all His promises to you are faithful and true. May He bless you with good health and length of days and may you experience His peace which passes all understanding as you endure under this trial. Psalm 139
With love and prayers,

Sally & Pete said...

We are thrilled to hear about your 3 weeks of feeling better than you have in a year! What a gift! Hope testing goes well & that results are conclusive. How's Christine? With love, Pete & Sally

Carl said...

This is your daft father-in-law speaking. To answer your question as to what comes after Wednesday, Thursday comes after Wednesday and then Friday and so on until the Lord comes again. My only point is that I'm firmly trusting in the Lord that you are healed of cancer and that Christine will be healed of fibromyalgia. The only thing I don't know is when, but I know it will happen in your present lives on this earth.
Also, I am officially designating you as the poet laureate of the Mantegna family. Your continual stream of poetic wordsmithing is beautiful, and when Christine gets better, she can join you in this endeavor. Miss you both.

Willeyne Berger said...

Keep up the marvelous attitude. You are definitely an inspiration for us all. We continue to pray for you. Willeyne
Hope to see you in June!