Wednesday, June 4

Monday morning, Lois and I drove to University Hospital in Iowa City. The surgeon, Dr Wilkinson, checked the incision and they removed the staples. He was very pleased with how Lois is recovering and gaining strength. We did talk with Dr Wilkinson about what future options we might face. He talked about it from his view point as a surgeon but urged us not to reach any conclusions until we meet with the oncologist, Dr. Halfdanarson, on June 11. Dr Wilkinson expressed serious concern about the tumors in the liver. Waiting to learn all the options is difficult. We were back home in Hedrick shortly after noon.

Lois is resting and napping a lot during the day; eating small meals every 2-3 hours; and walking more everyday. Tuesday she even ventured downstairs a couple of times and today her activity level continues to increase although she is taking more naps, too. Lois enjoys phone calls and visits and we are both enjoying the food so many wonderful people are sharing with us.

Tuesday morning the 3rd, we woke to a severe thunderstorm which dumped three inches of rain in less than an hour and, for the first time in the four years we’ve lived here, the sewer backed up. It started slowly and I was able to get everything off the floor except some flattened boxes behind the freezer. By 10 am 75% of the lower level had at least three inches of water and there were four other men helping try to deal with the flood. At one point there were two pumps that were brought in trying to keep ahead of the rising water. By 1 pm the standing water was gone leaving a lot of soaked carpet on the concrete floor.

A carpet cleaning service spent an hour sucking 260 gallons of water out of the carpet and floor. About the same time, they started working on the sewer line trying to figure out how and why it got blocked. Using a power snake, they discovered a blockage about eighty feet from the sewer access. It took several tries over two hours but they were able to break through and drains started running freely again.

I spent all day Tuesday and all day today trying to deal with the mess and figure out how to put things back in place without allowing them to touch the floor. The carpet has to come up even if we can get it dried out because of the bacteria in the water. I looked at the carpet in a closet and discovered it has a foam backing which is glued to the floor and in won’t even peal up – it disintegrates. I learned that it will take a special chemical to get the carpet up and deal with the remains of the padding.

Hopefully in the morning I can get my office functioning again. Fortunately none of the books in the library were damaged – yet. I’m worried about mildew in the air and have a fan and a dehumidifier running in that room. I don’t look forward to having to move all the books in order to replace the carpet. One of the components that made this so difficult is that much of the stuff from my Mom’s apartment, which we vacated in April, was in the spare bedroom. So I’m being forced to sort all of that quickly.

It’s been a tough time: February, the tragic death of Evyn Gentry; March, Mom fell and broke her neck and the subsequent surgery; April, vacating Mom’s apartment and moving her to a nursing home; May, discovering Lois has advanced cancer and yet didn’t show any symptoms until May 18. Now a flooded basement. I’m tired.

6 thoughts on “Wednesday, June 4”

  1. My prayers have been intensified since I was out of commission because of dizziness. You, of course, have been a priority. I have now gone back to work by riding in with Jamie and Jim picking me up. I know I haven’t stopped by, called or sent a card, but you know that my heart is full of love and concern for what you are going through. Besides, you seem to have a full (if not complete) support system in place, and I will be able to be of more assistance once I’m healthy again. Jim, you really have been hit from all sides, and I’m so happy that you have put on your armor. I don’t remember reading that it protects from tiredness however :). I think that’s where your training has come in! Speaking of training, you seem to have picked the right people to help with the cleanup. May God continue to send his warring angels and may the prayers of the faithful give them strength. Blessings abundant to you and yours. Donna

  2. Jim & Lois,
    We are praying for you & wish we could be there to help. Here are some verses that help us get through our crisis time, I hope they help.

    Psalm 121:1 I lift up my eyes to the hills where does my help come from? My help comesfrom the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.

    Psalm 3:1, 3-5 O Lord, how many are my foes! How many rise up against me! But You are a shiled around me, O Lord; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head. To the Lord I cry aloud, and he answers me from His holy hill. I lie down and sleep, Iwake again, becuase the Lord sustains me.

    We love you both,
    Stephen & Kim

  3. Jim-ours thoughts and prayers are with you both as always. Jim & Lois, May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through [Lois’s illness] and though [the water damage]. May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless [hope in Him, praise Him] at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The One who calls you is FAITHFUL and He will take care of you!! (I Thess. 5:23-24)

    In Him~Joe & Pam Arnold

  4. I understand.Amazing how things are magnified when our nerves are on edge as it is. Its been a very rough time for you. Grace by Chafer would be a good read at this time.

  5. Hello. Joy and Kari have been doign a great job of keeping me updated, but I still appreciate the words straight from you. What a very rough time you and your family have been going through. We love you so very much and want you to remember that! Take care of yourselves, we have been praying for you often adn will continue that!! Hope to make it over to see you in the next week or so! In HIS Grip! Jen and all

  6. WOW,
    I can only imagine how tired you are. It has definitely been a packed full year for you. It makes me think of a quote from Mother Teresa. ” I know that God won’t give me more then I can handle, I just wish He didn’t think I am so strong.” I continue to pray for you and your family. I will be home in July and I am hoping to be able spend some time with you.
    You mention Dr. Halfdannerson as the oncologist, is he a staff doctor or a fellow? I remember a Dr. Halfdannerson as a 1st year resident, but can’t remember when he was there. I don’t have any real clear recollections of him, so can’t give you any input.

    I know that you know this but I just want to send the thought your way. My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness. 2 Cor 12:9
    The Lord will give strength to His people; The Lord will bless His people with peace. Psalm29:11.

    I pray that will have peace within your souls even in the midst of this turmoil. and that you will find renewed strength in the LORD.
    Continuing in Christ, Deb.

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