Complications and God’s Grace

Thank you Father for your continued presence and love. We feel your hand here, we know your comfort and care. Thank you all for your continued prayers.

Normally we don’t have vacation sagas and I usually wait a week or so to blog, but Theresa felt I should let you all know now what is going on and how to pray.

Last week Theresa was getting light headed on standing, and not wanting to eat, and getting weaker. She was dry during Chemo on Thursday and had to get a liter of fluid, which helped some. Well over the weekend that didn’t improve, in fact she got worse, unable to eat and only having a half glass to drink all day. Sunday she was worse yet, no fevers, but tired and laid down most of the day. She had been having progressive discomfort with her port and neck. Sunday night I talked with he Oncologist and she got 2 liters of fluid Monday morning before we drove to Cannon Beach for our vacation. She didn’t look great in the car. But once we got there, she laid down and started having fevers and chills. She wanted to wait and see if it would get better. But finally we were both convinced she needed to be seen. So we talked with her Oncologist and drove back 3 hours to the hospital in Olympia, arriving around 10:30 at night. She was burning up on the drive until the Tylenol kicked in. By 3:30am was in a room after being evaluated in the ER. Blood cultures were taken from her arm and port and placed on antibiotics.

That was Monday night/Tue am. Now we know that her port is infected, she is septic, has a large jugular blood clot, and her white blood cell count is falling. Her bone marrow took a bigger hit with this chemo and infection so she has become more anemic and her protective white blood cells have dropped to the neutropenic level (body having difficulty mounting a response). She is pretty tired and the port and clot makes it hard to swallow due to pain. Her blood cultures are positive and will know more tomorrow if she has a bad infection that will need 4 weeks or more of IV antibiotics. She will get her port out tomorrow before her next anticoagulation dose.

She is done with chemo now too. She has had progressive gastrointestinal pain due to autonomic dysfunction from the chemo. So for now we have to stop active treatment and reassess in a month or so.

I am grateful to be on vacation so I can be with Theresa during this time.

She probably won’t come home before Sunday, barring anything else popping up. She is pretty sick, but in good spirits. We are thankful for God’s prompting and peace during this time as well as all your thoughts and prayers.

Our pastor just stopped by read from the 46th Psalms and prayed with us. A couple of verses from Psalms 46 are reassuring “God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear when”… bad things happen. “Be still, and know that I am God!”.

And in my reading today from Habakkuk 3:17 “EVEN THOUGH the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; EVEN THOUGH the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; EVEN THOUGH the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, YET I will rejoice in the LORD! I will be joyful in the God of my Salvation! The Sovereign LORD is my strength! He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able to tread upon the heights”. Despite it all, we praise Him for He has a very tight grip on us and won’t let go EVER. AND his promises are SURE.

Will update more later. Thanks for all your prayers.


  1. Glenn Palmer says

    Continuing to pray……
    Thank you for the update and for sharing those scriptures.
    God is faithful.

  2. Debbie Fine says

    My dear Friend is so sick! May you both witness Gods tender mercies and yes his promises are sure! Theresa has taught me so many things, I was making cookies for my dental office yesterday, thinking about baking cookies with her and how I USED to just take a glob of dough and plop it on a pan… NO Theresa insisted on parchment paper. Teaspoon sized cookies perfectly rounded and pressed. So I must say, her cookies are way more pretty amd now Im making them that way. God shapes us in do many ways some of which are very difficult, but His love is always close. Loving you now and forever Theresa

  3. Michael Dujela says

    So sorry to hear of these complications and your struggles . We pray for you often as a family and continue to admire your valiant approach and faith. Thank you for updating us all. Best wishes to your family!

  4. Priscilla Christenson says

    Thanks for the update and sorry to hear how sick you are right now Theresa. You are so brave and have been through so much Theresa, I pray daily for God’s hand on you and for complete healing. Psalm 46 is one of my favorites and a big help in times of trouble. Take care and get better! Love in Him, Priscilla

  5. Barb Powell says

    My prayers and love are always coming your way. The two of you are so inspiring to me. I wish I had such faith.

  6. Jodi Laverell says

    I appreciate the update and continue to pray for her healing. I’m sorry your vacation has taken this turn. I’m asking God to heal Theresa now. May you all be filled with love and healing. ❤️

  7. Donna Rao says

    Dear Paul & Theresa, I am sad that Theresa, is feeling so miserable and required hospitalization. It’s fortunate that you are on vacation, Paul and able to be with Theresa during this difficult time.. I sincerely hope Theresa will start feeling better soon! I am sending my love along with healing thoughts & prayers. Hugs,
    Auntie Donna ❤️

  8. Donna Rao says

    Dear Paul & Theresa, I am sad that Theresa, is feeling so miserable and required hospitalization. It’s fortunate that you are on vacation, Paul and able to be with her. I sincerely hope Theresa will start feeling better soon! I am sending my love along with healing thoughts & prayers. Hugs,
    Auntie Donna ❤️

  9. Kathy Spencer says

    Wanted to stop in and say hello tonight but didn’t want to risk sharing any germs. You continue to be in my prayers and firmly in the palm of God’s hands. “Fear not for He is with you”.

  10. Jon Wiley says

    It was great to see you in Cannon Beach, even if it was for a short time. We are praying for God’s comfort and healing and for the Holy Spirit to manifest in new ways each day. Your faithfulness is a powerful testimony. Thank you for sharing and we will continue to lift you all up.

  11. DeAnna Rooklidge says

    Paul & Theresa, I was praying that you would be able to have a sweet time away with your family at Cannon Beach; but I love your perspective and the declarations of Habakkuk 3. I was recently reading Habakkuk and thought of you and Theresa and your decision to trust God in the midst of all the pain and struggle you have been facing. It is an act of the will to declare His Faithfulness and Goodness – to rejoice in the Lord when the battle is raging around you. He IS Faithful and His promises ARE Sure. May He be your Rock giving you Rest and Hope as you pour out your hearts to Him. (Ps. 62) Praying for you.

  12. Debbie O'Connor says

    I have been praying, thank you for keeping us updated. I have a whole network praying with me, too. Love you guys.

  13. Barb Freeman says

    Love to you and Theresa. . . we continue to hold you and your family in our hearts and prayers.

  14. Toni Belveal says

    So sorry to hear this. You both are constantly in my prayers. Thank you for allowing us to follow this journey with you. Praying for God’s healing and peace.

  15. Sherrie Conrad says

    Praying for you in this storm. May God give Theresa strength for each new day & may you all be surrounded with HIS strength & perfect peace. His mercies are new every morning.

  16. Laura says

    God Bless Teresa and Your Family, praying for you and your family especially Teresa for a peaceful and painful time ❤️✝️

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