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God Is ABLE~

God is able, no…

He is MORE THAN ABLE!!

He does more than we could ask or imagine…and He is always good!

As many of you know this has been a very, very long week for our family.  It has been a hard and emotional week to say the least.  However, the one truth is that~ God is always good, NO MATTER WHAT!!!  We are walking through another opportunity to see, and proclaim His goodness in the midst of the HARD.

 

My sister, Kim, has given me permission to share publicly now the events of the last week.  I apologize right now as I am sure that it will be long and in my normal, narrative manner. =) Mostly, because I want to remember and be able to share with her and others the details that are not coincidental in God’s provisions and protection.

Last Sunday we were celebrating Shiloh’s 7th birthday.  Kim was at a volleyball tournament and was planning on stopping over afterwards.  I got a call saying she wasn’t feeling great, and thought she would go to the emergent care to get some antibiotics for a possible kidney infection, and then would be over after.  Well, shortly after that I received a call saying they were sending her to the ER.  So we quickly tied up the celebration and I headed over to the hospital.  There were all kinds of things thrown out during that first 24 hours (enlarged liver, enlarged spleen, mass on the uterus, possible mono, kidney infection, uti, anemic, and platelets low) and basically more information and a specialist was needed.  All we knew is that Kim, who typically has one of the highest pain tolerances of anyone that I know, was in excruciating pain!  She could hardly move or breathe deep.  They suggested sending her to UMNC [Nebraska Medicine now] because of the variety of specialist there (for those of you out of town, NM is the hospital that successfully treated 3 Ebola patients and thankfully, is nationally known for several of their specialist and research fields, as well as Rachel’s hospital).  We thought she would need to go by ambulance, but they remarkably, let me transfer her to NM myself.

That drive was a tough one on both of us as this is where my mother started her downward spiral of health.  Kim voiced on the way over that she was scared because of what happened to mom here.  I, too thought the very same, so we talked and prayed for God’s protection and provisions during the start of this unknown journey.

The first night more tests were run.  I went home.  Just getting settled in to bed at about 1:30am and the Dr. called and said it looks like we are possibly looking at uterine cancer or liver cancer!!  That threw us both in a tailspin. =( We cried and talked and prayed that God would lead and guide.

By Monday morning there was a different approach.  The specialist reviewed and the results were showing all major organs were fine.  Still issues with the uterus, but that is going to have to be taken care of much, much later.  The hematologist (blood doctor) rounded and set up a bone marrow biopsy.  If you get a chance ask Kim about that, sounds like it was one of the most painful things she has ever endured!  She received a blood transfusion and received platelets that day as well due to the low red and white blood counts and platelets.  Tuesday night the Dr. rounded again and said she had good news. Nothing had come back yet and that was really good.  She was looking for leukemia and different types of lymphoma.  Acute leukemia, would have shown up already.  By Tuesday, several were leaning toward sending her home and starting to hope that Kim had some weird virus that attacked her spleen, or was just really vitamin deficient and would need infusions of iron and other nutrients.  However, Wednesday morning the preliminary results changed everything.  It showed that she in fact did have a rare form of leukemia!

Leukemia is a blood cancer.  Still breaks my heart to write these words about my only. remaining. immediate. family member. It signifies another fight before us!  While I really am a poor patient…through TOO many experiences, I think I am a pretty good advocate.  However, I was really hoping the road was going to be different before my sister.

Preparing for port placement. She was in a lot of pain, and a bit worried, but still managed a weak smile. =)

Procedure finished!

Procedure finished!

A HUGE  silver lining is that the hematologist/oncologist is one of the best in the country.   Also, that she has said over and over that of the leukemia’s this is the best one to have.  It is called Hairy Cell Leukemia (HCL).  The survival rate is very high and while there is not a cure, there are very good treatment options!  That all has given us hope, but we know that we must still walk through the fire of trial of chemotherapy and radiation.  Also, Kim has some issues that severely complicate things.  But still hoping and praying for the best!

IMG_9134

Starting the journey. First round of chemo started!

Praise the Lord, Kim was still in the hospital, because treatment was started yesterday!  (Circumstances surrounding that were also an answer to prayer and faithful friends helping and give advise.)  Thursday, was just one of the many marathon days ahead, I am sure.  She received a port early in the day.  She was a bit scared after the pain of the biopsy, but she did fine.  Then they began prepping for chemo with lots of fluids and several premeds.  They transferred her to the oncology floor about 2.  And, she finally started chemo at about 8:30 last night.  It was quiet surreal to see everything moving so quickly.  An added blessing and just one of the many ways that I know God is watching and caring for a difficult situation.  I had some dear friends that stopped by last night before chemo started that prayed with me and for Kim.  These friends are suppose to be in another country right now, but there were some delays.  Consequently, he KNOWS cancer and treatment options as he worked AT THIS HOSPITAL, and with oncology patients for quiet some time.  Is that coincident…NO that is what a loving God does in hard situations. He provides glimmers of His goodness amidst the tears and heartache.  I am convinced that pain and suffering, while I and most others I know try to avoid it at all costs, work to bring us to our knees and train us to look UP!  He is our strength, He is our comfort and not just in good times or when life is calm, but ALL THE TIME!

Plans:

Not sure how long term treatment will go yet.  I do know that she started chemo on a 24 hour a day drip for the next 7 days.  So I am assuming she will be inpatient for the next week, but it depends how it all goes.  The first goal is to get her spleen down to a normal size (it is HUGE, painful, and the true cause of her coming to the ER in the first place) while wiping out her cell counts.  Pray for pain control!  So far the only thing that has worked is morphine, but the side effects of that have been horrible on her.  Not sure how that will be complicated with the addition of the chemo.  Last night she seemed to tolerate the chemo well.  The pharmacist said that often times people do pretty well on it.  Pray that this is the case!  However, last night her sleeping was inhibited quite a bit by the pain. =(

PRAYERS:

-Pray for rest.
-Pain control
-Please call or text before coming to check on her status.
NO INFECTIONS!! Her immune system will be hopefully going to zero, so visitors will be greatly limited.  If you even have a sniffle, or even think you might…please simply call or send an email to her.   (Cystic Fibrosis has given me some good practice at germ control and protection skills, and I am happy to use them.)  It is for Kim’s safety and really her life.  A cold with no immune system could kill her or at very least complicate things greatly!!   If you do visit…WASH YOUR HANDS upon entering her room!!
-Provisions for Jacob, and our family as our time at the hospital will be pretty intense for a while.
-Health and wellness for our family.  Having 5 kids, makes sickness a higher probability.  Bouncing between hospital and home makes home educating and getting general things taken care at our home a bit tricky for a while, but GOD is able.  Prayer is sustaining!
-Energy for my dear Mother-in-law who has been filling in here at home with the kids in the day so I can be with Kim through this time.
-Financial issues.  We don’t know how long or intensive this treatment will be or her ability to work (with low immune system as a teacher) for some time, so please pray that financial needs are met with rent, car and medical bills.  Along with the expenses that come with traveling back and forth and meals at the hospital for Jacob while visiting. God will provide.
–Wisdom for Dr. and all involved.
-God would bring encouraging people and the help that we all will need over the next few weeks and months!  It will truly take a group effort. Sometimes I think that trials have to be part of God’s plan.  They cause us to be humbled by the necessity of asking for the help of others, and for other people,  realizing that they are needed.  Please know that YOU ALL are needed and appreciated during this time!

Okay, off to try to get some school done with my kiddos before heading to the hospital.

 

Thank you all for your the prayers and well wishes.   They are a blessing to Kim, Jacob and my e!!!

Praising Him through the storm~

Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.  He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave.  Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men. Psalm 107:19-21

Amen!

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16 Responses

  1. As I said to EK when she was diagnosed…”we’re going to kick cancer’s ass!!!!” If Kim wants some pointers on chemo and all the other junk, EK is an amazing ambassador. Although she gets a little tipsy with the pain meds…she is a giggly drunk. 😉 We will pray.

  2. Tell Kim Mark & I are praying for her and if anyone can kick this, she can!

  3. Prayer warriors everywhere, beyond those who are close to your family and know Kim, will be deep in prayer for Kim, Jacob, and your family!

    We would be foolish to think we know God’s plan or how and when He uses conditions of this world to make evident His grace, mercy and love to believers and non-believers alike.

    Rick and I will do our part in intercession through prayer for those important points you list and more Tiffany. And we will (namelessly) ask OUR family of prayer to lift everyone up for healing and the strength to hand this burden to Him and trust in His wisdom.

    Thanks for helping your extended “families” be aware of Kim’s progress and for our ability to serve in specific areas of prayer!

    God’s love and blessings shine through all things!
    Kim Jones

  4. Thinking of all of you through this journey. I have a cousin and dear friend who’ve beat leukemia, and I have faith you will too. Make sure you ask someone there about the Beads of Courage. I know they are available for kids but am sure they have something for adults too. It’s an amazing way to mark your journey and track the many procedures, treatments, and transfusions. Definitely something you will reflect upon once you kick leukemia’s ass!!! Please tell Jake we are just up the street if he ever needs anything. Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers. Tammi Lear and boys

  5. Kim, Praying for you and I know you will kick butt on this.

  6. Kim know that u are covered in prayers!!! U have a wonderfull Godly family that will be with u thru this faith stretcher!! We want to help with babysitting, meals, gas cards, whatevvvva!! Get well soon!!

  7. Good Heavenly Father…please help this beautiful young woman get enough rest to fight and as little pain as possible when going through the fight. Please help heal her and ward off any illness that may affect treatment and please Lord watch over and protect her from the enemy. In Jesus Name…Amen

  8. Thanks for all the information. I have a cold so will not make it up there till I get over this cold. I will be praying for all of you to get though this.

  9. Praying for you all and especially Kim! You will be this I have faith!

  10. Thinking and praying to His Utmost for all of you… Remember to take care of yourself during all of this Tiff, as this is going to take a toll on you.

  11. Sending prayers to Kim and also to you and your family, Tiffany. Sad to hear the news; you sound as though you are on right path and have a positive outlook. I’ll be keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers each day for a ride as smooth as it can be. Take care! ((Hugs!))

  12. Hugs and prayers to Kimmer … I know you’re a fighter!!
    Prayers for Jacob to keep the faith as his mom battles this disease.
    Prayers for Tiff and her family as she helps Kim through this journey.
    Prayers of thanks for Tiff’s mother-in-law for her help with the kids.
    ❤️🙏❤️🙏❤️🙏❤️🙏❤️🙏❤️🙏❤️

  13. Thinking of you Kim & praying god grants you the strength during this time. You are rich in faith & have an incredible spirit, stay strong. Hugs.

  14. Tiffany,
    Sophie and her family are sending thier prayers as well as a huge hug from Sophie. Thank you for that informative and heart felt message about Kim. She is well loved and respected as a teacher and couch at Lewis Cental.
    Could u email me privately. I am a nurse at the Nebraska Medical Center and I know one the nurse coordinators in the oncology department. I do not want to pry but would like to offer any assistance for Kim and your family. I know how overwhelmed you all must be feeling and with all the testing and therapies,, it always good to have a resource to go to for questions. Of course, it would be totally confidential. Just thought I could offer any thing. Prayers…Jeff and Kathy Riedemann and family

  15. When I was 18, I inherited two girls…literally I signed the documents to become the legal guardian for Kim and Tiffany Barents in the event anything happened to their mother before they came of age. God blessed us all to have a wonderful relationship over the years and when we lost dear Vicky in 2009, I still felt in my heart we were like family.

    Over the years our lives have remained intertwined and so today, I am praying for my girls who are loving devoted mothers with families of their own.

    Tonight I am calling out to The Lord asking for His will to be done. Praying for comfort, for wisdom, for peace, for victory, for healing, for wisdom, for rest, and for provision.

    Right now Lord we know you are more than able to do exceedingly and abundantly. We believe this and we trust You Lord in every way. We know you have the answers when we do not even come close. We say thank you Lord for who you are in our midst. in Jesus’ precious name…Amen

    We love you Lord and come humbly before you! We love our girl Kim… and Tiffany,you are a warrior, God will give you strength and endurance…stay strong my dears! I love you!

  16. Colleen and I praying for you Kim. I remember your beautiful smile and your ever present positive attitude in college. Keep smiling and stay positive through this long journey. With faith, prayers, and God by your side, you can beat this!!

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