Feed your FAITH and your fears will starve .

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Kicked Out of the Land of N.E.D.

Tuesday we went down to SLC to visit with our new radiation oncologist.  She was nice but seemed very hesitant about Trent's case.  As she was doing her examination she found a third lump on Trent's chest. She then suggested we stop in to see Dr. Carr before we left.  After Dr. Carr looked at the lumps he decided he wasn't going to mess around with just a biopsy and would perform an excisional biopsy on all three lumps.  He also wanted to see everything that was going on inside so he ordered a CT of the chest, abdomen, and pelvis to be done on Wednesday at McKay-Dee Hospital.

On Wednesday morning Trent was given another blessing by my dad and Bro. Baird, who had returned from a mission just the night before.  It was another amazing, very comforting blessing, reaffirming all the previous blessings of health.

We left at about 8:15 am and headed to McKay-Dee for the CT scan.  We were supposed to be in SLC by 10:30 for pre-op.  At 11:00 we finally left McKay-Dee with a disk of our scan.  On the way down we talked a little bit.  I know Trent was a little nervous and I was too.  I said, "Trent, I am at my breaking point, but I will break for you.  I will never stop loving and supporting you."  I am sure he thought, "Great, just what I need now, a crazy wife!"  I told him that if it ever comes to it, the decision to stop treatment would be his.

When we finally arrived at Huntsman we were a mere 1 1/2 hours late.  Nice.  Luckily Dr. Carr was running behind as well and we ended up napping in the pre-op room before he arrived at 2:00 pm.

This was at least the seventh time I have kissed him goodbye on a gurney and sent him in to be cut open.  I hate it and I think we have done that enough times.  While Trent was in surgery I spoke with Angelique, a social worker who works with Dr. Carr.  She was fantastic and it felt really good to unload a few things.  She gave me a few things to work on and then suggested that Trent talk to her as well.  Trent is all for that and I know it would help him.

Pretty soon my phone starting buzzing like crazy.  I ignored it because I assumed it was family wanting information but I had none.  Angelique and I finished talking and I went to the waiting room to wait for Dr. Carr.  When I checked my phone I realized one of those calls was him trying to find me.  Oops.  I texted Dr. Carr and he quickly came out and took me to the consult room.  On the way in Katie, from Dr. Gouw's office, called.  That was a pretty good indication of what I was going to hear from Dr. Carr.

He started with the good news, two of the lumps were actually hematomas.  Finally!  After two and a half years we got a hematoma!  (As you might recall, that was the initial diagnosis of the extremely grotesque tumor on Trent's hip that started this whole mess.)  The third tumor was definitely sarcoma.  He removed everything he could but there is likely going to be positive margins on that tumor.  Then he dropped the bombshell.  The CT scan revealed eight new nodules in the right lung.  They are all pea-sized except one that is about the size of a marble.  I calmly took in that news and we discussed what that would mean for treatment going forward.  It would be very difficult to resect those tumors because Trent only has one lung.  The best way to go at those is systemically, meaning more chemo.  Dr. Gouw is already working on a plan and we will meet with him today.   I asked Dr. Carr if the idea of doing more treatment was ridiculous.  He didn't think so but emphasized that we should focus on getting as many good days as we could out of the remainder of Trent's life.  I started to cry then.  Dr. Carr and I both were worried about how Trent was going to take that news.  Dr. Carr said it was his responsibility to tell him then left to do that.  I sat in that stupid consult room all alone and cried.  We have fought for so long, and so hard!  Where is our break?  How many more options can there be?  I kept remembering the blessings that Trent has been given.  I have complete faith that those will come to pass, I have no idea how, but they will.  Right now I am sort of questioning whether or not I am in denial.  But every time I pray I feel calm and at peace about going forward with treatment.  How I wish I could know the end from the beginning!

When I finally saw Trent he was awake and talking to Dr. Carr.  Trent told me later that before the surgery began he knew about the tumors.  As they wheeled him into the OR he saw the scan pulled up on the screen and could see all the nodules.  He is disappointed, but not defeated.  He wants to talk with Dr. Gouw and see what he has to say.  He is willing to keep fighting but wants some sort of guarantee that his life will not consist of him being in bed all the time, too sick to enjoy his kids.

We left the Huntsman shortly after that and went to the Little America.  We stayed over because we knew we would have appointments the next day and I didn't think Trent wanted to ride in the car for an hour right after surgery.  We both crawled into bed and cried.  We called our kids and told them we didn't get good news and they needed to pray for dad.  That killed me.  I can't imagine what they must have thought, listening to us bawling and telling them how much we love them.  Poor kids!  I wish I could rewind the clock and give them a life without all of this mess.  I wish Jonathan knew what Trent used to be like, before cancer ravaged his body and chemo messed up his mind.  I wish, I wish, I wish...

After a while the tears stopped but we didn't get out of bed.  We just laid there trying to enjoy some peace.  We prayed together and that helped.  At about 9:00 we finally ordered some food.  That was the first either of us had eaten all day.  I got Trent back to bed with a fresh ice pack and some pain meds then went to take a hot bath.  I just sat in there and prayed.  I told Heavenly Father that I had faith in His plan and was leaving it all up to Him.  When I finally came out I was feeling pretty calm about everything.

We were both able to get some pretty good rest until about 6:30 this morning.  I got up to change the oxygen tank and get Trent more pain meds.  After that I couldn't sleep.  I finally got up and locked myself in the bathroom to write this all down and get it out so I can deal with what happened yesterday.  We have been in this position before, where it seemed that all hope was lost, but it is not.  We have hope in the priesthood blessings that Trent has been given, hope in the Lord's plan for us, and hope that Trent will be healed.


  1. We are praying as well! Amazing! You guys are simply amazing! :)

  2. Oh, Holly! I am so sorry to hear all of this! We believe in miracles and are praying our hearts out for you guys. I read in Moroni 7 this morning and before I even read your post, I was thinking of you guys. Particularly, verses 29 and 36: "And because he hath done this, my beloved brethren, have miracles ceased? Behold I say unto you, Nay; neither have angels ceased to minister unto the children of men...Or have angels ceased to appear unto the children of men? Or has he withheld the power of the Holy Ghost from them? Or will he, so long as time shall last, or the earth shall stand, or there shall be one man upon the face thereof to be saved?" Your faith is strong and I know that there are still miracles in store. Sometimes things must get very grim before they get better. That way, the miracles will stand out and no one will be able to deny their source. I love the story of Gideon in the Bible, where he kept being told by the Lord to decrease the size of his army. The Lord wanted Gideon to KNOW that his battle had be won by a higher power, not by his army's ability. This battle you and Trent are fighting seems grim, but it will stand as a powerful testimony to you and to those who witness it, that God is a God of miracles. We, knowing how hopeless it now seems, will know that this victory comes from God. There will be no question. We love you guys. We are still praying...

    1. Kristen, that was beautiful and exactly what we needed to hear this morning. Thank you for your love and support...it makes a difference for us.


  3. We love you guys so much and are praying for you. You are all so strong and such examples to the rest of us. Stay strong. Keep us all up-to-date.

  4. We love you dear friends- you are in our prayers!!!

  5. Prayers from us, as always, for the doctors and for Trent, but especially right now for angels to bear you up, dear amazing Holly.

    I feel prompted to let you know that I will be praying that each day in the days ahead will bring you an unmistakable witness -- however small -- that you are not forsaken and that God's promises are sure.

    May you be blessed with clarity to see these witnesses in the events, people and experiences around you, and may they fill you, sustain you, and strengthen you with peace, comfort and joy.

    Much love and faith you and your family, Holly--friends we have never met but for whom we are very grateful.

  6. Holly-

    I just wanted you to know I check your blog daily! I so admire your perserverance! I know this is so taxing on your entire family but I have to say that you are dealing with this with such grace. You are a wonderful example of a motto I have come to love and try to live by... One from my sweet friend's son who lost his cancer battle a few months ago. It's "F2TF". Fight 2 The Finish. I know you are fighting an uphill battle. I saw another little quote the other day that brought me a little perspective, "Strength is a product of Struggle". That's the only way we can grow, is through struggling. I know how bad the stupid cancer struggle is. It is the WORST. But I am grateful for the strength I gained from our struggle. Know there are so many out there that are praying for your miracle. They still exist... :) Much love from The Shaws'! Keep it up! F2TF!!!

    Mandy Shaw

  7. Dear Rasmussen family. We love you all and pray for you to have the continued strength needed to fight this battle. I am so sorry to hear the tumors are back. I am headed to scout day camp today with your sweet Jarom. We just love all you guys so much. You are truly an inspiration to us all!!!