February 16, 2015

The months of January and February 2015 have been gradually more difficult months for Jane.  On the cancer front, the latest CT scan reflects that the cancer has spread to Jane's liver and lungs.  This is unfortunately the natural progression of the disease and the doctors are monitoring the situation.  On the pain management front, Jane has continued to experience increased levels of constant pain and discomfort.  The doctors have switched Jane's primary pain medication and increased the dosage to offer some relief.  Jane continues to battle fluid build up in her legs and abdomen areas.  Jane's M. D. Anderson doctors continue to monitor the situation and attempt to manage the side effects of pain and fluid build up as best as possible under the circumstances.

Jane was able to visit with family and friends over the holiday season.  Jane continues to attend daily Mass and pray for everyone.  Jane maintains a positive attitude and cheerful outlook through everything.  We are forever grateful and thankful for all your prayers, support and help over the past few months.  Many thanks again.

Update...{December 29, 2014}

Jane was discharged from M D Anderson hospital this afternoon, Monday December 29th as Jane has been able to tolerate a liquids diet without significant pain.  Jane has been sent home with antibiotics to combat infection, pain meds to manage her pain levels and a restricted diet.  Jane's doctors will monitor how Jane progresses over the next few days.  Thanks to everyone for your prayers and support as we are very grateful for our family and friends.  Have a Happy New Year and enjoy the remainder  of the Christmas season.

December 29, 2014

Since Saturday Dec. 27th, Jane has been in the hospital battling a partial bowel obstruction as the cancer tumors have grown to restrict her bowel movement.  This is quite painful and Jane has been on a high dose of pain medications to battle this side effect.  The doctors have advised us that the obstruction often resolves itself with the passage of time so this will become a "wait and see" approach.  Jane's diet has been restricted to small portions of liquids only and regular pain medications.

We appreciate your continued prayers and support.

December 10, 2014

     Since our last update in October 2014, Jane has continued to suffer from certain side effects related to the hormone therapy protocol.  After consulting with Jane's M. D. Anderson doctors, Jane has discontinued the hormone therapy for the time being.  The doctors, however, continue to treat the side effects related to Jane's cancer and the side effects from the various drugs taken over the past three years.  Although you would never know it because Jane is strong, Jane is in constant pain that often elevates during different times of the day and night.  The doctors are doing all they can and Jane continues to persevere and meet each challenge with positive hope and a renewed sense of vigor. 

    Since Jane was diagnosed with a recurrent, metastasized cancer in October 2011, we have asked all of you to pray for Jane's healing if it is God's will through the intercession of Blessed Bishop Alvaro del Portillo.  Bishop del Portillo (1914 - 1994) started out life as a Spanish civil engineer in the 1930s and then was one of the first three men ever ordained for Opus Dei, a Personal Prelature of the Catholic Church, in 1944.  He served as the right hand to the Opus Dei Founder, St. Josemaria Escriva, in the formative years of the organization and then succeeded St. Josemaria as the second Prelate of Opus Dei from 1982 to 1994.  On his death in March 1994, Pope John Paul II recalled Bishop del Portillo's "zealous priestly and episcopal life, the example he always gave of fortitude and of trust in divine providence and his fidelity to the See of Peter."  In 2002, a cause for the canonization (sainthood) of Bishop del Portillo was initiated and, in 2012, as approved by Pope Benedict XVI, the Vatican announced that his life had been recognized as one of "heroic virtue", which is the first step towards sainthood.  From this time on, Bishop del Portillo was styled as a "Venerable Servant of God".  In July 2013, Pope Frances published a decree declaring the miraculous character of a cure for a young Chilean boy attributed to the intercession of Bishop Alvaro del Portillo.  Bishop del Portillo was beatified on Sept. 27, 2014 in his birth city of Madrid, Spain and is now referred to as "Blessed Alvaro del Portillo."  In the Roman Catholic church, Blessed Alvaro del Portillo needs one more miracle to be attributed to his intercession in order for Blessed Alvaro to be officially declared Saint Alvaro!

     The Christmas season is already upon us as we are in the second week of Advent.  Jane's two sons from LSU will be coming home in the next few days for a month long winter break.  Jane plans to spend a quiet holiday at home with family and friends.  We wish each of you a very merry Christmas and please know how grateful and thankful we are for so many family and friends at this very special time of the year.  We pray for all of you every night. 

October 28, 2014

     Jane was originally diagnosed with a recurrent cancer in October 2011 so the month of October 2014 represents the third anniversary (3 years!) of Jane's initial diagnosis of a recurrent, metastasized adenocarcinoma of the uterine cervix.  Since that time, M D Anderson and its many doctors and staff have provided incredible professional care to Jane.  Jane has been through two formal clinical drug trials and a few other more standard type chemotherapy treatments; Jane is presently on a hormone therapy protocol.  To battle the related side effects that have accumulated over the past three years as a result of the cancer treatments, Jane has managed through multiple out patient procedures, hospital visits, emergency room visits, etc. and lots of help from M D Anderson supportive care to manage pain levels and related side effects.

    So far, Jane continues to hold her own and stay as active as possible.  Although Jane still suffers from acute pain and spasms, she remains cheerful, positive and hopeful.  One of our doctors mentioned during one visit that one way to beat cancer is for cancer patients to live as virtuous and as normal a life as possible.

    At this point, we are simply grateful for each day, for the small things like a visit from an old friend, and also for the big things as October 2014 is also the month of Jane's 23rd wedding anniversary.  Through it all, Jane's many family and friends have been right there along the way, praying, laughing and helping Jane to get better and feel better.  We could never thank you enough for all your support, love and assistance, but please know that we pray for each of you every day. We have come a long way and we are ready for the journey ahead!

September 29, 2014

Over the past year or so, Jane has been battling the accumulation of abdominal fluid that has caused significant abdominal pressure and pain from time to time.  Paracentesis is a procedure to remove fluid that has accumulated in the abdominal cavity (peritoneal fluid), a condition called ascites.  A common cause of ascites is cancer like Jane is suffering from at this time.  Jane has had the fluid drained over the past few months, but the fluid continues to reaccumulate.  Since there is the potential for continued reaccumulation of the fluid on a regular basis, Jane's MD Anderson doctors have installed a long term drainage catheter in her abdomen to allow Jane to drain the fluid daily at home.  So far, things are working great.  However, the general pain from Jane's cancer has continued to elevate so Jane's MD Anderson doctors have increased her pain medication levels to better manage the daily pain. 
Jane continues to maintain a positive outlook and hopeful spirit as we head into Fall weather.  It will be three full years at the end of October 2014 since Jane was diagnosed with  recurrent, metastasized adenocarcinoma of the uterine cervix.  Since that time, it has been kind of a roller-coaster, and we have requested many of you to pray to Don Alvaro de Portillo, the first Bishop of Opus Dei, who was recently beatified by the Roman Catholic Church, to intercede on Jane's behalf.  We ask that you continue to pray and remember Jane and her caregivers in your daily prayer intentions.  We remain grateful and are indebted to so many of our family and friends who have helped us and prayed for us along the way!

August 22, 2014

Jane had a procedure performed at MD Anderson to drain a significant amount of abdominal fluid which had accumulated over the past few months.  This should provide Jane with at least temporary relief to get her through the next few weeks or so.   This build up of fluid is fairly common and the doctors are doing the best they can under the circumstances.   Jane continues to persevere and hold her own against the recurrent, metastasized adenocarcinoma cancer and the accumulated side effects over the past 34 months.  As you would expect, some days are better than other days but we are grateful for each and every day!

Many of you ask how can you help and you have helped by your prayers, rosaries, Masses and many cheerful notes and messages to Jane.  Jane's two older boys are back at LSU, with our remaining Strake Jesuit Junior at home so the house is a little less active and quieter.  We sincerely thank everyone for staying diligently with us through the highs and lows and also being very helpful over the last two and a half years plus!  We pray for you too as we march on.