April 15th, 2009 by Karen

This past week, Stephen has never been far from my thoughts. Because of the amazing generosity of so many family, friends and strangers, he and Rosemary were able to travel to Houston last week for the battery of tests to once again battle the Hodgkins and Non-Hodgkins lymphoma still attacking his body.

If all goes well and he stays healthy, he will go back in another week or two for the medication and treatment to finally kill it and put him squarely in remission.

Knowing Stephen and his profound affect on my little brother and all his friends, the fact that this travel occurred during Easter Week is well, nothing short of symbolic. The last three years Steve has traveled a long road with his friends by his side…being their rock when they doubted, sharing his own fears and being lifted up by them in turn, losing faith and rediscovering it over and over. Taking chemo and radiation treatments, bone marrow and stem cell transplants with short lived success. And then this solitary chance arose, a place that has done so much good for so many in his situation. An opportunity to overcome the death sitting in his chest. He took this journey to Houston akin to Christ’s own trip to Jerusalem. It’s a trip he knows will change everything. His friends celebrated with him and rejoiced, but I know that in each of them is that deep rooted fear that none dare voice…the fear that he is slipping away where they can not go.

Everyone who knows Stephen has high expectations that he will finally be safe and free and he and his friends can go back to joking and playing and being the young twenty-somethings they are and talking about baseball and barbeques instead of these suddenly somber men who use multi-syllabic medical terms in their everyday chatter.

That medicine they are making this week in Houston for Stephen will make him violently ill and so weak he will not be able to have visitors. He won’t be able to see his family or cling to Rosemary’s hand for comfort. He will be denied the creature comforts of home in the interest of sterility and his decimated immune system. He will be completely and utterly exhausted from the retching and the pain of feeling his insides torn apart.

In that IV bag is liquid death.

But in its plastic confines is Stephen’s final chance for rebirth in this world.

Posted in Family, Life | 3 Comments

3 Responses to ' Rebirth '

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  1. southbeachannie said,
    on April 15th, 2009 at 2:30 am

    You always fill my heart with gratitude!

  2. lisa picarille said,
    on April 16th, 2009 at 12:56 am

    my thoughts are with your brother.

  3. Judi Moore said,
    on April 18th, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    What a powerful way to describe Stephen’s quest. I pray it works and that all the love and prayers sent his way will see him through the treatment.

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