Sunday, March 27, 2011

March Madness

This is, typically, one of my favorite times of the year. Daylight extends further into each evening, a round of golf becomes more plausible, and of course, it doesn't get much better than four weeks of tournament basketball.

With certainty, though, you can expect a March shower to ruin a day of golf, a cold front to disrupt an outdoor family event, and only one team in the tournament gets to win their final game of the season. This is the madness of March.

This weekend's visit to the hospital epitomized March Madness. We were thrown a curve ball. After believing, for weeks, that Sarah's tumor was a Grade I or Grade II Astrocytoma, we learned that it is Grade III Anaplastic Astrocytoma. Our neuro-oncologist did explain that, while classified as Grade III, it seems to be low on the Grade III spectrum (a few tests are not yet finalized). Nevertheless, Sarah will begin a six-week radiation regiment in Houston in a couple weeks, and chemotherapy is a real possibility.

Regardless of the classification, it's still only 5% of the size it used to be. For that, we are very grateful.

Each year, I fill out a bracket. Back in the glory days of Arkansas basketball, I would spend an inordinate amount of time conducting a thorough research on every team in the tournament. This may surprise you, but, despite all the research, I never had a perfect bracket. Nobody ever does. We never have all the answers.

Nor do we know all the details of this diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment plan. I doubt that a selection committee would make us a top seed.

Not many miracles start with great odds. I'm convinced God, (like Lynlee), loves a Cinderella story. We have faith that He can heal Sarah's cancer. Stories like ours give Him "One Shining Moment".


  1. Pat & Sarah,
    I don't know what to say. I'm sure no one does. Words don't change much, in and of themselves.
    But, I can tell you one thing...we aren't through praying and God isn't through working.
    Praying til He is done with this,
    The Ellises

  2. I know you do not know me...but I found your blog through Kelly's Korner blog one day awhile back. I usually don't click on links but I did that day.
    I am glad I did because what I see in your journal entries are a very loving and beautiful family that will keep you smiling during this journey. Please know that you and your family are on a prayer chain at our church. I know God will grant you courage, peace and healing because that will be in the prayers!

  3. Sweet Fries Family.... I know you all must know just how many people are praying for You, Sarah, and the Family..
    It's true. God is good, and God has all answers. Stay in the moment and believe in his healing power. I'll see you soon! With all my love and prayers.

  4. I'm visiting your blog from Shanon's...although we've never met, I wanted you both to know that you have more people praying than you probably even know.

    My husband is a pastor in Oregon and we have a little girl and a little boy the same ages as yours.

    My heart is so burdened for you and it's an honor to pray for you to the GOD whom is able to do so much more than we can ever imagine! To the God whom made Sarah's brain and put these days in her life.

    We send our love and are praying for you. Praying for God's will above all...and that it would include complete healing as you become more like Him.

    Josh and Anna Kintigh

  5. I found your blog through Bless Our Nest (which I found through another blog,etc.. you probably know how that works:) and I felt compelled to tell you that your family is beautiful and we will say prayers for you! God bless and our prayers that you receive good news soon=)

  6. Came across your blog through Bless Our Nest and just want you to know that a family in South Carolina is praying for you! May He give you a peace that passes all understanding.

  7. I just came to learn about your blog through Bless our Nest. I have read back through some previous posts and I think you have a beautiful family and a wonderful faith in our Lord. Please know I and my family is praying for your fight with this disease. God Bless you all.

  8. I found your blog through Bless Our Nest! I am keeping you and your family in our prayers!! I too believe in Cinderella stories and I have faith that yours will come true!

    Kelli @

  9. It's often difficult to find encouragement when you're facing a scary medical diagnosis, but I want to share our story.

    My brother was diagnosed with gradeIII anaplastic astrocytoma at age 25 in 2004. After craniotomy to remove the tumor he had 6 weeks of radiation and then 2 years of Temodar oral chemo (one week on, three weeks off.)

    He has never had any complications and besides recovering from surgery and the fatigue and nausea associated with the Temodar, he is completely healthy and feels great. He has chosen to take Kepra to avoid any seizures and the Kepra can make him feel tired, though.

    Nearly 7 years later, we often forget about his diagnosis - the scar that goes ear to ear over his shiny bald head is our only reminder. He has since been married and is the father of two.

    I hope this is an encouragement to you. I'm praying for your family and trusting our Lord is healing you. Hoping one day this season of your life is a distant memory as it is for our family.

  10. Sarah and Pat,
    You and your sweet family continue to be in my mind and prayers. You both are SO eloquent with words, and I am encouraged by your posts. I thank God for your faith, and the peace that HE has evidently given you all. Please let me know if I can help in anyway.

    Love you,
    Laura Venters (on behalf of all of us!)

  11. Sarah & Pat,
    I found your blog through Bless Our Nest. I don't know what to say except share my story. I was diagnosed with Hodkins Lymphoma a year ago. I went through chemotherapy and radition. Thanks to the power of prayer,the good Lord and great Doctors I am in remition. I always say that if my experiance can help anyone I'm here.
    Sarah please contact me if you would like to talk. I'll be praying for you and your family. God Bless

  12. I have been praying for Sarah and your family after reading the prayer request at Kelly's Korner blog. One of my favorite pastors, Matt Chandler, was diagnosed over a year ago with a different brain cancer, Grade III Anaplastic Oligodendroglioma. He is doing well and has shared his thoughts from the beginning of his journey here...
    I hope it will be an encouragement to you all.

  13. Standing in agreement with you! God is able, he is our of my verses when Ellis Anne was in the hospital.."call to Me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things which you do not know." Cry out to him...He does pick you up. LOVE YOUR FAMILY!

    Stephanie Lynch

  14. You don't know me but you know my daughter and she has shared your story with me. I just want you to know that I, too am praying for you & your sweet family.

  15. Sarah-- Hope you know that I am thinking about you all the time -- I came across this video and thought of you-- don't know if you have heard this new song by Laura Story "Blessings" but I thought you would get some encouragement from it.
    Jill Robertson