Saturday, November 1, 2008

The Beginning

A while ago I found a lump under my arm that seemed to be growing. I wasn’t very concerned – after all my risk of breast cancer is practically non-existent. Dr. Roland was concerned though, and helped us schedule an appointment with a surgeon. He also told us that I’m pregnant. For those who have lost count, this baby is our seventh. (I got rid of all the baby stuff almost three years ago.)

The surgeon called last Sunday afternoon (October 26) to let us know that the biopsies he had performed showed malignant cells. He also took the time to let us know that my pregnancy provides the worst possible complication to cancer treatment and survival. He provided more details than I care to share, or even than I remember. Monday was filled with tests that confirmed the biopsies.

My care has been referred from Lutheran Medical Center to Saint Joseph Hospital (St. Joe’s to everyone around here). St. Joe’s is one of the few hospitals that receives funding from the Susan G. Komen foundation (the pink ribbon people) for breast cancer treatment, and they offer high risk obstetrical care. This transfer of care has slowed the initial process of determining the stage of cancer progression and treatment plans. I have several appointments at St. Joe’s this Wednesday, November 5. We hope to gather lots of information that day. Many complex decisions lie ahead. The Lord has made Himself so near to us during the very difficult moments of the last week. Please pray that I will keep my focus on Him; everything else is too overwhelming.

Our church and friends have leapt to our assistance. We are amazed at the care and love that everyone is offering to us. Thank you.


Amy said...

Amy, We love you and are praying for you guys.

"When my anxious thoughts multiply within my, Thy consolations delight my soul." Psalm 94:18

Nick said...

This note's for both Amy and Jon. We love you guys and are so proud of the way you're rearing the dear family God has given you. It is a blessing to know that you know our Heavenly Father and that you will lean on Him each day. We were reminded in church this morning, by Dr. John Monroe, of the wonderful "fear-not" truths in Joshua 1. The one that fairly shouted to us from the text was from verse 5. God says, "...I will not fail thee..." He has never failed the Marsceau family, and He will never fail Amy and Jon either.

You are in our prayers.

Love, Uncle Dan, Aunt Priscilla, Nicolas, and Nathanael

Aunt Debbie and Uncle Phil said...

Grandma Bixby informed us of these recent developments as she was visiting here this past week. The verse God comforted us with in the time of the loss of our daughter was Ps. 18:30, "As for God, His way is perfect; He is a buckler to those that trust in Him." Please know that you are in our prayers.

Rachel said...

Amy & Jonathan, Our hearts and prayers are with you both, as well as with Cara, John, Nathan, Arielle, Eliana, Jeremiah, and the 7th little one. The Lord Jesus knows all -- so we can only give each of you to HIM for sustenance, strength and wisdom in these difficult times. This has touched Uncle Jim's heart, also.
Much Love,
Aunt Rachel, for Uncle Jim, too

Donna said...

Amy and Jon,
My heart has been heavy since hearing the news, but I know that our Sovreign Lord is holding both of you and the kids in his loving hands at this time. I'm praying for you daily almost hourly.
Love you both,
Donna Ruth

Bob and Bonnie said...

Dear Amy,
We were dazed by the news. You are suddenly thrust into the forefront of our prayers. God chose this moment to accelerate many fold his teaching of Himself to you, and your comments indicate that he is doing just that--Col. 1.9. What an encouragement you are to us. We love you even though we don't often write or express it. May God's perfect will be accomplished as we all go through this together with you, Jon and the children. You are very precious.
Love, Uncle Bob

Chandra said...

We are praying that our Lord Jesus who raised Lazarus from the dead will completely heal your cancer. We are also praying wisdom for the medical team who will plan the treatment and cure of the cancer in your body. Most importantly, we are praying that our Heavenly Father will guide Pastor Jon and you to make the correct decisions this week about your treatment.

Josh and Salome

AmyQ said...

We will definitely be praying. We just had a lady in our church diagnosed as well. We will add you to our church list as well. May you remember the faithful God we serve in this most challenging moment.

Anonymous said...

You don't know me, but I am a client/friend of Amy's. I wanted to let you know that I am praying for you and for your family. We have a beautiful God and His plan is to give us hope. He has made your burden heavy on my heart and I will continue to pray for you.
A sister in Christ,

Matt and Emily Sealy said...

Amy, just wanted to let you know that my husband and I, as well as our church here in Canada are praying for you. You have been much on my mind today, and I have prayed for you all throughout the day, and will continue to do so.
In Christ Alone,
Emily (Doan)

Rhonae and Steve said...

We have prayed much for you in the few days since Jon’s call. We pray for grace, strength and wisdom. May God make these verses real to you. We love you. Rhonae and Steve Stodola
Psalm 56:3 What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.
Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
James 1:5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.

Johanna said...

Jon and Amy,

We are praying daily for you and the kids. We know He will show Himself strong to you during this trial. Our hearts are very heavy at this news.

We love you,
Brian and Johanna (Bixby) Hanson

Nick said...

Hi Amy & Jon,

I just wanted to send a quick note to let you know how much we love you. This news is such dificult news to handle, but I hear from your Mom, that you are doing pretty good in spite of all this. I know this strength comes only from the Lord. What a BIG blessing to know that you have the faith to walk through this journey. We are praying for healing!!! Also, we are praying for wisdom as you have many decisions to make. We love you so much!!


Aunt Lydia, Uncle Bill, Laura, Carissa, Mallory, and John

Impact4Him said...

Amy and John,
We will be praying for you! I am encouraged by Isaiah 43:1b&2. Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee." He will go with you thro this trial, He will not leave you or forsake you!!
We will pray for you daily!
Because of Christ,
Becky & Jeff Whiteford

Jessica Baker said...

Jon and Amy, you are on our minds and hearts. We are praying for you!

Garland and Jessica Baker

Anonymous said...

John and Amy,

This is Steve Ford. I just wanted to leave some words of encouragement and help during your time of distress and frailty. Times like these remind us just how frail we are and how uncertain our existence is in these mortal bodies. Remind yourself that though you are surpised, God is not. Though you were not prepared for this news...God was and is! Though this was not in your plan is was in God's...that you were already dying from birth and only a life of sin can speed up the process not cancer...since sin brings death...your frail body of sin has only kept you from truly living...that God and Jesus alone can save you from the body of this death....let this cancer, which God can easily remove at any moment if He so pleases, let it serve you as a gift or blessing....causing you to invest your time more carefully and wisely..wasting not even a moment..use it as a tool to live even more in the spirit and less in the II Cor 4 and 5.
Paul said also in II Cor 12:9,10...and he said unto me, my grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness. most gladly therefore will i rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Therefore I take pleasure in distresses for Christ's sake for when I am weak, then am I strong.
I am become a fool in glorying....

So Amy and Jon...I know that you both and your children are about to become very strong..though you may feel the weakness of the flesh...never forget that this life even if lived to the fullest is but a blimp on eternity's screen...I look forward to rejoicing and glorying with you no matter the outcome...I myself look forward to the day when I can shed this body of sin and death...It is the spirit that God is concerned with not your can get on the Hallelujah Acres diet "God's way to ultimate health"
and perhaps get rid of that cancer with foods God has already provided for us to keep us healthy...I know many people who have ridded their bodies of all types of cancers and even hiv. My buddy in Shelby was dying of aids and got on the diet and lives quite a healthy life now with no signs of the virus at all now. I am sure you were familiar with Dr. Greorge Malkmus in Shelby...they took over our old ABC can google his name and find so many stories and websites with stories not different from your own...with amazing outcomes...

Either way...I hope to encourage you that no sickness dad has had his 70th surgery this year and has had 3 strokes and 4 heart attacks....and many other near death moments...yet God sustains him...because God does what He wants to do! He decides when his servants have served enough or fulfilled His I think you need not worry another moment about this small thing!!!
submit yourself wholly to God and he will lift you up!!!

you brother and friend in Christ Jesus,

DURHAM, NC 27713



Brandi said...

Hi Amy,

Just wanted to let you know that I am thinking and praying for all of you. Please tell all of my recently toothless family that their cousin wishes she was there to call them all "snaggletooth"! I miss you all.

Love you VERY much,

Lisa said...

You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I want you to know that you are an amazingly beautiful and strong woman. God has given you the strength to get through so many challenges in life, this is the next step for you. I have faith in you and your relationship with our lord that this to shall be overcome. He will stand by you and your family in your time of need. Know that we all love you very much and are praying for you and your precious family. I love you guys!!! Your cousin in Ga. Lisa Caldwell-Burns

Bob & Sherry Carter said...

Jon & Amy,

We just want you to know that you all are in our prayers. It was a little more than we could take in when Dutch told us Sunday noon. We know God has it all in His Hands. We have told our kids and all of their churches will be praying for you. We love you and pray the Lord will give you all much grace and healing, if it is His will. You are special to us, Bob & Sherry

Anonymous said...


My children and I have been praying for you and your family often. It was an encouragement to talk to you and to hear you bless the God who made you and knew about this from eternity past. May your love for Him and your comfort in His care continue to grow. God oft gives us days of gladness, shall we grieve when he sends seasons too of sadness. God is Good! We love you and are praying for your doctors appointments today and all the decisions that you and Jon and the doctors have to make. God will give wisdom.

Love Mary

Dee Hall said...

Dear Amy,
Be still and know that I am God. This verse has sustained me many times during trials and testings.
We have been praying for you and especially as you went today.
Dee Hall

The Dinakars said...

Dear Bixby Family,

May the good Lord protect you and keep you always. Our prayers are for each one of you in these tough days.

In him,

julietccret said...

I don't know you personally; our mutual friend, Catalina, told me of the trials God is allowing in your life. My mom went through a similar situation just a few years ago, so when I heard your story, my heart was burdened. I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

Romans 8:35-39 "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: 'For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.' No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Sunil and Caroline said...

Dear Amy & Pastor Jon,
You are in our prayers. May the Lord grant you Peace and wisdom as you meet with the Doctors and make decisions. Your family is a blessing in the Tamil Church gathering at Tri City. We will continue to uphold your family in our prayers.

Love & Prayers,
Sunil & Caroline.

Amber Caldwell said...

HI Amy,
Just want you to know that you are in our prayers. I had my grandmother in-law put you and your family on their prayer list. So you can feel good in knowing even more people are praying for you and your family. I just cannot help but to think that all this is going to be ok. I believe you are strong enough to get through this. And i believe that GOD is still not done with his plan for you. I love you. and we are here for you.

Richard&Angela Mansell said...

We are holding you and your family up before the throne of grace during this difficult time! May you feel God's love, strength, peace and grace every step of the way. We love you guys!

Judith said...

Wehave been praying for you and your family since we heard of your illness~May you feel our Lord's presence in all that lies ahead of you and yours~we are also praying that your folks are able to be with you following your surgery~we know many of the folks in our church are also praying~Psalm 46:10

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