Extended Stay

Thank you all for praying for Anna Marie! Here is another update. Love, Sarah

A photo session before I left Kansas

Hi All! This is a kind of long update, so summary up front.

Disappointing news: it looks like I’ll be here for a few more days.

Happy news: Christopher is coming for a visit!!!

Now the details.

It looks like I will be here for a few more days. My ANC (a type of white blood cell count) was not 400 like I thought it was yesterday; it was 192. Today it is 247. And it needs to be 1,000 or above for two days before they will discharge me.

For some reason, my body doesn’t seem to be very responsive to the shots that usually rapidly boost white blood cell counts. The doctor did say though, she’s encouraged that production of blood cells IS starting to go up, because this is the first day my platelet count has also gone up. She said usually the two counts go somewhat hand-in-hand. And she said it can happen like this with sitting and waiting for a while, and then all of a sudden they start multiplying exponentially.

The doctor also put in an “order” to the hospital pharmacy for a few of the blood-boosting natural supplements recommended by my oncologist, so I was able to start taking those again this evening.

Obviously, I was hoping to hear that I could go home tomorrow, so this was a little disappointing. But I know God has a plan in all this and is using it for good. I guess it’s really not very often that a mom of six young children has a week in absolute quiet solitude—except for hospital staff in and out, but I enjoy chatting with them. And FaceTime, texting, etc. help me stay in touch and keep me from getting lonely. 

The part I’m really excited about, though, is that Christopher is currently planning to fly out on Monday, May 25th (which happens to be the ten-year anniversary of the morning my parents told me he wanted to come out to meet me and pursue a possible courtship)! I am SO excited to have him coming—a big ‘thank you’ to Aunt Anna and Aunt Mary for enabling this! Please pray I am home from the hospital by Monday, since no visitors are allowed into the hospital.

Since a number of you have enjoyed the hymns I have shared, I’m including one that my sister-in-law shared with me yesterday. These words, penned by a man who knew hardship and suffering, have been a great encouragement to my spirit.

If thou but suffer God to guide thee,
And hope in him through all thy ways,
He’ll give thee strength, whatever betide thee,
And bear thee through the evil days:
Who trusts in God’s unchanging love
Builds on the rock that naught can move.

What can these anxious cares avail thee,
These never-ceasing moans and sighs?
What can it help, if thou bewail thee
O’er each dark moment as it flies?
Our cross and trials do but press
The heavier for our bitterness.

Only be still, and wait his leisure
In cheerful hope, with heart content
To take whate’er thy Father’s pleasure
And all deserving love hath sent;
Nor doubt our inmost wants are known
To him who chose us for his own.

All are alike before the highest;
‘Tis easy to our God, we know,
To raise thee up though low thou liest,
To make the rich man poor and low;
True wonders still by him are wrought
Who setteth up and brings to naught.

Sing, pray, and keep his ways unswerving,
So do thine own part faithfully,
And trust his word, though undeserving,
Thou yet shalt find it true for thee;
God never yet forsook at need
The soul that trusted him indeed.

    -Georg Neumark, 1641; Tr. Catherine Winkworth

Love,
Anna Marie

“I said unto the LORD, Thou art my God:
hear the voice of my supplications, O LORD.
O GOD the Lord, the strength of my salvation,
thou hast covered my head in the day of battle.”
Psalm 140:6-7

14 thoughts on “Extended Stay”

  1. God please continue to increase Anna Marie’s white blood count. Heal her and give her enough strength to be able to go home and be with her family and husband. Sending you lots of positive thoughts and prayers Anna Marie.

  2. You are in my prayers sweet Anna. God is faithful and will never leave thee. Cling to the cross. I have followed your family for many years and it has been such a blessing.

  3. Anna Marie-Thank you for the update. I am praying for you on a regular basis. Your hymns you share have incredible words. I am glad Christopher is visiting you! You all are a neat family.

  4. Always encouraged by your trust in God. May the Lord continue to sustain you and increase your white cells. I struggled with a blood disorder that caused blood destruction and my white cells especially got low. Now, blood work shows only a small clone for the disease. I thank the Lord and share this as an encouragement that He can deal with blood troubles:)

  5. I’m so excited for you that Christopher can visit! May 25th is my husband’s and my wedding anniversary, so that date is special for us too!
    We’ll keep praying for an increase in white blood cells!

  6. That’s wonderful about Christopher flying out! Praying that your numbers will improve and you can be out of the hospital for his visit!

  7. Dear Lord, give Anna strength and healing as she walks through the valley of the shadow of death. Give her many years with her precious children and husband. Amen.

  8. That is such a lovely photo of you and Christopher, Anna Marie. And it’s clear and heartwarming to see that he loves you (that you love each other!) so very much. You have so many people in your corner, praying for you and wishing you well. Thank you for the updates.

  9. Praying that your white blood cells go up and that you go home from the hospital before Christopher comes over. It will be nice you two can be together for a bit. Praying for you every day.
    Beautiful photo of your family.

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