January 11, 2008
Note from Dr. Cook
I am so pleased to share with you that I have just finished my fifth chemotherapy session about an hour ago and everything has gone okay for now. I want to thank you for your prayers and for all of the concern you have shared with me. Your notes of encouragement and e-mails have been a blessing.
I particularly wanted you to know how much I appreciate your prayers. I wanted to give you some information on this that I think will show you how important prayer has been for me and my recovery.
You may remember that on December 28, we posted on the website that I really needed your prayers for my white blood cell count. On December 20, the white blood cells were at 1.0. On December 26, they were just at 1.2, and by December 28, they had moved to 1.5. I was supposed to begin chemotherapy on Monday, December 31, but they said they could not because my white blood cells needed to be up to 4.5, which is in the lowest point of the normal range for white blood cells for an individual. We sent out a prayer request that day asking for you to particularly pray for my white blood cells. They did not give me another blood test until the morning of January 7, and within that short ten-day period, the white blood cells went to 5.1. I only needed 4.5. Today, when I was tested, they were at 5.9. So I want to tell you that I am so grateful for all of your prayers and for God answering your prayers, and I am grateful that I have been able to finish this third session of chemotherapy.
What does the future hold? Only the Lord knows, but I have turned it all over to Him, and I feel safe in His hands.
The doctor said that there is a good possibility that this strong dose of chemotherapy that I have just gone through will place me back in the hospital within the next two weeks. I may be in as long as six to eight days. He does not know, but he says that about 50 percent of his patients have to go back into the hospital because of fever and complications. So, of course, you know that my prayer now is that I will not have severe problems over these next several weeks. However, I am just turning this over to the Lord and asking Him to use it for His glory, but I really do not want to have to go through another hospital stay.
Then, in about six weeks, he will do a one-day chemotherapy with me, and then after that, we will wait another month, and he will do a bone marrow biopsy, and he can then determine if I have gone into remission. So that is my greatest prayer request at this time for all of you to pray for me to go into remission from the leukemia.
I am clinging on to Jeremiah 29:11 that the Lord still has plans and a hope and future for me. I am still quoting every day my life verse from Proverbs 3:5-6 that I need to lean not on my own understanding and just trust in the Lord. Then I continue to go back to Isaiah 40:31 and just realize that I am waiting on the Lord through all of this. (“Be still and know that I am God.”) He is certainly teaching me and helping me to grow as a Christian. I cannot get to the point of telling you that I am glad that this leukemia has happened; however, I am trying to take this situation and ask God to help me grow as a Christian through it. I would appreciate your continued prayers. Thank you for all of your love and concern. I will always be grateful and will never forget your expressions of encouragement.