Treatment Resumption update and 54th Anniversary Celebration

Cancer update: Dr. Mashru didn’t see the liver numbers coming down as much as he wanted last week so he delayed the prednisone wean down for a week. A result is that the resumption of immunotherapy is planned for April 6 rather than March 25. That’s a bit frustrating since I am a “let’s do it” guy. But Dr. Mashru and the team are expert and he is giving really good care. My current blood numbers are all good and my strength and straight are both near normal.

Pretty Wife

54th Anniversary: This is my favorite picture from our weekend celebration. Salty’s on the Columbia had our table ready on a beautiful clear Tuesday evening. Sherry sat down and I immediately grabbed my phone to capture both the rose petals and the smile.

Sherry and I love the Ester Lee (Oh see what you can see from the Ester Lee”) Relaxing with a wonderful view of the ocean on a weekend with unusually high/low tides is made for us. The Oregon Aquarium in Newport, caramel corn in Depoe Bay are required!

Ester Lee

Sherry wanted to do our Sunday night dinner at Kyllo’s. We have never beent to this fine restaurant at the mouth of the D River (shortest river in the world). We walked in the door behind another couple and heard the host tell them at least an hour wait for a table. Ugh! So we kept moving. The search took us to five restaurants before we could find a place where we could dine in without having to do the one hour minimum wait. We went back to Kyllo’s at 4:00 on Monday, immediately got a window seat looking over the ocean and a most gracious server to bring our feast. By the time we left, the line was back in place!

Our Tuesday morning was at the Otis Cafe – The Otis Café is famous for serving fresh, delicious small-town food and some unusual menu items. Despite their claim that their “German Potatoes” and local marionberry pie are, as an old Otis saying goes, “well worth the weight”, we stayed with their “way too much” breakfast. Of course, I had to try black molasses toast!

Otis Cafe
Salty’s Anniversary Dinner
January 28, 1968 Beginning

Preparing to resume immunotherapy

Treatments: My blood panel numbers continue to be good, and the weekly reduction of prednisone continues. I have gone from 80 mg (huge dose!) to 30 mg with no problems. The myasthenia gravis which I call droopy/stoopy also is improving: first I shed the neck brace, then the double eye tape and then the walker. I live my life without appliances now I am glad to say. The plan to restart the bi-weekly one medication immunotherapy (Opdivo) infusions on March 25 looks promising.

Busy Life: The Salem Community Retreat (below) was a blast! We spent our time wrestling with Galatians and life as well as hanging with Cyndee. She and Sherry fought chicken riots on the Wii between retreat sessions and doing Cannon Beach food.

Tuesday-Wednesday (3/1-2): Bay Area Cohort in San Jose; Friday (3/4): Portland Bible Leadership Cohort; Monday-Tuesday (3/7-8): Boise Leadership Cohort along with time with the Schlender family while avoiding sick kids ☹; Thursday 3/10): Zoom Leadership Cohort from my office with students around the world including Jon Markey who has lived his whole life in Ukraine. He is now in Hungary trying to get people to safety and supplies to people who are trying to live in the war zone; Friday (3/11): Portland Theology Leadership Cohort; Saturday-Sunday (3/12-13): family times and preach on Jeremiah 29:1-14 at Grace; Monday-Friday (3/14-18): Costa Mesa: Theology and Bible Leadership Cohorts; Saturday-Tuesday (3/19-22): 54th anniversary at Ester Lee Motel in Lincoln City finishing with our traditional feast at Salty’s on the Columbia; 9:00 March 25 Immunotherapy infusion – Hopefully. There is all sorts of Professor Gerry life packed around this of course.

Ukraine: I have friends, nationals and ex-pats, living in both Ukraine and Russia. My heart goes out to them as they are being devastated by the war in Ukraine and the economic collapse in both countries. I heard a Ukrainian pastor tell of a Mom in his church who can neither get baby formula nor produce breast milk because of the terrible stress the war in their city. This is one of millions of stories. It is very personal to go to the Odesa Theological Seminary Facebook page as I have taught there many times.

I am working on Sunday’s sermon at Grace on Jer. 29:1-14 where Jeremiah tells the captives to pray for the peace and prosperity of their enslaving city of Babylon. Peace makes sense, but also that it prosper???? (Jer. 29:7)

Then I think of Paul’s exhortation to pray for kings (that was the terrible tyrant, Nero, in his day!!!) that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. (1 Tim. 2:1-2).

And then Jesus tells me “to love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven.” (Matt. 5:44-45)

Being a Jesus follower messes with my mind and spirit!