Category: Carrie-Anne (Page 1 of 12)

On the Mend

Just a short post today to update you on my wife Carrie-Anne. Yesterday’s reconstruction surgery went perfectly, of course — these folks at MD Anderson know what they’re doing. They started the surgery at just after 7am and we were both back here at the Hampton Inn before 12noon! Crazy how quickly they turn it around out here! She spent most of yesterday afternoon and evening on pain meds, slipping in and out of sleep. I cooked chicken spaghetti for dinner while Carrie-Anne directed me from the couch. By the way, it is impossible to heat up frozen cheese bread slices without an oven. She ate two bowls of the spaghetti and slept well last night, we both had hearty breakfasts this morning, and she’s getting around pretty well. They want us to take 5-10 minute walks every hour-and-a-half, so that will pretty much define our day. We’re just taking it easy. We’ll drive back home tomorrow, stopping every 90-minutes to walk around and stretch. So it’ll take like four days to get to Midland.

Carrie-Anne is still super sore, and will be for about a week. She won’t make her first day of school, July 19 — we have a video follow up with her surgeon on Friday the 21st. But she might be ready to ease back in to work on Monday the 24th.

Thank you so much for your concerns and prayers and kind words and sweet gestures toward us over the past week or so. Yesterday’s surgery was the last big step in C-A’s treatment and healing. There will be follow-ups and check-ups and another procedure or two this fall related to the reconstruction. But, in the big scheme of things, we are now done. It’s over. My wife is cancer-free and we are overflowing with gratitude to our God and to all our dear friends and family scattered all over Texas and the Great Southwest and throughout the Lord’s eternal Kingdom.



With Family in Houston


Carrie-Anne and I have endured four appointments over two days at M.D. Anderson’s main hospital in Houston and the campus in Sugarland. C-A has been poked and prodded, we’ve had all the conversations and signed all the waivers, and we’re ready for her reconstruction surgery at 7a tomorrow. We are cancer-free and overflowing with gratitude. And we’re waking up at 4a in the morning to be at M.D. Anderson before 530a as the temporary expanders are coming out, and the permanent implants are going in. Finally!

The best part of our day today was spending a couple of hours with my sister Sharon and her husband Brent at Pappasito’s across from NRG Stadium. Brent was recently diagnosed with lymphoma – C-A’s last day of chemotherapy was Brent’s first day for his treatments – and they happen to be in H-Town tonight for some of their own appointments tomorrow. So we compared doctors and cussed and discussed the pros and cons of ports, caught up on our kids, and laughed and laughed and laughed.

Y’all lift up my precious wife to the Lord tonight. And say a prayer for Brent.



Those People

Chris and Liz Moore are two of those people. You know those people. Those people you’ve known and loved for a quarter century, who’ve been with you through some memorable highs and a couple of devastating lows, and who love you unconditionally. Those people who were part of your really tight group when the Lord was doing some eternal work on your soul. Those people who laugh with you until you’re crying and cry with you until you’re praying. Those people who stay late after your daughter’s wedding to help you clean up. Those people who know you well enough and think enough of you to lift your spirits when you need it and call you out when it’s necessary. Chris and Liz Moore are two of those people.

Chris and Liz were there when God was chasing Carrie-Anne and me in the early 2000s. When the Lord was calling us and shaping us, when God was speaking to us and revealing himself to us and opening our hearts to receive him and his holy will more fully into our lives, Chris and Liz were there. We worshiped and served with them at the Mesquite Church, we took road trips with them to Oklahoma for the Tulsa Workshop, we talked about the Church and prayed for our congregation, we camped out together in the rain, we played games until late into the night, we watched Super Bowls, argued about the Cowboys, and touted the merits of Van Halen and Ted Nugent versus Aerosmith and Boston.

Chris and Liz came out to see us in Midland this past weekend. We talked together and stayed up too late and laughed and laughed and laughed. We played miniature golf and 99. We ate wonderful food and caught each other up with all our mutual friends. We worshiped together at GCR and introduced them to all our new friends. And we were reminded that God blessed us beyond what we could have asked or imagined when he put the Moores into our lives in 1999. They are crazy fun, deeply reflective, partners in the Gospel, and our lifelong friends.


Carrie-Anne and I are in Houston preparing for her reconstruction surgery at M.D. Anderson. We just polished off a very enjoyable dinner at the P.F. Chang’s at Galleria Park and are settling into our Hampton Inn Suite. We have an oncology appointment tomorrow with her cancer surgeon, Dr. Refinetti; three appointments on Wednesday with her plastic surgeon, the anesthesiologist, and somebody else (I can’t remember); and then her surgery is scheduled for Thursday morning.

We’re almost finished. This week marks the end of a journey that began with Carrie-Anne’s diagnosis on October 28 and has been marked for nine months by our God’s continuous grace. We are blessed by our Lord and overflowing with gratitude and praise.


Some people have joked that C-A and I timed it perfectly to be away from Midland during VBS week at GCR.

It’s not funny. We love VBS and are absolutely sick to be missing it. We’re expecting more than 200 kids at our VBS Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evening. And if we’re not all present and pouring into these children and their families, we are missing our calling. And our mission. If you don’t normally help with VBS, I suggest you show up one of these nights, if for nothing else, to meet some parents who are dropping off or picking up their children, or to give a high five to a second-grader and tell her how awesome she is. You’ll be blessed. But that kid might be impacted eternally. You know how that worked in your own life. Why not give a little back this week? Especially since C-A and I can’t be there.



The Allison Team

Our hearts are full of gratitude for the thoughtful and considerate team of nurses and doctors at Texas Oncology / Allison Cancer Center here in Midland. These kind and warm professionals walked with us every step of the way during Carrie-Anne’s 16 chemotherapy treatments and took great care of us throughout the five months. Kirsten welcomed us to the infusion room on that very first Friday back in February and guided us through our first few treatments,  Lindsey took care of us on our very last day, Paula and Julie were calm and compassionate caregivers in the middle months, and Gian (not pictured; slacker) was the consistent model of efficiency, source of humor, and conversation partner.

After spending four hours every Friday with these great people for five months, we feel like we know them and we love them. We know the TV shows Julie’s kids watch and we know that Julie knows all the songs. We know about Lindsey’s husband’s job and their family back in Austin. We know about Gian’s upbringing in the Philippines, his faith journey, and his “maid.” We talked together about Aerosmith and church, hockey and the economy, Friends and M*A*S*H, the Cowboys and potty-training. We compared Lindsey’s precision infusion techniques to Gian’s more, shall we say, decisive(?) methods. And we prayed together.

There is much to be thankful for. Carrie-Anne is “cancer-free,” her side effects throughout the treatments were minimal and short-lived, she has hung on to about 80% of her hair, and her infusion port is coming out this Friday afternoon. We are thankful for our God’s incredible mercy to us over this phase of our cancer journey. We are grateful to our church family at GCR — for their prayers, cards, texts, calls, meals, visits, and love. And we thank the Lord for our friends at the Allison Cancer Center. They are doing really great work. And they do it in a way that reflects the glory of our God.



At the Cross

Here’s a good read about scalp-cooling for chemotherapy patients and a call for health insurance companies in the U.S. to begin covering the costs for cancer patients. We are blessed / fortunate to be able to afford the cold caps for Carrie-Anne. Not everybody is. And it matters.


I’ve heard most of my life that Jesus died so I don’t have to. I don’t think that’s right. I believe Jesus died to show me how to. How to embrace suffering and rejection, how to faithfully deal with pain, how to understand sacrifice and death as God’s method for saving the world. We see everything much more clearly when we look at the cross.

When you are suffering, it may not always be clear to you why you’re in pain. You may not know the reason you’re suffering. You may be in a terribly dark place of pain and suffering right now and it doesn’t make sense to you. You don’t know the reason or the point. Just like Jesus’ suffering didn’t make sense to his disciples, you can’t figure out why you’re in so much pain.

When you see Jesus on the cross, you can at least know what the reason for your suffering isn’t. When you see how Jesus died, you can at least know what are NOT the reasons for your suffering.

It’s not that God doesn’t love you. He does. Very much. Jesus hung on that cross in agony, but the Father’s love for his Son was not diminished or compromised one bit.

And it’s not that God doesn’t have a plan for you. It’s not that God has abandoned you. The cross actually shows us God’s presence in suffering. And that God is at work and doing marvelous things, eternally significant things, even in your suffering. Even in the middle of your pain and darkness. Even when your suffering doesn’t make sense.

God is present. And he loves you. And he is at work.



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