Wendi took Cash this morning (with amazing help from Laura and Julie) to Children's for his 2 month MRI check up. The last MRI left us feeling pretty good with how things were progressing but our expectations for the MRI's are always mixed.
The news from today's MRI is not good. The main tumor has basically doubled in size and is protruding into other parts around the stem. In addition, there are numerous spots on his lower spine. The strangest part is that he still looks really good, with the exception of his right eye - over the past few days we've seen him struggle to open it fully and now that we've seen the scans we know why. There is a lot of extra fluid that is not flowing to the appropriate parts of his brain, putting pressure on different areas, one being the optic nerves.
We have decided not to pursue any further treatment as the low-dose chemo seems to have lost it's ability to affect change (positively). The hospital is connecting us with hospice care in the event that Cash will need assistance as the tumor continues to grow. There are a few experimental treatments we can try but there is no guarantee that they will even help and will most likely make him sicker so we're opting not to investigate them any further.
I don't think the news could get any worse, and then Joanne gave me a verse that was on her heart this morning - Psalm 91:11 - "For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways." We are deeply saddened by the MRI results and at the same time at peace. That peace we feel is from the Holy Spirit, which is referred to in the Bible as the Comforter (or Helper) (John16:7). We are thankful to God for a great year with Cash and will continue to hold out hope.
The amazing thing is that Cash is amazingly strong. Aside from being tired, with his hair growing back (and it's getting long) and talking/laughing/showing his teeth - you would not know he has a huge mass in is brain. He is a fighter and he is as courageous as his good friend Christopher, who fought the same battle.
We continue to ask for your prayers during this extremely difficult time and pray that God will keep Cash close to Him and as free from pain as possible. I think it would be too much to bear to see that little guy in pain and we're hoping his symptoms continue to stay relatively minor. Thank you for your prayers - our prayers tonight are not only for Cash, but Jensen and Charlie Middlebrook. Jensen's family received some difficult news this week and Charlie had a stroke a few days ago. May God grant them peace, strength, and healing.