Three times we’ve received bad news. Each time there is a treatment that might get rid of the cancer, but each time the chance of it working is less. We are at that point again.

I wrote about some of the strange symptoms Peter was experiencing over the last few days: ringing in his ears, pain in his shoulder, pain in his feet. Yesterday I noticed the area around his eyes getting puffy. Today his whole face and his arms got swollen. He complained that something in his throat felt weird. The doctors decided to hold off on chemo to see what was going on. First they order an X-ray, then followed up with a CT scan. It’s not an infection. It’s cancer. The tumor has grown. Again. Already.

His airway at one point is constricted to 3mm. Some veins draining the blood from his head and arms are being squeezed, which is causing the swelling. They rushed him to start radiation this evening, the staff staying late to do it.

For the first time, Peter was feeling scared and worried today. For good reason. The only shot left is for three uncertain parts to all work perfectly in succession: radiation, chemotherapy targeting the specific mutation driving the growth of the tumor, and bone marrow transplant. The likelihood of getting rid of the disease, in the words of the oncologist, is “exceedingly small.”

Even if we can hit this triple bullseye, Peter can expect to face a lifetime of difficulty. Each piece has its difficulties and its complications, both short and long term. Radiation will most likely cause tremendous pain in his throat. It might be impossible for him to eat for a few weeks. His heart and lungs will also be damaged, as they will also be irradiated. Chemo causes long term side effects of varying types. And a bone marrow transplant will lead to many complications too.

So here we are grieving again for the third time. Each time the chance of healing is smaller. While talking with the oncologist today, I thought, “How much of this can I handle?” The oncologist said, by the way, that he is “kind of angry” because this tumor has not responded at all the way he expected it too. Personally, I just feel sad.

I am a little unsure how much of our struggle and sorrow to share in this kind of forum, but if you are reading it’s likely because you share in our sorrow in some way. We would like you to also share in our hope. We do of course have some hope that the treatments will be effective. That is possible. And we have hope that God might respond to the prayers of so many and heal Peter miraculously. But more than this we have the sure and certain hope of the resurrection. Peter, despite some understandable fear, shares that confidence. While asking for healing, we are preparing Peter for heaven.

Feel free to share this
On the Edge of a Cliff (for the third time)

16 thoughts on “On the Edge of a Cliff (for the third time)

  • April 1, 2017 at 2:48 am
    Permalink

    My heart goes out to you all. I can think of no greater pain. God bless you all and wrap Peter in Hin loving arms.

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 4:53 am
    Permalink

    Reading your post left me weeping, knowing there is hope in healing and /or the resurrection but knowing the pain of a parent seeing your child at this juncture. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability. We are praying often for Peter and asking God to put his arms around all of you. We love you.

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 7:27 am
    Permalink

    Praying for you Zeke. We are thinking of your family this morning. Love and comfort to you. I am so glad you have eternal hope.

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 7:59 am
    Permalink

    Praying for the stronghold of desease to be broken in Peter’s body, that in the name of Jesus who healed many and desired to heal even more as he physically walked this Earth, that in that Name the strong arm of the enemy is broken over Peter. That our loving Lord who receives glory in spite of your suffering, will receive glory in your joy and celebration of Peter’s healing. In Jesus’ name, may God give you all peace and comfort and hope in this unspeakable time of pain and suffering. Amen

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 8:05 am
    Permalink

    Zeke, Rebecca, and Peter,
    Your post made me cry, this is certainly not the update I wanted to hear! I saw that you had a message at the end of your post “Feel free to share”. I did share. My Aunt Mary Moses in Texas is praying for you, Peter, she wants God to miraculously remove this cancer. There are several others praying for you as well, Peter. I passed this update onto my church family, biological and extended family, as well as friends. I want you to know this and I hope knowing that so many are lifting requests on behalf helps in some small way. Zeke, I thank you for sharing at such a difficult time so our prayers can be specific. Rebecca, so sorry, I know this is so difficult. Much love and prayers to you all. May you feel “held” .

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 10:22 am
    Permalink

    Praying for you and your family, but especially Peter, like everyone I wish there was something more I could do, However I will continue to pray for all that God can give. Grover

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 2:44 pm
    Permalink

    We are standing with you and declaring Peter to be whole, healthy, healed and strong in Jesus name! We only give Jesus our awe, not cancer. The Bible says, since we are in Christ, we have that same power living in us, the power to call things unseen as seen. So, Peter, we speak to you now and call you healed! And, cancer, by the power of Jesus Christ that lives in us, we cancel your threat now, cast you out of Peter and we cast you out of the Nelson family lineage permanently. We declare that the side effects spoken by man are nullified now and that Peter will not only live, but live an abundant full life in Jesus name!

    Sending so much love to you!

    Love,

    Steve and Heather Colvin

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 5:05 pm
    Permalink

    As always, adding my hopes for the best to all the prayers being said by so many for your whole family.

    nikki nightengale

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 6:08 pm
    Permalink

    We are praying and loving your dear family and parents as you walk through this. Your neighborhood parents all love you very much.

    Reply
    • April 2, 2017 at 2:10 pm
      Permalink

      We are very grateful for the neighborhood community Mark. It means a lot to us. Thank you

      Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 9:35 pm
    Permalink

    We just finished praying for you and we will continue to do so. We love you all

    -Posey family

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 11:02 pm
    Permalink

    Much love to your entire family, and especially to Zeke, Rebecca and precious Peter. He is a very blessed boy to be loved so dearly. The “miracle” is Peter, always was, and always will be. Many prayers continue here, for healing and stamina for Peter and for the family.

    Reply
  • April 1, 2017 at 11:06 pm
    Permalink

    Yesterday, just learn of Peter’s cancer battle through your heart felt letter from Gateway CC. Thank you, Zeke, for your strength to share then and today (found your blog today). Began to to cry and beg our Lord Jesus to continue to work powerfully, mightily and graciously on Peter and the disease and the chemo side effects; and to infuse you and your family with more peace, strength, decrement and hope. I will be with and for you and Rebecca while on the “next cliff” with the hopes, fears and sorrows, and hoping and asking for what is possible
    I care. I am a soldier in God’s army willing to be on the front line of this difficult battle.
    Four years ago my 7 1/2 year old nephew, Luke, battled two brain tumors, two surgeries, two BMTs, chemo, radiation etc. with the peace, assurance and compassion of The Lord like YOUR Peter…the spirit of The Lord is upon him, truly, and also with you, dear ones.

    Reply
    • April 2, 2017 at 2:09 pm
      Permalink

      Thank you Mary for your faithful prayers

      Reply
  • April 2, 2017 at 2:03 pm
    Permalink

    Dear Lord
    You are the One paster zeke son turn to for help in moments of weakness and times of need. I ask you to be with your servant in this illness. Psalm 107:20 says that you send out your Word and heal. So then, please send your healing Word to your servant. In the name of Jesus, drive out all infirmity and sickness from his body.

    Dear Lord, I ask you this suffering into compassion, sorrow into joy, and pain into comfort for others. May your servant trust in your goodness and hope in your faithfulness, even in the middle of this suffering.
    may you,

    Lord, I pray for my peter just as your Word tells me to pray, for healing. I believe you hear this earnest prayer from my heart and that it is powerful because of your promise. I have faith in you, Lord, to heal him, but I also trust in the plan you have for his life.
    Lord, be glorified through his life.
    Amen

    Reply
    • April 2, 2017 at 2:08 pm
      Permalink

      Thank you for your precious and powerful prayer

      Reply

Leave a Reply