Thursday, October 6, 2011

D&C 112:10

Frequently when we were kids we would go exploring caves with candles as our only light source. I don't know if we did it because we thought it would be cool or because we didn't own a flashlight. Either is possible. Anyway, candles don't illuminate very far. Mostly you can just see what is immediately around you and a little more. I guess that is how I feel about my life right now. It seems that God illuminates my path just far enough to keep me from tripping but not far enough for me to see the whole path. I would really like to know if there is a bear or a drop off ahead but I just can't see that far. Maybe he does it for my sake, knowing that it is better for me to only have to look a little ways and not become overwhelmed with challenges yet to be faced. Like it or not, I am learning about living by faith. I am grateful that in the small illuminated area I continue to see God's hand quietly leading us along.

Last night we arrived at our hotel at 2:30 in the morning. We had an appointment at 6:30 am at Mayo clinic. Not a lot of time to sleep. Because of a sweet Stake President from years ago JoLynne and I always read our scriptures before going to bed, even if it is just a few verses. (Thank you President Cole). Last night we were exhausted, so I just randomly opened the scriptures on my iPhone and it opened to D&C 112:10. It says, "Be thou humble; and the Lord thy God shall lead thee by the hand, and give thee answer to thy prayers" We both lay in bed and cried.

This morning we got registered at the hospital then had more blood drawn. (My arms are beginning to look like I may have a substance abuse problem.) We then met with an oncologist. She was very nice and when we talked about why we were traveling for treatment she said "That is a no brainer. When you have a cancer this rare you need to be in a large facility" We next met with a Dr Arce. He is a dentist/oral maxillofacial surgeon/MD who completed a fellowship in oncology. He was very helpful. I felt like he was looking at me as a whole patient, not just at my tumor. We talked a lot about reconstruction and what would last the longest so that I wouldn't have to go through surgery again in that area. He felt that the best way to rebuild my jaw was to use one of my leg bones, the fibula. I told him that I loved to run and he said that they could remove just the middle part of it and that, with time and patience, I would be able to run again. Apparently, the fibula must not be crucial to walking and running. Near the end of the appointment his head resident surgeon came in and introduced himself. He is from Utah and plans to return there this next year. That brought us a lot of comfort to know that one of the surgeons who operated on me would be moving back to Utah and would be able to take care of me if I have post surgical complications. When we got back to our apartment we had several calls from other surgical friends who helped us to lay some of our other fears to rest. We feel like little by little, things are falling into place.

Tomorrow they will be doing an MRI to map out my nerves and vessels in the surgical area. As the surgeon said "that little spot has a lot of real estate on it" Then more blood work (of course). We are scheduled for a biopsy on Tuesday but we are going to try and get in tomorrow if someone cancels. If not, were sure that things will work out as they should. It has been a good day. We are hopeful.

I wish I could just skip to the end and read the "happily ever after" part but I guess I will have to be content with my candle for now.


  1. I'm slightly concerned that you won't be able to stop talking during your next marathon. :)

    Thanks for the update!

  2. Dr. Vogel,

    Thanks for sharing and keeping us up to date on your progression. Thanks for your faith, testimony and insights. You are in our prayers.

    God Speed!

  3. Glad to hear that things are moving right along... that is a good thing! I hope all goes well at the Mayo Clinic and that they are treating you well! Big Hugs to you and JoLynne from me, Scott and William.