Radiation Machine...the arm.
Grandpa and Easton
Jordan here. I guess it is my turn to update the blog. It has been a while and we have been getting a few concerned calls about Dad :) I am back in Texas which has been really good, but very difficult at the same time. I loved being able to be a "secret spy" and to take care of my dad. It was really good for me to see him get better every day and to even start his treatments. I felt like I could go back to Texas and feel like dad was going to be okay. Which he is!
Before I left I was able to go with him to one of his radiation treatments. I have to say I am SO grateful we live in the world that we do. The medical advances that we have are AMAZING!! (And I am not just saying that because I am married to a doctor:)) We went up to the University of Utah facility in Daybreak. It is a brand-new, beautiful, state of the art building...and 5 minutes from my parent's house. As soon as we walked in they led my dad straight to the room with the GIANT machine. My mom had explained the "arm" to us, but I didn't realize how big it really is. It is huge. Dad lays on the bed and they put his sweet nacho libre mask on him. It snaps to the bottom of the bed and is really tight so that his head won't move. (When he came out his face had marks all over it from how tight the mask was.) We joke with him the he can't gain weight or else the mask won't fit him anymore. After they snap him to the bed, 2 laser beams come out of the wall and line up and make an "X" on the marks they made on his mask. That way they are ALWAYS radiating the same spot. Once "X marks the spot" they start the treatment. The bed and the arm are sitting on a disk on the floor and those are the only two things that move. I wasn't able to be in the room while they were doing it, but my dad said that he moved 5 times. Once they start it only takes about 5 minutes to do it. So nice and like the doctor said, radiation should only be an inconvenience.
While I was in the waiting room I was able think about all the reasons why I am so grateful for the medical advances we have today. First, for the chemo pill. If my dad had gotten this cancer 7 years ago, he wouldn't have been able to take a pill and probably wouldn't have even survived the chemo treatments. Now he takes a pill every night...followed by a family "kill the cancer" chant...and sleeps through most of the side effects. Second, for the radiation machine, or as Clint told me that it is known as XRT. What an amazing invention. It can give my dad the radiation he needs, kill the cancer cells, but do very little harm to the surrounding tissue that is healthy. Third, I am so grateful for all the doctors and nurses that are taking care of my dad. Having a doctor as a husband, and seeing how much he cares for his patients, and how worried he gets when he doesn't know how to help someone, makes me realize that Dr. Coleman, Dr. Reichman, Dr. Gaufin, Dr. Anker, Dr. Shreve, Debbie, Jane, Jill and Sean are ALL worrying about dad and just as anxious as we are to have all these treatments be successful. I am so grateful that they sacrifice their time away from their own families to help out mine. I am so grateful that they worked hard in school and residency so that they could be the best. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father led them to where they are so that they could help treat my dad.
I also wanted everyone to know that my dad is doing great. He still isn't feeling any side effects yet and continues to recover and get stronger every day. The side effects won't come until another week or so...if he feels any. But as of right now he is doing AMAZING. He truly is an IronMan...and an IronDad!!