Before I get going, I’d like to thank everyone for all the prayers, support, and love that have come our way. Through FaceBook and Twitter we’ve received more kind and caring messages than we ever could have imagined. That’s why I’m using this post to talk more about our lives than about writing—although that will pop up as well. You’d be amazed just how much all that support does to keep our spirits up, and we both thank you!
As far as how things are going, I’m writing this as we sit in Round 4 of his chemotherapy. Round 1 sent him back to the hospital. His white blood cells crashed, leaving him neutropenic, which means he couldn’t fight off even the most minor virus or bacteria. So after a few days of isolation—and after his red blood cells also crashed, eventually requiring four units of blood—Jeff began to improve. We ended up staying (and I do mean “we” since I sleep on the lovely and absolutely uncomfortable couch in his hospital room whenever he’s admitted) in St. Francis for eight days. That put us behind schedule for Round 2, but he needed time to get his strength back.
Round 2 came three weeks later. Once again, things went bad pretty damned quick. Precautions were taken to boost his white and red blood cells, but he began to bleed from his colon. After two units of blood, the doctor admitted him again. Jeff was given a colonoscopy the next day that showed he’d developed some nasty colon ulcers and that his Crohn’s disease had gone active. The ulcers were cauterized, and he was put on steroids for the Crohn’s. (I could write a whole other post about Jeff on steroids, but I’ll spare you the details. For now.) After four days, six total units of blood, and a very uncooperative patient, I was finally able to take him home.
Round 3 was mercifully quiet—so quiet that when we hit the night before today’s round, we did EVERYTHING the same. Ate at the same restaurant. Drove the same route to the hospital. I even dressed him in the same T-shirt. (Why, yes, I DO have major superstitions! Thank you for asking!) So now, I sit here writing this while he plays Words with Friends on my Kindle (and he’d love more games, so feel free to send an invite to my Facebook persona) and lets more poison/medicine drip into his veins. His blood work was decent, and I’m in hopes Round 4 goes as well as Round 3.
I have a lot of people ask how I can write through all this. My first response is that I don’t. Except I really do. Not nearly as much as when things are normal—that term being relative in my life—but I am churning out chapters. I also have a very busy few weeks! Yesterday, my Safe Havens Bundle released, and I’m thrilled to say it’s ranked in the top 100 on Barnes & Noble and has reached the top 100 in three different Amazon categories! (Yay!!!) Next Tuesday, my sci fi romance, The Seeker, debuts in a wonderful bundle of eight sci fi stories called Sing a Song of the Stars. And then the fourth Ladies Who Lunch book is out on April 21st—Fringe Benefits.
Writing for me is comfort. Solace. And despite the hardships of helping Jeff through chemotherapy, I have to write. My current WIP is tentatively called Hideaway, and it will be the fourth book in the Safe Havens historical series. Not putting out a chapter every other day as I’m capable of doing, but I’m making progress. Slow progress. Which is very satisfying.
Thanks again for all the prayers and support! We couldn’t get through this without our wonderful family, friends, and all of you who have been there every step of the way. I ask you continue to keep Jeff in your prayers.
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Fringe Benefits (Ladies Who Lunch Book 4)
HOT FOR TEACHER!
When life gets tough and love is hard to find, four friends take their troubles to lunch. High school teacher Danielle Bradshaw deserves a happily ever after, and the Ladies Who Lunch are determined to deliver Mr. Right.