Friday, August 31, 2007

Doing great!

Thanks to my wonderful mother-in-law, I was able to run up to the hospital and see Steph. It was so nice to be able to hug her neck! She is doing really well, just tired. She was up yesterday and took a walk around the "block." She and Scot told me about what they actually took out during surgery. They took about 1/3 of her large intestine and a small section of her small intestine then took all of the lymphnodes around that area. They will be doing some testing on that tissue and we should know more today about what kind of treatment we are looking at. She seems to be in very good spirits. My personal favorite was when her machines started beeping and flashing "code 24" (meaning it was unplugged) she picked up her call button to tell the nurse. Rather than just say "My machine is beeping" like a normal person she said (while holding the call button like a CB radio and using her best trucker voice) "Yes, we have a code 24...we have a code 24." I love it! I am also going to have to address the fact that she is a cheater. Steph, my Dad, Brian, my mom and I were all having a little contest before all this started. We were trying to eat healthy and loose a few pounds. Well, I don't think she should get to count the 5 pounds in organs she lost on Wednesday. I mean come on Steph, there are better ways to loose weight. So anyway, I am trying desperately to keep up with e-mails so if I don't e-mail you back right away please don't feel bad. It's only because I'm e-mailing the really important people first. JOKING! I am just getting A TON of e-mails but they are all so wonderful so keep 'em coming!

I did just find out today that Steph is not allowed to have ANY fast food. They said that if she were to get Ecoli it would be fatal. So I guess the raw meat pancakes I made are out of the question. I guess I will just put them in Claire and Drew's lunch. More later! God Bless!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

I spoke with my mom earlier and she told me that this morning Steph was up sitting in a chair. Does this suprise me? Not one bit! I am still working on getting a little more information about the surgery but it's hard to work in a complete conversation right now with anyone. Plus I haven't been able to go see her yet b/c Brian is out of town and I won't be taking my hooligans up there! I did want to let everyone know that we spoke with the people at Meal Makers here in town and they have decided to donate 10% of all sales for the Phillips family back to the Stephanie Phillips Foundation! Talk about a win win situation! Just mention the Stephanie Phillips Foundation when you order! Here is the website again THANKS MEAL MAKERS!!!
I don't have any news yet on how Steph's night went. So far today our biggest challenge was to get Drew to school. We decided that he will be going back to his old school with Claire. However, today he said "Claire, I'm really sorry but I have changed my mind. I won't be staying at school today." I'm not kidding, that is exactly what he said. If you know Drew, you know that he is 3 going on 73. So he took the lunch I packed him and said he would go to Cheryl and Bubby's today but he might try again on Tuesday! I am so very thankful for the girls at Claire and Drew's school. They are all so amazing and didn't even hesitate to take Drew even though there is a waiting list. And the icing on the cake.....they are doing it at no charge. It is such a great feeling to know that our children are with such a wonderful and caring group of people 2 mornings a week. Obviously I can't name the preschool but you know who you are!!!! We love you all and can't imagine that there is a better preschool on the planet! Thank you so much.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


We just heard from the surgeon. He said they got all of the masses out and didn't have to take her kidney! He said numerous times that he was "Shocked" at how easily all of the masses came out. GOD HEARD OUR PRAYERS! They also put in a port so that she can start chemo in 3 to 4 weeks. That's all I know at the moment. We are all so excited about the news we received today and I feel this sets the tone for a VICTORY!! We won this it's time to win the war! Keep praying and I will post new info as soon as I get it.

wow....just wow.

So I sat down last night and started printing off e-mails of people who want to help with meals. I was overcome with emotion. They may never have to cook another meal until Drew is old enough to drive and pick up dinner from China Wok! It is truly amazing! I am thinking about putting 2 people per week on the schedule. This way they won't have company every single night. I know Steph would love to visit with everyone but I assume she will need to rest also. I just wanted to let everyone know that I am working on a schedule and don't feel bad if you aren't scheduled to cook until December! I will continue to add people to the list so contact me if you still want to help!

Please pray today for Dr. Chris Edwards who is doing Steph's surgery (as I type this!). Pray for him to have the wisdom and ability he needs to make this surgery a success. Thank you all so much!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

From Stephanie

Steph sent this to me tonight and wanted me to put it up for everyone to read. I have never been more proud to call someone a pseudo-sister in my life.

I just want to take this opportunity on the night before I have surgery to thank you all. Thank you for all of your thoughts, prayers, phone calls and e-mails. I experienced a similar feeling to this when Drew was born with heart problems, but this time it’s different…this time it’s me. I can’t even begin to explain to you how powerful your prayers have been. He has heard every prayer that you have lifted up to him. I have never felt such an intimate relationship with God. This time, unlike with Drew, I’ve been able to let go and allow Him to take control. My faith has led me to let go and trust in the Almighty and I’ve been listening to him very carefully. I truly believe that there is no valley too dark for God’s sight, no place too low for the touch of His hand, no whisper too faint for the Good Shepherd’s ear, and no sickness that He cannot heal. It’s the most real feeling in the world, the most wholesome and the most peaceful. “Because the Lord is my Shepherd, I have everything I need!” (Psalm 23:1) For the first time in my life, I know that He is watching over me every minute of every day. He’s holding me in the palm of his hand and carrying me through what should be a difficult time. I am not afraid. I am strong and I am confident. I believe that the decisions that we’ve made up to this point are the right ones and that God will guide us through the decisions we have to make in the future. Please continue to pray for us as this isn’t easy on our family or our friends. We have many challenges and decisions that lie ahead of us. This is just the beginning of a long journey.
I also want to thank everyone that has been so helpful to us. Mom for taking such good care of Levi and picking up formula, diapers, food, etc. Kenneth and Cheryl for spoiling Drew rotten (he doesn’t even want to stay with me anymore), Chrissy and Jarad for setting up this Blog and the website with the Foundation. Marty and Trish for coming over and talking and for sharing your book. John and Robbie for mowing our yard and bringing us baked goods. Dad and Pam for the laptop so I can keep up with the Blog while I’m in the hospital and at home. And everyone else that has done anything to make our lives easier. I’ve only mentioned a few above, but we have been completely overwhelmed with kindness.
I’ll say goodnight and thank you again as I leave you with this poem. It’s been one of my favorites since I was a kid. I know the Lord is carrying me right now, I can feel Him.
Footprints in the Sand
One night a man had a dream. He dreamed he was walking along the beach with the LORD.
Across the sky flashed scenes from his life. For each scene he noticed two sets of footprints in the sand: one belonging to him, and the other to the LORD.
When the last scene of his life flashed before him, he looked back at the footprints in the sand.
He noticed that many times along the path of his life there was only one set of footprints.
He also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in his life.
This really bothered him and he questioned the LORD about it:
"LORD, you said that once I decided to follow you, you'd walk with me all the way. But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints. I don't understand why when I needed you most you would leave me." The LORD replied:
"My son, my precious child, I love you and I would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you."


Steph and Scot had a good meeting with the surgeon today. She is scheduled for surgery at 11:30 tomorrow. They say it will be about a 2 hour surgery to remove all three masses. It is not known if the mass next to her kidney is attached or not. If it is, they will have to take the whole kidney which would take longer. She will be in the hospital for 4 to 5 days depending on what they find when they get in there. Tonight I will be starting a calendar for people who want to take meals to their house. If you are interested and haven't already done so you can e-mail me at I will most likely be corresponding via e-mail because it is rare that I get to have a complete conversation with anyone between the hours of 8am and 9pm! We are all just overwhelmed at the response we are getting with people who are so willing to help out. It is a joy to bring up my e-mail and have 40 new e-mails all with the name "Stephanie" in the subject line!!! Tomorrow we will be meeting at 8:30 with Pastor Scott Watson and some members of the church for prayer before Steph goes to the hospital. If you have a few minutes between 8:30 and 9:00 send up a few prayers for a successful surgery and a speedy recovery. Again, we can't even begin to thank everyone for your kind words and prayers.

Monday, August 27, 2007

I had an Idea

Yes, I do get a few good ones every now and then. So many people are asking about how they can help. Steph is not one to ask for specifics (and neither am I for that matter) but I feel like it's my job right now to delegate. If you are like me you have had the thought of preparing a meal and taking it to them. Then you find yourself thinking..."What would they like?" "How long will it keep?" "How many lasagnas have they already gotten?" "Will I give them food poisoning?" Well, that last one may be just me but you get what I'm saying here. There is a wonderful place by the name of Meal Makers and I use them on a regular basis. They prepare the food and freeze it for you. All you do is order what you want and then pick it up when it's ready. They include directions for cooking and side suggestions. Steph got me a gift certificate when I was pregnant with my 2nd and now we are hooked. I thought this may be an option for some of you "domestically challenged" folks who want to help with meals! Just a thought, take it or leave it! Check out their website

Just another Manic Monday

Sorry for the lame-O title, but I couldn't resist. I realized recently, we are in this for the long haul and now you all must endure my dorky sense of humor because it's one of the things that gets me through the day! Today Steph had to take Levi to the doctor because Drew has diagnosed him with an "Ear Confection." I hope it's chocolate. He stayed with his Papa JL and Ohma last night and did fine but we just want to make sure we get that taken care of before her surgery. The boys are sooo lucky to have FOUR sets of WONDERFUL grandparents that are so willing to help as well as aunts and uncles and cousins too!

The whole family got together last night to talk about questions that everyone has. Steph and Scot made a list and will be addressing ALL of these issues when they meet with the surgeon tomorrow morning. It will be nice to have more answers about everything that is going on.

Saturday, August 25, 2007


The Doc wants to do surgery this week. He promised Steph that it would be before Wednesday. We don't know any specifics yet as far as what time and what exactly they will do but Steph and Scot are meeting with the surgeon on Tuesday morning to discuss it. We THINK they may try to remove all 3 masses. We just don't know for sure at this point. All I know is they have to do something because she has been in a lot of pain and I just hate it for her! Please keep praying!

Friday, August 24, 2007

August 24 10 am

Steph spoke with the surgeon this morning and we got more info. He will be calling a colon specialist and will most likely do surgery next week before they start chemo. He said he believes the cancer is at a stage 3. If they find that it is in the adrenal glands then it would be a stage 4. We are looking at a 60-70% cure rate. That's what I know at this moment!

Steph told my mom the other night that she has a sense of peace about this whole thing. She knows that God is taking care of this and we all feel God working. He knows that Steph is a fighter. He knows that she is the person for this job. She comes in contact with so many people and my Aunt Karen said it best when she said, "Someone in her life needs to see a miracle." God is using her to show people how AWESOME he truly is. Just keep praying. I can't even begin to guess how many people are praying. I do know that he hears us.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


The colonoscopy revealed a tumor in Steph's colon the size of a baseball. They have declared this "colon cancer" which was almost a relief to us (as odd as that may sound) because now we at least know what we are dealing with. We will know more on Monday about treatment and things of that nature. Steph said she thinks they will be doing surgery and chemo she just doesn't know in what order. She was supposed to go in on Monday and have a port put in so that she can start chemo next week but we don't know if they will want to do surgery first. Thank you to everyone who is praying. We know God is working here...we just know it. Feel free to post comments on this blog. Steph will be reading it and I know it means so much to her to have so many wonderful people who care about her and her family!

August 23, 2007

We did finally get a piece of good news. Steph got the results of her chest scan and it was clear! She is having her colonoscopy right now so we are all anxious to get the results. Here are two of Stephs biggest reasons for keeping the faith!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

background info

In July Steph went to the Dr. to see about a knot she felt in her abdomen. She was told it was nothing and she need to take fiber and stuff to get things moving. That didn't work and she ended up seeing a Dr. at the walk-in clinic. He told her that the only other thing they could do was to get a CT scan. When she went last week for that, they came out and told her to go straight to her Dr. Long story short, she ended up at her OBGYN's office because she wasn't getting answers anywhere else. He referred her on to a surgeon who then told her on Thursday that she has cancer. They found 2 masses. One is wrapped around her bowel and the other is sitting up against her kidney.

August 22, 2007

Steph talked the surgeon she is dealing with last night. They got the results of the biopsy and it is not lymphoma like we had originally thought. He said it is adenocarcinoma. What he doesn't know is where it started. We need to find that out ASAP. So today she is having a chest x-ray and tomorrow she will have a colonoscopy. Thanks to Dr. Good we were able to get an appointment for that right away. So there is the technical stuff.

Here are my thoughts for what they are worth! I've said before, and I will say it again....SHE WILL BEAT THIS. We all know that winning is what she does best! (She will probably be embarrassed that I keep saying that, but it's the truth.) God has been preparing us for this battle and I know in my heart it is a battle we will win. There is a verse in the Bible that keeps me going these days.
-Then he said to him, Rise and go; your faith has made you well." Luke 17:19.