Monday, October 27, 2008

Back from Colorado!

Dear friends,

It is Thursday afternoon and I got back from Denver on Tuesday evening. I am sitting in the waiting room at Inland Imaging to have an ultrasound done of my left leg. I saw my oncologist yesterday, and he felt we should look at the swelling behind my left knee right above the initial clot location in that leg. Since I am on Coumadin, it is very unlikely to be another clot. My INR right now is 4.1. It is supposed to be between 2.0 and 3.0, so it is very high. This level indicates how long it takes for your blood to clot. Coumadin thins my blood to keep it from forming any more clots (DVT’s) in my legs. Apparently, even after my 2 clots dissolved, residue can remain on the walls of those blood vessels, making rough spots which can attract new clots to form. Taking Coumadin for these months gets rid of the clots as well as the residue. I won’t take any Coumadin tonight and then will resume my dose and go back for a check on my INR level next week. I learned that it only takes 3 days for Coumadin to get out of your system.

As I have mentioned recently, there has been a count of 25-50 of blood in my urine. There should be none. 3 weeks ago I had a CAT scan done of my bladder and kidneys looking for the cause, and it showed no tumors or stones. Since the oncologist found a 50 count of blood cells in my urine again yesterday, he is talking to my internist about me going to a urologist for further investigation. I have had some level of blood showing up in my urinalyses for years, so since it has increased, my doctors feel it is time to find out why it is happening. The Coumadin might make a difference, but not this much. I should be talking to my doctors this week.

Now it is Sunday evening. The ultrasound showed there is no baker’s cyst or vascular problem behind my left knee. They will call me about that this week too.

Colorado trip
I went on the 14th and came back on the 21st. I visited a lot of friends, attended a few meetings and I want to tell you about the program I did last Sunday morning at Cherry Hills Community Church in Highlands Ranch. On Saturday I went and set up for Sunday with Greg’s cousin, Keyley, for 1 ½-2 hours. We set up pictures with descriptions of Partners International projects on the walls all around the room. We also put up maps, posters and got all the supplies organized. I had very little to do on Sunday morning when I got there.

Well… you can probably expect a story is coming! On Sunday morning I learned that the class I was going to be with has 300 kids over the 2 hours. Last I had heard it was 150, and I usually had 60-70 per hour- max. So I had ½ hour to adjust my approach for the extra kids I would have. When I got upstairs to the room I walked in with a friend and the room was EMPTY! Through a miscommunication, the building staff guy took it all down that morning. The friend I was with prayed with me, an honest call to God for “HELP!” All my things were neatly piled on a table in the corner. We started to put it back together and as parents dropped off their kids, Shelby, Greg’s sister and my neice, Natalie, came, and everyone helped to put it all back on the walls. What a flurry of activity! I think we were done with about 10 seconds to spare! I will never forget that experience.

The lesson itself went extremely well. The lesson on Money and Missions was fun and educational. The kids seemed to really “get it.” They learned about international exchange rates, the need to pick what they are giving to strategically, and they learned how to figure out their tithe. Watching them “shop” for their projects was fun and hearing them share why they picked the ones they did was great as they had thoughtful reasons.

So after sharing about Partners International at the Outreach Leadership team meeting on Monday evening, I headed home on Tuesday. Greg and Jesse are hunting this weekend. I had 9 Ghanaian Whitworth U. students, the father of one of the students who is one of our PI partners, and 2 other families over for dinner last night. It was a nice time. Feeding college students is always satisfying, and it was nice to get to know Kofi Papa better. Today I took a long nap and talked to my mother for a nice visit. And now I am catching you up on these adventures.

I often meet people who tell me they read my blog. Thank you for doing that. I am humbled and blessed by your interest and prayers. I will let you know when I hear more from my doctor. God Bless you! Nancy Fritz

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