Wednesday, November 7, 2007
In the words of Han Solo: "Never Tell me the Odds!"
From Joan: As you can tell from the picture, the Ashton Clot is having another fun day at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. For those of you concerned that Dennis has been outed as a cross-dresser, we just wanted to reassure you that he is wearing the latest in Hospital chic, the GQ designer gowns.
Dennis is currently getting his "Tatts" or getting "inked". Apparently this is what the kids are doing these days, and we wanted to be up on the latest trends. I made a request that the dots, when connected, spell out "J-O-A-N" in bold letters. I didn't think this was an unreasonable request. However, the technicians did. As it stands now, if you try to connect the dots, your pen will get entangled in the chest hair. We hope if there's any hair loss with the "Radiation and a side of Chemo", it will come off his chest first.
Dennis and I want to express our gratitude and our love for the many messages of support, encouragement, and love. We are so grateful for the prayers that have been said on our behalf. We are overwhelmed. There are no words.
We are fighting the biggest battle of our lives. Thank you all for reinforcing our efforts. Every expression means so much to us, from the most eloquent words to the sweetest hand-drawn pictures from some of Dennis' patients. Three -year-old Ashton Ballou even offered to give Dennis a shot if he needed it. It does not get better than that.
By the way, the food that you have brought to our family has fed our souls. When Anne Crockatt asked what time we ate dinner, I panicked. So I just said, "Guess." As you know, dinner time at the Ashton household is nebulous at best. She guessed 5 o'clock, and I said, "You're right." Our whole family has loved the meals, and my daughters keep asking me if people really eat dinner like this every night. I said, "Of course not. This is just a special occasion." I didn't want them to know what they had been missing their whole lives. By the time Dennis goes to surgery, we plan to have him so beefy, the surgeons will think they're operating on Arnold Schwarznegger. We're just a few pounds short of our goal!
Pancreas Cancer is grim. We are bombarded with numbers and statistics. But I have learned a new word. That word is "ressectible." Mark Ott brought this concept to our attention. Mark also informed us about the "Whipple" procedure. And with these words, we have hope. When the odds were against us, the "Otts" were in our favor. For this, we will ever be grateful.
Please know how much you all mean to us and how vital your words of comfort and hope and love are. We may not be able to move the mountain, but you are helping us climb it.
Joan, Dennis and the Clot