Thursday, February 7, 2008

Wonder Twin Powers Activate! To form: a Tsunami

(My Dad on Spa Day at the Hospital)

Good Morning Fellow Clotters,

Sorry for the Clot Blackout of late. Once again Mom has given the blog responsibility to the girls. We both apologize in advance for this.

It was all a matter of timing on Tuesday. We received the results of the pathology in the morning and Dr. Mulvihill couldn't discuss those results with the Clot until later in the afternoon. This gave way to other interpretations of the results, and a subsequent Clot meltdown of epic proportions. Mom was a rock, Dad was a rock, Erin and Brodi promptly combined their wonder twin powers to form a giant tsunami of tears that nearly wiped out the entire 5th floor of the Hospital. By the time Dr. Mulvihill came to our room, and informed us that we were still on track, that the results were not unexpected, and our plan of attack had not changed, Erin and Brodi were mere pools of gobby goo on the floor.

So Mom and Dad spent most of Tuesday and all of Wednesday cleaning up the mess Erin and I had left on the floor, and sorting out the pieces of which body part belonged to which girl, and we are back on track.

The pathology did not show as much necrosis (death of cancer cells) as we would have liked. But Dr. Mulvihill reminded us how we started this journey in the top ten percent of people with this disease, and of that 10 percent, many people still don't make it to the Whipple, which is the most important step to a cure. The pathology means that my Dad will most likely get another round of chemo to target any rogue cancer cells that may be touring his body. We're fighting the statistics, but we have been doing that from the beginning. We told Dr. Mulvihill that the Clot really excels when we are given 'underdog' status. (Hello New York Giants, anyone? McCain?)

Tuesday was a little bit of a dark day for us. Around 5:30 p.m., Erin said we should get in touch with the bishop, but none of us had his phone number with us. Immediately, my mom's cell phone rang, and of course it was Bishop O'Leary, who acted on a prompting to call us. Tender Mercy. An hour later, he was in my Dad's hospital room, with reinforcements he had picked up along the way. My Dad received the actual blessing, but the rest of the Clot felt the effects as well. The bishop advised us to put on the "full armor of God." Suffice it to say, the Clot has done just that. Including our brass knuckles.

And now we are ready for the next step in this battle, confident in the knowledge that we have already made it past the hardest part. Talmage Egan, and a few others, gave us a quote from President Hinckley:

"It isn't as bad as you sometimes think it is. It all works out. Don't worry. I say that to myself every morning. It will all work out. Put your trust in God, and move forward with faith and confidence in the future. The Lord will not forsake us. He will not forsake us. If we will put our trust in Him, if we will pray to Him, if we will live worthy of His blessings, He will hear our prayers."
(From the funeral program for Marjorie Pay Hinckley, April 10, 2004)

The Clot learned many valuable lessons this week. Most important, we will never again let the dark cloud of doubt and uncertainty creep in. Let me just say, Mom and Dad never did.

We appreciate the many expressions of love and support continually shown to our family. Please join us in putting on our armor, and gearing up for the fight. We are so ready!

Love to you all,
the Clot


Jeff Booth said...

Thanks Erin and Brodie. Know that we are with you and love you.
Your parents are amazing.
Thanks also for reminding me of President Hinckley's inspirational comments. It will all work out! Love Barb and Jeff

tomlarsen said...

Ashton Family,
Your in our daily prayers here in Texas. Hope you can "Feel the Love"from our family to yours.
See you this summer in Utah!!!
Love, Tom and Linda Larsen

Lisa Hawkins said...

2-7-08 Thanks for the update, were ready, willing and able to fight this right along with you guys. Are thoughts and prayers are with you, and are all amazing,and so very strong.
We love you, The Hawkins Clan

tnsmom said...

Though quiet on this front, we've been following and laughing, crying,and praying with you. As i think of what a gift to all of us your sharing this has been, I wish I had the hand to have recorded Cal's also. It's a wonderful faith builder to share your strengths and your admissions of "weakness" and your renewal of trusting the spirit. Thank you, and...
Dennis and Joan....does sorbet fit in his tube?
Cal and Tani Brubaker

Kate O said...

I spent all day tuesday checking the clot blog from the chairlift on my web phone. I did dedicate some deep soft utah powder turns to you Dennis and these have amazing healing and restorative powers (don't ask Dr Mulvahill about that statement). I know that this is just another bump in the road but am hoping it will smooth out for you all very soon. I am looking forward to a healthy Dennis. We are keeping your chair warm at Willowcreek. Lots of love, Kate O

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the update! I am glad to hear it was what the doc expected even though it isn't exactly what you wanted to hear. Remember: WHEN THE GOING GETS TOUGH, THE TOUGH GET GOING!! I think you all need the spa and I'd be happy to send the massage therapist! Love you all and hang in there you are all awesome. Chris C

Kris said...

We are so glad for the update. I think you all make the brass knuckles and armor look good! Love you all.
Krissie, Jake and Deanna

Jane said...

There hasn't been a single deterrent yet in the Clot's perserverance, determination AND SUCCESS!!! This is just one of those little bumps in the road, a mere speedbump on Wallace Lane compared with all you have conquered heretofore. Now I've never run a marathon (nor do I ever plan to do so!), but I understand there's a point close to the end where you feel you are going to succumb to exhaustion, but no one quits at this point! It just propels you to become more determined than ever to keep going. And you (and all of us really) have shown this same attitude for 100+ days now! As Pres. Hinckley said, "it will all work out." Our faith & prayers are intact, and I found the brass knuckles Mike had when he was a teenager, so we're prepared for the fight! We love you...Tom & Jane

Anonymous said...

this our first blog ever! we sat next to dennis and joan at utah basketball games...joan and kimberly gabbing...while dave and dennis were cheering our fearless utes on.
we immediately made dennis our number one pediatrician. we are always so impressed with how tender he is with newborns as well as the cranky older children!
we have been in with our 4 children over the past 3 months...from concussions to major depression...and finally had the NERVE to ask why it was taking so long to see our favorite doc(thinking maybe he had routine back surgery or some such thing)!
we were cheerfully informed with the reader's digest version by our next favorite doc, o'mara. We have added the clan to our prayers (and thoughts) and wish only the best for everyone
we love you and can't wait to see you back at work (not that we are wishing illness upon our children!)but life happens and we want you to be part of it.
love dave and kimberly sessions

Marge said...

We love you and pray for you always. Bob and Marge

Paul said...

Hello All,

"ukyhkap"......that's the word that needed to be typed in order to post a blog on "The Clot" today.

The reason for the mention is that it sounds a lot how Ash might have felt right after the last treatment.... I can see it now...

"How goes it, Dr. Asthon?"

"If you must know, I feel like ukyhkap!"

I've tried to read the other comments sent your way from time to time.... and it's universal-- we all love and pray for you.

Much mention has been made about Dennis' uncommon courage and tenacity....all assuredly deserved, but may it also be observed that the "Internal Clot," namely Joan and the girls, is equally remarkable.

To see, hear and read how you have rallied around "Your Man" is to be not only inspired, but also to experience an overwhelming sense of joy and reaffirmation in the realization that very the essence of all we hold dear is being lovingly personified through you equally courageous women!

As we look around mankind, it sometimes seems questionable whether any of our spoken values actually take root. In your case, they not only have done that, but they stand full-grown as a mighty evergreen with beautiful symmetry.

In spite of all the trauma, this remarkable reality is now made more visible to the rest of us.... to our blessing and deeper commitment.

Love you all,

Pablo, Duke of Ort

Anonymous said...

Erin and Brodie, Dennis and Joan, we too have on our armor and are geared up to fight along with you. For me, that means I have on my sunhat & hiking boots, and for Jim, why of course, his tool belt! And we're ready to join the Easter parade of the hangee thingee athletes. I think the hangee thingees should be decorated appropriately. We are with you. Love, Diane and Jim Topping