May 31, 2004

Hi everybody,


As much as I hate Chemotherapy, I have begun to see some humor in the whole process. “EVERYBODY HATES IT!” It’s not just ME! We all HATE everything about it! Ha! Ha! I’ve never ONCE heard one person say, “Man, I just love chemo!” So, we have a big, “I HATE Chemo Club!” But we are all sitting in a chair hours a day getting the stuff! We are wearing funny hats, bright colors and carrying teddy bears or other little fuzzy “comfort pals.”

Now the nurses and me are having a problem. We cannot seem to get the stuff to go into me. The trouble, something called a port, which is embedded in my chest (deep in my chest)!! Unless I am lying down in that chair I told you about it will NOT work. The minute I get up that machine with all those bags hanging on it starts to buzz and bing and chirp, all at the same time!! Ha! My nurse comes running and starts to reset all the buzzers and chirpers and bingers…. it’s a sight to behold! I’ve had to miss two sessions in a row because of all that noise! Ha!

Today they decided, after I’d spent hours in the CHAIR, that I needed a new port as mine was behaving so badly! So off to the hospital I go, shivering and shaking because they keep it so cold in those hospitals… I was scared to go back to a room I’d been twice before. The nurses are all saying, “Oh, it’s YOU again!! We are going to put your name on this room Tammy Faye!!” They tell me to get into a hospital gown and I still cannot figure out if you fasten it in front or in back, sooo I fasten it in front… figure I have more control over it that way! Ha ha!! Roe and I sit there patiently waiting “patient”, get it? Ha! I’m freezing and scared when the nurse finally says, “It’s time!” I won’t let them put me in that bed so I walk back with her to the scary room!!

The nurse lays me down on another bed and I see her getting lots of NEEDLES ready so the doctor can “stick them in ME!!” OUCH! The doctor comes in all scrubbed and gloved… he is now READY!! I was amazed when I said, “Aren’t you going to put me to sleep or something???” They said NO! The torture began! Now they say they are numbing the area (in this case, the soft saggy part of my left arm just above the elbow). I guess they did a little as I only felt the first needle mildly! The cut a hole in my arm which I THINK I felt, they stuck some hardware in my arm. They said it would be just pressure, UH HUH!! SURE! Then they started to sew me up which I KNOW I FELT!! This is not fun stuff. It’s at times like these that I try to visualize you praying for me.

Well… we are going to try it again tomorrow. I have now what is called a PICC. It hangs out and off my arm. I’m scared I’m going to accidentally “dislodge the thing”!! So tonight I invented a way to cover it. I took a nylon, cut off the feet and used part of the leg to cover my PICC. Nylons come in all colors so I can have pink, red, purple, blue or neutral!

WOW! Are we having fun yet? I don’t think so! Ha ha!

Seriously… I do need your continuing prayers! There are times I think I cannot take the chemo another day. There are times I PRAY until I cannot pray anymore and that is where YOU come in my dear friends. There are times I cry until I think I can’t cry anymore. (I don’t expect YOU to do THAT with me, ha!) And then as I wrote in the front of the letter, there are times of laughter. It all seems so “SURREAL”…. Recognize THAT word? Ha!

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May 31, 2004

I’ve always been so healthy, it’s very hard to know your body is sick. But I say to the old devil, “Not for long devil, YOU are a defeated foe! You DON’T win!”

One thing that makes me sad is the fact that I still cannot sing. I took out my tracks thinking I should at least try to practice singing for the meeting I was doing in Tulsa… the music came on… and I couldn’t! I stood there and cried like a little girl asking God, “WHY?” Just about that time my precious husband Roe came down the stairs, put his arms around me and said, “Don’t worry honey, you WILL sing again!” I believe that too because I know the man that made the vocal chords in the first place! And His name is Jesus and HE has NEVER failed me!

I spoke without singing for the first time in my ministry. It was a humbling experience! Not MY WILL BUT THINE BE DONE! It was a glorious meeting and Roe said I have never – ever preached better in my life!

Well…. I love you my friends. I don’t know WHAT I’d do without you. I am leaning heavily on you these days. Your encouragement and prayers mean more than you will ever know. I am so sorry that I cannot physically answer all of you but I do read all your emails and the cards you sent to me. I enjoy all the cute things you send me such as teddy bears, angels, vitamins, health products and someone is making me some slippers! So many of you have sent me flowers and books that I have so enjoyed! Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am so fortunate to have friends like you. I will always TREASURE you and I mean that with all my heart and soul. God bless you is my continual prayer!

  With love and hugs,

PS. Please pray that the PICC thing will work and, oh yes, a girl prayer, you gals can pray that my hair won’t fall out! That’s just if you should think of it and have time. Ha!







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