Blue Sky

the hunts in prague

19 July: This is happening.


Today was Port Day.

We were afraid it wouldn’t happen. The fever I mentioned yesterday spiked again overnight. But M texted several friends, they prayed, the fever responded to ibuprofen, and all went as planned. Now Eliza has a fabulous new accessory. Need to give her some IV fluids? Put that needle away! To the port! What’s that? You need to draw some blood? Noooo problem! Port! Amazing.

She's not too sick for chocolate, I'll tell you that right now.

She’s not too sick for chocolate, I’ll tell you that right now.

Then we had the long conversation we’d been dreading: potential side effects, and how to care for a baby undergoing chemotherapy. For the next few months, E can’t go anywhere where people gather in large groups. So, church.

I think E’s missed one or two Sundays at church in her (thus far short) life. I’m super busy after worship, setting up meetings, saying hello to people, helping tear down, and one of my favorite things is to look up every few minutes and see Eliza with somebody new: Janka. Rachel. Christina. Laura. So many people who love her. That won’t be part of her life for a while.

That’s just one little thing, but it struck a nerve. Our family won’t be all together at church for several months. We’ll also have to watch her temperature carefully. If she gets a cold it’s a big deal. There are meds to help with vomiting and nausea, but hearing loss is a concern. And this is all for a drug that’s “usually very well tolerated.”

We knew all this was coming, but it definitely feels more real today. And Eliza was feeling pretty puny and clingy, which was hard to see. At the same time, we feel so confident that God is with us. It’s hard to explain, except that he is good and he gives us the grace we need for each day. I thought today of this verse:

His oath, his covenant, his blood
Support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my hope and stay.

This flood is overwhelming, but Jesus is supporting us. By sending his Spirit to give us faith, by moving his people to pray and serve us, by giving Eliza kind and competent doctors and nurses.

The second half of the day was more life-giving. Melissa had a great dinner and visit with Betsy and Jessica. The boys and I watched a movie and ate jambalaya Junior brought yesterday. After they went to bed Andrej and Laura, a couple I married 2 weeks ago, came over for Laura to cut my hair. (She’s a professional.) And all the time we were getting texts and emails from people in Prague and in the States brainstorming ways to help. We are so loved it’s almost embarrassing.

So today was Port Day, and tomorrow is Round 1 of chemo. It’ll be a 7-hour drip through the day, followed by 24 hours of IV fluids and close watching. Then we hope she’ll be home Monday to recover until the next round, 2 weeks from now.

It’s time to start praying mostly for Eliza’s perseverance through chemo. Here are details.

  • Pray for nausea and vomiting to be minimal, and for E to respond well to the drugs they give for that.
  • Pray for her kidneys to hold up and function properly.
  • Pray for her white blood cell count to stay high, and her immune system to be strong.
  • Pray for no hearing loss.
  • Pray that all 5 of us will be healthy and that E won’t pick up any infections from outside.
  • Pray for protection from falls or bumps (ahem, brothers) or anything that could injure her abdomen.

Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. 

(Psalm 103:2-5)

14 thoughts on “19 July: This is happening.

  1. Jake and Melissa, Remember that Eliza was “fearfully and wonderfully made” and just as God knows every detail of her body He knows exactly what she will need. I am praying for your family life to be sweet and harmonious in the midst of this struggle so that you can praise God for his provision in every detail!

  2. Lots of prayers for this precious little girl and for you and your family! May God give you strength, joy, mercy and peace but more than anything I’m praying for complete and total healing for Eliza!

  3. We are praying for you guys and Eliza every day! Sending you hugs!

    Andy and Nicole

  4. Love you all sooo much!!

  5. Jake,

    Thanks for sharing your experience with us through this means.

    Our church staff and membership in Stanley are praying with you.

    And thanks especially, Jake, for the consummate pastoring you are accomplishing, ministering to so many others, even as you grapple with a deeply personal trial.

    All Blessings.

    Dan KIng

  6. God bless you all… and remember, there can be POSITIVE side effects to chemo. When Grandmary had it more than 20 years ago, it changed her body chemistry permanently…. such that this lady who had allergies all her life…. HAD NO MORE HAY FEVER!! GAFFER

  7. We are praying for your family and that precious baby girl. Lots of love from Georgia for you all. Hugs, Nick, Merri, Sophie, Luke, and Nolan Thomas

  8. We love you all and are all praying for healing, for strength, and peace as you cast your cares on Him.

  9. Continuing to pray for treatment to go as planned with manageable side effects. Praying for the entire family- big brothers, mom, and dad too! Giving thanks for your support system in Prague and for those around the world wh are lifting you in prayer. Live in Christ, Janie, Tommy, and T. Carmichael, Jackson, GA

  10. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way!


  11. Our thoughts are with you each and everyday. Sending love and prayers your way. Jeff, Sandy, Bryan and Annie

  12. Jake, Eliza was in our thoughts, as well as all the family, at the Trinity Men’s Prayer Breakfast this morning. Blessings, “Bud”

  13. Hello there! Greetings from Singapore!
    My name is Joanne and I am led here through Arianna’s Facebook postings.

    I am a mother of a child who is battling with two incurable diseases. No matter how tough it is, just remember that God is in control. Eliza will be completely healed in Jesus’ name!

    God bless you and your family. I will be praying for little Eliza. Take care.


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