Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Ground Zero

Cancer puts doubts and fears in your mind about whether the treatment is going to work or not. Today when I arrived I saw a chapel and wandered in to pray alone. A few minutes later people started arriving and I realized it was a Mass. Before the Mass was over I took communion and prayed that what ever the host touched that it would heal. Before the mass was over I felt no fear or doubts. I felt that God was going to take care of me. I feel even stronger and steadfast that I'm going to beat this. Also, what made me feel stronger was that as the chemo was entering my body we had groups of people praying. It's great that my daughter knows how to text and line prayer chains up.

Today I went through my first round of chemo therapy and it took 4 hours. I came home with a pump that will put chemo into my system for the next 48 hours. They put me in a small, single room with a bed, TV and a lounge chair. Before they chemo started they gave me a cocktail of drugs that helped with the nausea and potential allergic reactions. I spend the day praying and sleeping. So far I'm not experiencing nausea. Also, I'd like to thank my friend who was my personal chauffeur today. We were gone for a total of 14 hours today. Thanks for checking up on me and for all of the prayers!

Jesus said, "Don't be afraid, just believe." Mark 5:36


  1. Mark,
    As you go through this trying time, I want you to know that you too are touching peoples lives by your strong faith you are showing. All of us have you on many prayer lists and this only proves that prayer does work as seen in your updates..your courage, strength and everlasting trust that God is in control. You WILL overcome! I pray that you go through this with as little side effects as possible and that your story will be one of miracles!

    "come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." - Matthew 11:28

    All our love and support!

    Traci and Richard

  2. Mr. Mark,

    You dont know me, but I am Jerome daughter. Well Jeromes step-daughter. I see the heartbreak because my dad (Louis Potvin) faught a long battle with cancer that ended in victory even though he is gone. I dont understand all the emotions and rollercoaster heart ache but I do know my dad Jerome is in utter kaos of heart over you. He speaks of the battels to conquer fires that you and him fought as did your dad and Jeromes dad for our country in WW2. Jerome speaks little of the emergencies good and bad that you and him have been involved in but he offen speaks of the ties betweeen the Hidalgos, the Raios, the Vogels. Jerome doesnt handle grief very well but I know he loves you as his dad did Mr T.B. and he feels a closeness brother hood and bond with you that I cant explain. We are some of the perrifrial folks in this fight your in but it means so very much to us. Our heart goes out to you. Our love goes out to you, and our Prayers go up to the Lord Jesus with you and your family.


  3. Hello, Mark,

    Will be thinking about you and praying for you. I am glad you had an anti nausea cocktail. As old as I am, they did not have that when I took chemo and radiation.

    Eat all you can and then some. Suggestion, liquid ginger from the health food store put in a hot cup of tea works wonders with settling the stomach.

    Bible verse that helps - "By His stripes, we are healed."

    In His love,

    Cheryl Coney Arnold

  4. Tiffany did a good job lining up the prayers - all the way to the east coast.


  5. Uncle Mark,
    I just wanted to let you know that you are in our family's prayers and we are pulling for you all the way!!
    Also, as a heads up, make sure you 48 hour pump is actually pumping. A good friend of mine that I work with just had that problem a couple weeks ago. She has gotten so used to it and forgets it is even there, after the 48 hours were up and she was headed to get it off, she looked at the bag and it was still full. She had to wear it for two more days. My hopes for you are that you go through your chemo treatments as well as she has these past few months.
    With much love,

  6. Amber,
    It is true, our families go back 80 years. Jerome and I are continuing that tradition. When 2 people fight fires and respond to emergencies together it does create a bond and brotherhood between the individuals. Jerome and I are very close and I love him like a brother.