Monday, May 22, 2006

May 21, 2006 - Back in the Pulpit

Today, at each of our two worship services, I preach a sermon – my first in many weeks. At some future date, I may preach about my experiences as a cancer survivor, but today it seems more important to me to simply preach an ordinary sermon. I decide to speak about the novel and recently-released film, The Da Vinci Code (I just read the book, but haven't yet seen the movie).

I get lots of positive comments about it at the church door. This phenomenally-popular, but controversial, book seems to have struck a chord in some members of the church, as it has in the general population. As a suspense novel, it’s a real page-turner, but it’s filled with spurious, poorly-documented historical claims that have caused some to question their faith. Folks seem glad that I've finally addressed the topic directly.

My sermon manuscript may be found HERE.

Afterwards, a number of church members come up and tell me how good they think I look, and how they can see that my hair is beginning to grow back in. One of them even remarks that the prednisone-induced roundness of my face – the feature I sometimes call my "Charlie Brown face" – seems to have diminished a bit. I'm not sure that's true just yet, but it could be.

I'm still within the usual, three-week recovery period following my sixth and final chemotherapy treatment, but I feel stronger now than I did at this stage in my earlier treatments. I think it's psychological: I'm done with chemo now, and I know it. That fact alone is enough to give me a psychological boost.

In the early evening, after supper, Claire and I go for a walk around the neighborhood. I feel pretty tired by the time we've gone a couple blocks, but we press on. My physical therapist has encouraged me to walk.

I'm actually on a hiatus from physical therapy for a few weeks. My medical insurance has authorized a maximum of 25 sessions for the year – of which I've already used 10. Not knowing what sort of side effects I'm likely to experience from the radiation treatments, it seems wise (to my therapist and myself) to suspend the PT sessions for a while, and start them up again once I'm several weeks into the radiation treatments. That way, I'll be able to maximize their benefit, at a time when I'm most likely to need the help.

As with so many aspects of medical treatment these days, it's all about the insurance. I'm just thankful to have the approvals I've already received – because the PT exercises really have been helping.

It looks like more walks around the neighborhood, or on the Boardwalk, are ahead of me...

1 comment:

presbybop said...

Great sermon! Thanks for proclaiing the good news so clearly and lovingly.

- bc