A Bell Update!

Now that the Holidays are behind us, I thought it would be a good time to provide an update. Again, I must say the kindness and grace you have showered upon Margaret and the rest of us have been overwhelming and humbling. We are grateful to God and to all of you for your goodness and faithfulness. Many charitable gestures have been acts of amazing grace and all appreciated!

First and perhaps foremost, Margaret has nearly fully recovered from the two surgeries which she had and is resuming as normal schedule as possible amidst numerous medical treatments. She has attended worship at Wellshire a couple of times, including the late service on Christmas Eve; she is walking an hour a day; she almost went to yoga today; we did go out with friends on New Year’s Eve; and she is planning on returning to work at Habitat for Humanity at least part-time tomorrow! As the late Stuart Scott would say, “Boo ya! She’s cooler that the underside of a pillow!”

She is steeling herself for the second round of chemotherapy this coming Thursday, but she said today that the first wave “wasn’t as bad” as she expected it to be. She has sundry aches and pains with limited nausea and fatigue, but in general she has not just pushed through it, but bulldozed her way (Okay, I stole that metaphor from Mike Patrick.), as if she was driving a big yellow Caterpillar tractor. (That’s unabashed product placement for this one Presbyterian minister. Shop Wagner Caterpillar!)

IMG_0042 This was a big day. While I was at church this morning, her very hip, very kind hair stylist and his wife came over to shave her head and style her cranial prosthesis (i.e., wig), the extreme cost of which was underwritten by angels from Heaven above! (Jehovah jireh indeed.)  Katie reported that her mother didn’t shed a tear, and they all went happily to brunch at the Squeaky Bean after the deed was done. I came home to a new woman! The “prosthesis” is a little longer, a little lighter, and a little healthier than her hair has been recently, and she looks fabulous!

As many of you know from Facebook, Megan got engaged New Year’s Eve in Washington DC to a very fine young man, Joe Schmoll, from Montana.  He is a mechanical engineer by training but currently lives in Washington DC and works for the Senator from Montana. Yes, yes, yes, a wedding will add to the chaos and excitement in our home, but we are absolutely thrilled to have something positive to focus on. It’s nice to see Margaret reading bridal magazines and not depressing cancer tombs – erm, tomes. (Oops!)

I personally want to thank all of the staff members at Wellshire, who made the very hectic Advent-Christmas season as easy as possible for me. We made it through with a minimum number of staff meetings and a largely, mentally-absent Head of Staff. You guys and gals are THE BEST! Thank you!

And, again, thank you for your concern, love and prayers during this very difficult time.

7 thoughts on “A Bell Update!

  1. John, and Margaret, thank you so much for sharing your journey and your lives with us. It truly is uplifting and inspiring. (but don’t feel any pressure to always show just the strength as big as it is.) Congratulations on the wedding news. What fun! This will bring so much positive energy to the family. Sounds like Megan has been blessed with a wonderful guy who is equally blessed with Megan. We are hoping and praying 2015 brings one celebration after another. Let the wedding bliss begin! Beth Graves and family

  2. Congratulation Megan, I did not see the announcement on Facebook, it has been a bit hectic around here, as in most homes. Now I can take a deep breath, and settle down; Margaret and John, you have raised two wonderful daughters. I am so very happy for all of you. Please give Megan my love. Dee

  3. John, you and Margaret are an inspiration to us all. Your faith is contagious, and it’s clear your sense of humor remains intact. Thank you for making time to share this experience with your community. Sherry Kenney

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