B-cells, T-cells, auto-antibody rejection, acute rejection, chronic rejection, acute vascular or humoral rejection, OKT-3, IVIG, CD4-T cells, CD3, lymphocites, fibrosis, mycophenolate, myocardial movement, imuran, immunosuppression, chemotherapy, plasmapheresis......................the list goes on and on.
These are but a few of the words and terms we've learned and heard about in the past few months. None of them make a whole lot of sense on their own. They are medicines, cells, diseases and treatments. The discussions that have developed because of Garrett's issues have included some or all of these at one point or another, but all we really know is that it's not "take two aspirin and call me in the morning." I wish it were that easy. We just want our healthy, happy boy back home again and playing in his yard.
The fact remains that his heart is sick and it needs to get better. We've learned that he has three different rejections going on. A battle on three fronts. He's fighting T-cell rejection from his body attacking his heart, and he's fighting B-cell auto-antibody rejection from his current heart and traces from his last heart that were never discovered.
We also know that Garrett was feeling better today and that is a blessing to us all. That's why I often say that every day is a victory. When we pray at night before we try to sleep, we ask God to hear us clearly. To see us holding Garrett up to Jesus in prayer and beseeching Him to grant our request. Nothing is impossible with God. Nothing.
I believe there are blessings of grace when we accept the pain and offer it for lost souls. Our fight is difficult, but it has a glorious gift at the end......Paradise. I cannot imagine going into a fight with only the earthly gratifications as our only reward. For 11 years now we have fought on this battleground. Somehow in His infinite love, God picks us up just when we can't take another step. He manages to give a sick little boy the ability to smile and play when he wakes up just a little better than he was the day before.
There are brighter days ahead, but darker ones may also linger in the shadows. Garrett wants to live. He wants to run and play and forget about the pain, needles, hospital beds and nightmares. I want that for him. But if I want for too much, too soon, impatience can cause more disappointment. So we will continue to wake each day and call it a victory, rejoice in the little achievements and pray that as time goes by, this pony's steps will become lighter and the grass will get a little greener.
We may have three fights going on at one time, but we also have a Trinity of power who have already won this biggest battle of all. So this battle is nothing. I'm just thankful for the little victories right now. Every day that Garrett wakes up and feels better, it's as if he forgot any pain from yesterday. This enthusiasm strengthens us, and it gives him more strength to fight the beast another day, hopefully knocking it out of the park this time.