Thursday, December 13, 2012

What a Ton of Ice Can Do

Ice can do some pretty amazing things.

When you think of cancer patients, you probably don't think of ice.

You think of doctor appointments, blood work, and treatment plans.
You think of chemotheraphy.
You think of hair loss.

My sweet friend Julie completed her last round of chemotherapy today.

 It was round sixteen.

After much personal research, she opted for four treatments of heavy duty, specialized chemo, 
and then twelve treatments of "standard" stuff.

But if you saw her, you would never know she was a cancer patient.  
Her countenance glows with joy and grace, to quote a friend.  
She radiates love and sweetness.

And she still has all her hair.

Keeping your hair is certainly not the most critical aspect in the battle with cancer.

But as Julie said, 
"I just felt like if I could get to the end of the chemo treatments and still have my hair, 
I'd be that much closer to being back to normal again."

I'm so proud of Julie for taking charge ...
and looking into options ...
and putting on the scrappy attitude to fight this fight!  

She did some research, and found the Penguin Cold Cap system, developed by Frank Fronda.
These caps basically put the hair follicles to sleep during chemotherapy treatments 
by taking them down to sub zero temperatures.

Sub zero as in negative twenty.  
On your head.
For many hours.

Julie's husband, Josh, was her champion during this process.  
Every week on the day before Julie's chemotherapy appointment, 
he battled rush hour traffic to pick up 120 pounds of dry ice from Emergency Ice.  
The people at Emergency Ice are a fantastic bunch of people.  
If you need ice, emergency or not, call them ... they can help you!
Josh bought more than 1900 pounds of ice from them.  
Close enough to call it a ton, don't you think?

Josh would fill up two coolers with dry ice, take them home and break the ice apart into chunks to fit into large baggies.  He would pack eight cold caps into special containers and load the ice and cold caps back into the coolers, with a numbering system to keep it all straight.
Then during chemo and for several hours afterwards,
he would help Julie change her cold caps every 20 minutes.
He had the process down to flawless efficiency.
He's going to write a manual.
It will be full of very practical, very smart and easy to understand tips, 
and probably some kind encouragement, too, because he's awesome like that.

And his manual will be backed up by 16 chemo treatments of experience, 
with the stamp of SUCCESS upon them.

Because his girl finished chemotherapy today with strength and courage ...

and beautiful hair still on her beautiful head ...

 which makes us all very, very happy.

THAT is what a ton of ice can do.

if you'd like to see a video about Penguin Cold Caps, click {here}

Shared joy is doubled joy ... let's double the joy for both of us - what are you most grateful for today? Click below to leave your comment. I'll go first :

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