Strawberry Popsicles

In the last post, I stated I would provide a brief overview of Jasmin’s cancer and what we are dealing with.  I would like to share with everyone a brief overview of what we have learned about breast cancer over the past two weeks.

The first thing we have learned is there are no two cancers exactly the same.  Every person and every cancer is different from one another.  How the body reacts to the cancer, the treatment, the biology of the cancer cells themselves, the age, race, family history, etcetera, etcetera.  I think you get the picture.

While every breast cancer varies, there are many traits that are able to be specifically identified, studied and eventually treated.  There are entire books and careers based upon this study, so I won’t get into too much detail.  The characteristics of Jasmin’s specific type of breast cancer is what I will address more specifically.

In the case of breast cancer, there are three known “receptors”.  A receptor is basically a sensitivity within the cancer cell to specific substances.  Most types of breast cancer cells have hormone receptors of some type, specifically progesterone (PR) and/or estrogen (ER).  Additionally, a third receptor referred to as HER2 is known to react to specific types of treatment.  In each of the three instances above, the receptors are either positive (receptive) or negative (not receptive).  In the instance the cancer cells are not receptive to any of the three receptors, the term used to define this diagnosis is triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC).

Among white women diagnosed with breast cancer, the percentage of TNBC is roughly 10%.  Jasmin’s cancer is TNBC.  As in all things in life, there are positive and negatives to this diagnosis.  The long and short of it is that there are fewer drugs to treat TNBC; however, the effectiveness of the drugs that are able to be used have been proven to be significantly more effective for a pathologic complete response (pCR).  A pCR is basically when there is no evidence of cancer after chemotherapy treatment.

The interesting thing we have learned about TNBC is the demographics.  TNBC is more likely in African-American and Latino women, women who have not given birth, mothers who did not breast feed when they did have a child(ren),  and/or women who are overweight with excessive amounts of belly fat.  Of course, Jasmin does not fit any of these descriptions.  But then again, God’s hand is not limited by science, studies, or statistics.  When He calls your number from the bullpen to take the mound, you better hustle to start your warm-up pitches.

On October 17th, God walked out to the mound and called for the lefty.  One thing I know for sure, we are going to let him call the pitches and Jasmin is going to “put on a clinic” (pun intended).

She faced her first batter on October 29th.  This past Monday, she received her first dose of chemotherapy.  We arrived at the facility at 10:30.  When I say we, I mean a team of Owen’s sisters and myself.

The nurses had her port hooked up right away.  There were several iv bags and shots pushed through her port.  Some to address the cancer, some to address nausea, some just to simply flush the line and prep for the next drug.  For dessert, Jasmin got a flu shot in her arm for good measure.  Jasmin finished up around 4:30 and we headed up I-35 to get back home.

While most of Jasmin’s chemo treatment was dine-in, there was a to-go order that was placed as well.  Jasmin received a pump that would push her third drug for 72 hours. This meant she would have a needle in her port until Thursday.  The bright side is that Jasmin had an awesome fanny-pack containing her treatment and the pump.  She was allowed to sport the fanny-pack for three days.  While she said it was not painful, it was very limiting. . . the actual line in her chest, not the style of the fanny pack.  The fanny-pack was black so it matched with everything except brown shoes.

Before I move along, I would be remiss in not thanking God for the wonderful woman Jasmin and I met during the chemo treatment on Monday.  Her name is Karen and she has been battling this awful disease with a flair for life and fervency for God.  There will certainly be more about this experience in a future post.  We love you Karen!

Later on, Jasmin told me the thing that hurt the most was the flu shot.  We appreciate the bravery everyone around Jasmin has shown in their willingness to get a flu shot too.  Thank you.

We are also very grateful for all of the prayers Jasmin is receiving.  I will tell you that your prayers are having a PROFOUND affect on Jasmin and myself too.  She is feeling relatively well.  She has not had any significant nausea and zero vomiting.  I pray that she continues with her amazing upbeat attitude and focus on God.

While Jasmin has not been vomiting, I can’t say the same for Jack.  I would like to share a story that happened just this morning.  Jack is sick with strep.  This is only the third time in his life he has been sick. . . mysterious ways.  Anyhow, he is being quarantined over at his Nana’s house (Jasmin’s Mom).  Last night, I swung by Beth’s to tell Jack good-night and deliver a little surprise treat of a box of strawberry popsicles.  He happily accepted and began licking on one while regaining his focus on the television.

This morning, while talking with Jack, he stated that he really liked his popsicle he ate last night.  However, he said “Dad, I did not find any strawberries in that popsicle”.  Of course this made me smile and laugh a little out loud.  I responded by telling him that the strawberries are in there even though you might not be able to see them.

It made me think about all the “strawberries” God has given us in our life.  How many times have we enjoyed God’s strawberry blessings without even knowing it.

How did I know the strawberries were in the popsicle?  In this case, I actually read the box to make sure there were no artificial sweeteners and I noticed that actual strawberries were in the ingredients.  How do we know about God and His promises?  In that case, we just have to look in His Word.

In Isaiah 41, God promises the following in verse 10:

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

God is always with us.  He is constantly reaching out His strawberry blessings.  Sometimes we reject those blessings, sometimes we eat them without even knowing it at the time.  I pray Jasmin see’s the strawberries. . . because they are in there.

Please be in prayer for Jasmin for the following:

- The chemotherapy is 100% effective against her cancer

- She has NO side effects from the chemo treatments

- Our baby is kept safe in the womb

- Comfort for Jasmin both physically AND emotionally

- Peace for Jack and Annie

- Consistency, patience and strength for Jeff

- Eyes for people to be pointed to God through this trial

- Joy

Thank you friends for all of your prayers and support!

I am going to start an email list to let everyone know when a new post has been uploaded.  If you have commented on a previous post, I have your address and will begin to include you on future notifications.  If you would like to be on the email list, simply post a comment and I will have your email address to include in the future.

 

103 thoughts on “Strawberry Popsicles

  1. Jasmine & Jeff ,
    Thank you for the update. I’ve thought of nothing else since getting the phone call from Felger’s yesterday.
    I know that Jasmine’s strength will come from her strong will and her faith in God
    There is a small army of us in your corner sending prayer and positive energy your way. If there is Anything you need,please let me know.
    Keeping you close to my heart and in my prayers,
    tommie

    • I am Mimi’s sister in Louisville, and have forwarded the link to this blog to all my children. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all, Jasmin, Jeff, and the whole family. Thank you so much for this blog, it is such a great way to keep up with Jasmin’s progress and all that is being done for (and to) her. I really appreciate it!
      Love, Anne

  2. Jeff thank you for keeping us updated. Please let Jasmin know that we are thinking and praying for her daily! Sending our love!
    The Bartel’s

  3. Thank you for the update. I love how detailed it is. Together with God, you guys are the perfect team! We will continue to pray for you guys.

  4. Jeff again and again thank you for the blog, I have always thought Jasmin to be stunning and the pictures here are a reminder of how beautiful she is…inside and out. It is great to see such a big smile. The story of Jack is so cute, we will be praying he gets better and continue to pray and ask to God to give you all the strength you need, love of love..Faith

  5. I never look at another fanny pack –or strawberry popsicle–the same ever again! God’s light shines through your words and through your ability to find the fun and blessing, in a not so fun situation. What a testimate to your faith and your marriage. Thank you for sharing the pertinent info about the disease, but also for sharing your heart. God’s will is for us to share in both the challenges and the triumphs of life–you manage to do both in one short blog…thank you for blessing us!

    Our prayers continue for each of you and for each request.

  6. We are praying for your precious family. My childhood friend of 41 years just beat breast cancer and is praying for you and your family. Her name is Julie and when I called her to ask her to pray for you she had already been praying for you. She had found out about you through Karen! Our God is an amazing God! We live in a small world sometimes! Love you Jasmin!

  7. Jeff, Frances & I both thank you for the update. We will be here for you & Jasmin & the kids through out this journey with our love & prayers and any thing else that we can do. We think about you guys all the time & know that with God’s help this will be a happy journey.
    Love,
    Frances & Horace Hill

  8. Your amazing words are a testimony of the faith you have in our Great and Mighty God. You and your family are such a blessing and are loved and prayed for by many. Love you all – Gran and Pops Wells (Ronnie & Cindy)

  9. Jeff, thank you for the lovely way you are sharing a journey through a not so lovely disease. Praying for continued blessings along the way!

  10. Love reading your updates. Thanks for keeping us posted and know that people all over are praying for you guys! We are here for anything you need!!!

  11. Jeff, thank you for your beautiful blogs and keeping us updated on your family. Y’all are constantly in our thoughts and prayers. We love y’all Donna, Buddy and Amber

  12. Thank you Jeff for the update. We continue to pray for your family. You are fortunate to have each other. Poor Jack. I hope he feels better soon.

    You are so correct about us taking God’s “strawberries” and not realizing it. That is until we are in a situation that we are forced to.

    Please give Jasmin a hug and kiss from us.

    Cinnamon

  13. Jeff thank you for taking the time to keep us updated, please know we are praying for Jasmin, you and the kids.
    Hugs, to you all, Love,
    Matt & Sandra

  14. I grew up with the Owens family. Julianna and I are the same age. Jasmin used to cut my hair too. Breaks my heart to hear that y’all are going through this, but warms my heart with the amount of faith, hope, and trust you have that the Lord is with y’all through it all.
    Y’all are in our thoughts and prayers. You are also being prayed for in our Sunday School group at First Presbyterian Church in San Antonio.
    Praying :-)

  15. Thank you for keeping us updated, ya’ll have been in out thoughts and prayers and we will continue to pray for Jasmin. Hope Jack is feeling better soon.
    Love to you all,
    Matt and Sandra

  16. We are praying for you all constantly and appreciate the updates on this journey you all are facing. Have shared this with many here in Cypress to work the Power of Prayer! We love you all!

  17. Isaiah 41:10 is my favorite verse and has helped me through the trials in my own life. I pray you hold that verse close and know that He is righteous and good and He equips us with all that we need to weather a “storm.” Lots of love to all of you!

  18. Praying for your family and for the medical personnel involved in this. May all have wisdom in their approach. May God bless all.

  19. Jeff – thank you for keeping everyone posted on how Jasmin is doing. Jasmin – you have touched so many lives and know that we all are thinking and praying for you. P.S. I love your short hair.

  20. Jasmin and Jeff,

    Robin and I have you in mind at all times. Please know that we can be leaned on for anything at any time. Our prayers are with you daily and extend geographically to Burnet, Texas, and beyond. You two are quite a team! Robin and David Hoyer

  21. Jasmine and Jeff: okay so that is YOUR story about Strawberry Popsicles and YOUR son’s questions about those “strawberries?” And now flip back about 30 years and Jeff was eating a “Strawberry Popsicle” one afternoon and as you sat at the kitchen table I was in the kitchen washing dishes. And YOUR question was not exactly the same as Jack’s but close, your comment to me went like this, “Mom if these popsicles are called STRAWberry where is the STRAW or am I supposed to really be eating this thing with a STRAW?” I almost fell on the floor laughing and you had such a serious look on your face! “Like Father…Like Son?” I forwarded to your and Jasmine’s e-mail addeess some Prayer Warriors comments for you to read. Keep being God’s Vessel’s and being a great living example of His presence here on earth…. TODAY! GOD is alive and with us here each day. I think the baby’s name should be JOY, there is NO question about that for her. Thinking and praying for all your intentions and needs. HUGS…. Sondra(Jeff’s Mom)

  22. Thank you so much Jeff for all the update on Jasmin. Ya’ll are all in my thoughts and prayers. You two are a great inspiration to all who read your blog. We love you.

  23. I am truly amazed by the strength and faith that the both of you have during this difficult journey that God has placed in front of you. Thank you for the updates. You and your family are constantly in my thoughts and prayers.

  24. Jasmin and family, please know that all of you have been in my thoughts and prayers since the onset of this journey. I can tell by Jeff’s postings the faith and love that you guys have in your life. This strength, faith and love will get you through this ordeal with the grace of God. I feel so helpless and don’t know what to do but want you to know that I am here for all of you. What I do KNOW is this, You guys have an army of Prayer Angels that will not cease praying until their prayers are answered. JASMIN, YOU WILL WIN THIS BATTLE. Keep the faith for Faith Creates Miracles as Lindsey always said.

    I have a couple of items I would like to drop by the house. I won’t visit or interrupt your schedule but just need your address. Please send me your address to my email address: t.lcreations@yahoo.com.

    Sending you all my hugs and blessings.

    Theresa A.

  25. Thanks so much for the update! Been checking often & praying often! It’s overwhelming the amount of information you have to absorb & process with this disease. You are doing a fabulous job! :0) Hugs & continued prayers!!!

  26. Jasmin–Talked to Jennifer the other night to ask questions about you. Thank God over and over that your family, friends and relatives are praying for you all the time. Remember that you can talk with me and I will be happy to tell you how wonderful and incredible God has been with me and my recent cancer. It’s amazing how you think of “ordinary” life in a different way. God makes every single day for me the best I’ve ever had…all the praises for healing has gone to God and will forever! God bless you Sweetheart and let me know if I can do anything for you..

  27. Jeff thank you for you update and detailed blog. It is so helpful to know the specifics so we can pray specifically for Jasmin. Jasmin, I am so very proud of you and your trust and faith in the Lord. You are so courageous and selfless. Thanks for sharing this trial with us. I realize you are going through this trail every minute of the day, but I know your God is going before you and preparing each step you take. He is also caring you while you take the step and will be there after you take each step so that he can catch you if you lose your footing. Keep looking to Jesus for your courage and He will flood you with his peace and love. May you rest in His arms tonight. We are praying for you, Jeff, Jack, Annie and “little bean” continually. All our love, Anne & Eddie

  28. The Owens girls are not only beautiful but they are tough cookies.! With your wonderful family and friends you will get through this with no worries. You and your family are in my prayers. Take care and stay strong.

  29. Thank you so much for update. We are praying for your family and sending love and strength to Jasmin through the works of God. Your positive attitude and strong belief in the Almighty will see you through this temporary hiccup in life. Jasmin will emerge stronger than ever and be an inspiration to women (and men) everywhere.

  30. Thanks, Jeff, for the precise detail. Please tell Jasmin we are all thinking about you guys and praying for you daily. The faith and trust you have in GOD will move mountains. The more I read, the more I know Jasmin will beat this cancer. Your family is so inspiring! Thanks again for keeping us informed. Give Jasmin, Jack & Annie hugs for us. Love the strawberry story!
    Love you guys, Pam Lewis

  31. I have been so touched by the journey that you and your family are on and am praying every day for good news. Thank you for sharing your story even though it is a very difficult time.

  32. Wow..update,details,specific requests..and the time to share it with all of us..we live you,your family,but hate that the journey will be so long..but Our God will carry you through..but know that there are thousands that,want to help with even the smallest task! ASK for help ANYTIME..we(and I actually mean Mr Blue!) are great entertaining kids..DONOT hesitate to redeem a babysitter coupon anytime..for any of the Owens so they can be free to help you!

  33. Bravest. Cousin. EVER! Grace through trials AND a picture for all prosperity of you in a fanny pack? Impressive!

    Missed you working at Wurstfest yesterday. But the booth was full of your name, so in a very real way you were there all day.

    Love you!

  34. Stay Strong Mama. You are in many peoples prayers including mine and Nicole’s. God Bless that wonderful husband of yours. What a great blog to keep everyone praying for you.

  35. Jeff & Jasmin,
    Thank you so much for your courage, your grace, and your inspiration. We pray every day for you!
    The Phairs

  36. What an amazing and heart wrenching journey you and your family are on. Your family is in my thoughts and I am sending all the positive energy I can muster to help you in your fight.

  37. Thank you for the update . . . and the interesting information on breast cancer (saves me time from researching on my own). Yes, and I do truly believe and agree with your analysis of life and that God calls us up for action and witness to test us on our true FAITH.
    God Bless you all . . . Love and Prayers!

  38. Thank you for the update, Jeff. Your eloquent and tender words show how much you love your sweet family and the Lord. Grace in the midst of trials speaks loudly to those around you. Thank you for pointing our eyes upward! Continuing to pray for all of you.
    Brooke Karr and Family

  39. Jeff & Jasmin,
    Thank you for keeping the North Park family in the loop – We are all praying for you – your strong convictions in the Lord overflow! He is with you! Sandy Small

  40. Thank you for sharing such personal and heartfelt, behind-the-scenes reminders of how precious life is.

    I will never eat a strawberry popsicle again without thinking of your correlation!

  41. We are so blessed to be able to take this journey with your family!
    I will never look at a strawberry popsicle the same!
    Jeff, you are such an amazing writer!
    Jasmin, you inspire me to keep and make my relationship with God better and better! Thank you for blessing us all!
    Susie

  42. Praying for you guys. <3
    I think everyone in this community (and beyond!) is praying for your sweet family, and inspired by your amazing faith. Thanks for the beautiful blog.

  43. Fantastic narrative, Jeff, and very encouraging how y’all have chosen to rely on the Lord in all things. We pray fervently for y’all.

  44. My goodness! What does a person say after reading what everyone else has written? Yes, you know me….I am being nosey and reading it all!!

    So yesterday I read your post in the car to everyone while Gary was driving after SHOPPING! Can’t believe I got through it before getting car sick! It was very silent as everyone listened until I got to the fannie pack not matching brown accessories. We all laughed as Gary said that would be what I would complain of. Paige said…yummmm strawberry popsicles and Karlee said too many initials for cancer! Too funny what kids get out of things.

    It was nice to text the other day and hear straight from you. Hope Jack feels better and the strep stops with just him. Jeff-you are doing an awesome job as a husband, father, writer and follower of God. My thoughts and prayers of your entire family continue.

  45. “He will deliver the needy who cry out…”
    Jeff, I laughed at your post today and felt you and Jasmin laughing also. Keep that attitude of hope and laughter because it will guide you through the tougher times…God made you this way and we thank Him for bringing you to Jasmin. You have to be her knight as God shines through you. As we pray now, thanks to you, we can be more specific with God. Our prayers and thoughts will always be with you, Jasmin and the kids along with so many others. Love from Rineyville :)

  46. Loved learning more… and clearly seeing God is in this!!! I can see his fingerprints ALL over this cancer. I also love Jack’s question about strawberries and the beautiful lesson Jeff drew from it. It is interesting to me how the Lord works. He so often brings something so sweet to our lips… it is just sometimes preceeded by crushing and mashing. Praying fervently for you both! love, Jess

  47. Thank you for the continued update! And the photos too! Jasmine, you are at the top of our prayer list every morning! We’ll hold this end up for you.
    Know that you are in our thoughts….and prayers.

    In Christ,
    Adela and Mike Davis

  48. Jeff, I love your words. God is definitely using you, personally, in a very mighty way. Jaz, I loved getting to see you today. Gorgeous as ever. And you know I love your hair. Praying without ceasing!

  49. Jeff, I love your words. God is definitely using you, personally, in a very mighty way.
    Jaz, I loved seeing you today! Gorgeous as ever. And you know I love your hair!
    Praying without ceasing!

  50. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Thank you for posting updates on Jasmin. May God keep His arms around your family during this time.

  51. I’m not one to follow many posts…. I don’t even know you, but I’m finding myself checking everyday to see how you all are doing. And I am praying for you all. I would be honored to receive an email telling me when you’ve posted something. I will continue to pray.

  52. Jas and Jeff,

    My heart goes out to the both of you and your family. Since Jennifer told me, I have kept you in my prayers and asked my family to pray for you. God’s hand makes no mistakes, and He must know what a wonderful family you have. I thank Him for giving you a strong, faithful, and sacrificing family, who can be with you every step of this journey.

    Thank you Jeff for keeping us up to date. Especially since I hate asking but want to know how Jasmin is doing. God bless.

  53. Jasmine and Jeff: I was thinking about how upside down and frantic I was when I went through Cody’s Club Foot situation without a strong relationship with God at that particular time in my life and with no support system. Jeff was only 16 years old at that time and he and my sister Ronda went with me to see the Ortho Doctor. I was only 10 days out of my pregnancy and my hormones were jumping around like pop rocks. And the doctor said after the examination, “on a scale of 1-10(10 being the worse) that his foot was a 8+ and that he could never walk or wear shoes without multiple operations. I fell apart, and Jeff was there for me that day. I could tell he wanted to cry, but he stayed strong. I fast forward to today and see Cody wear shoes, run, and even have played sports. It was a long and tough road but the results were positive . And I think now that if I had had this kind of a support system how much more relieved and stronger I could have been and glorified God through it all. And so I appreciate this support for most especially you, Jasmin and for my son, Jeff. As a Mother, it is so hard to sit back and watch from the grandstands and be so helpless. I think of Job,with his many perils of loosing his business, his children, his home, his health with huge boils all over him. And his own wife telling him, to curse God and let’s just move on. And this all started in Job 10, it wasn’t intil Job 42 that we see God giving Job the favor of His gracious Hand. But Job always praised God through it all. And that is what is occuring through this awesome blog, Jasmine and Jeff YOU both are His tools right now. As we all know. In the end, Job was double and triple blessed. And so we claim the same ending for Jasmine, Jeff, and Baby Girl Kahlig. Jeff I am so proud of you, as a son, and to see your faith in action, your true understanding of being a good husband and father. And for you Jasmine to be a Godly woman, wife, and Mother for my son and my grandchildren. This is a Job day today…just think Job! I love you both bunches. Sondra (Jeff’s Mom)

  54. So great to see you two and your precious family at Wurstfest! Grace abounds – and so do the prayers of countless friends and family. Love and blessings!

  55. Ever since I got the call from Felgers, I have not stopped praying for you Jasmin. If there is anything you need at all please let me know. Love you guys. Teri

  56. Thinking of your entire family and praying for you often! And I agree with Amber, Jeff, you missed your calling as a writer!

  57. I just heard today and realized that the last time I saw you was about two weeks before your diagnosis. I will miss our “every 6 weeks” chats and catching up on one another’s lives, kids, etc. I am praying that you have an amazing recovery and delivery and a healthy baby! I know you will beat this and we will be chatting it up in the salon before you know it. Take care, and I am so glad to keep in touch with your progress here. I know you have plenty of friends and family to visit with, but call me anytime if you want to chat with someone a little removed from it all! I told the kids about your diagnosis and tonight, Lacey Pearl said the sweetest prayer for you and your “wittle baby in your tummy.” Prayers for Jack, Annie, and Jeff too! Love ya, Robbin Matney

  58. I am Nick Mayo. I am from New Braunfels, but currently live in NYC. I am dear friends with the Sullivan family. I am inspired and moved by the artistry of the human spirit that you capture so beautifully in this blog. Please included me in future emails. You are all in my thoughts.

  59. Your story and attitude are amazing. It will be a privilege to pray for all your requests you’ve made. I’m claiming the healing above everything else! Many blessings to your beautiful family! Linda Winn

  60. Blessing sent your way sweet girl!!! Just take one breath at a time! moment one at a time!!
    You got this!!!. His will is yours!!
    In him I pray!!! < <

  61. Jasmin, Jeff & Family our prayers are daily for all of you. The blog is wonderful for everyone to know what specific prayers you need as well as letting us know these prayers are being answered. Thank you for allowing all of us to pray you through this tough time in your lives.
    Debbie & Jerry

  62. Jasmin,

    You not only have God pitching, you have a wonderful husband as well. When Mother was at MD Anderson, the young lady Doctor told me not having stress makes one’s immune system work as it’s best. With a husband like Jeff and your wonderful friends and family you have a lot going for you.
    Cheri, Kea,and I Pray for you and your doctors.

    Donny, Cheri, and Donny Newman

  63. Jeff, i and Jayashree my wife,who was diagnosed with tnbc this march is doing well after her surgery, chemo and radiation therapy. I think what keeps her going is her will to fight the disease out and remain happy, come what may.i wish jasmine well and tell her that nothing can harm you do not allow it to do so. Cheers.