I just spent a weekend with the St. Louis branch of my family and once again witnessed again the inspiration that this family exudes. Reuven is flourishing, despite his illness.
But it was not a perfect weekend. There was one major incident.
As is typical at the Kirshners, hardly a day passes that there isn’t a little excitement. This time it wasn’t Reuven. It was his brother Avraham or ‘ Hummy’ - as he’s is called. While eating the Shabbos meal at some family friends all the children (of three families eating there) were playing and – to make a long story short – Hummy was hurt falling in such a way that he bit his tongue practically in half. Blood was gushing!
He was rushed to the hospital emergency room where he got ten stitches. He will have a full recovery. But he is pretty traumatized now. Hummy is the sweetest kid you’ll ever meet. How sad I am for him.
That was pretty much the gist of my weekend in St. Louis. Aside from that incident it was – as I said – pretty inspiring.
I bring it up now because there has been a further update on Reuven. His planned treatment has been canceled. My daughter explains in an e-mail she sent out which I present here in full.
Hi all. We just wanted to let you all know that there has been a change of plans as to Reuven's treatment. We received a call from the hospital on Friday, informing us that upon further study of Reuven's CT Scan, there was actually shrinkage in his existing tumor B"H. This means that he is still chemo responsive.
However, because of that he is ineligible for the Phase 1 Study that he was going to start tomorrow. Instead he will continue the chemo regimen that he was previously on. He will begin again IY"H tomorrow.
Hashem has His ways and we cannot be sure what this means or how this will all play out. In the past Reuven has responded well to chemo WHILE getting it, but after some time without it, new tumor/s grew. But, who knows, maybe this time Hashem will send Reuven a Refuah Shelaimah through regular chemotherapy. It is all in His hands! We thank you for all the responses to our last letter and for davening for Reuven. Please, continue to daven for Reuven Ben Tova Chaya!
Menachem (Neil) and Tovi Kirshner