Unsung Heroes

Dear Faithful Family & Friends,

I have enjoyed researching and writing the entries for the series, “The Heroes Among Us.” I know that you, my readers, enjoyed them, also, so I plan to highlight a hero from time to time.

Last month, I had the pleasure of spending several hours writing snail-mail thank-you notes to family & friends.  I have kept a careful record of all the benefactors, listing each expression of care and compassion.  The list is a reminder of God’s good gift to us:  in the midst of our affliction, we give thanks for each one of you who has prayed for us, read this blog, communicated encouragement to us, or sent/delivered a gift [food, bread, book, DVD, etc.].  I keep a box of your communiques [cards, notes, letters, photos] and I eagerly read and re-read each one! Over the past six months, each of you has ministered to us and we are deeply thankful for each of you.  You are the “unsung heroes” who give us strength, courage, and resolve!

Speaking of “unsung heroes,” my husband, Stephen, has certainly been one of these!  During the past six months, on top of his other responsibilities, he has been entirely devoted to my care.  He has encouraged, advised, cheerfully served me and, when necessary, tenderly nursed me back to health, especially during those scary chemotherapy illnesses.  I’ll never forget how, during the virus/high fever of last month, he never left my side. So often, he would come into my room, just to kiss my little bald head.  Looking back on it, I think he might have been also checking my forehead temperature, but no matter — it was very comforting!

As you continue to pray for me, please remember that I am not yet “out of the woods!”  After my surgery, the OncoType diagnostic tool indicated that I had a HIGH [41%] risk of recurrence for breast cancer. Phase One, four rounds of “the big guns” of chemotherapy plus Phase Two, one year of infused Herceptin plus Phase Three, five years of [the oral pill] Tamoxifen are all designed to decrease that unacceptably high risk.  Even though the phase of “the big guns” is over, we need to pray together that the combined effect of all three phases will accomplish the work of reducing the risk of a recurrence.

My next infusion of Herceptin will be 01.25.10.  The previous infusion [01.04.10] of Herceptin alone [without the two chemotherapy drugs] was exactly as Dr. Carroll predicted:  “You won’t even know you are on it.” I am very glad to report that he was correct!  I never skipped a beat, so to speak.  Every three weeks, until 10.01.10, I will travel to Gainesville for Herceptin and I plan to drive by myself; it is an easy 2 & 1/2 hour trip [one-way].

I am fully recovered from my virus of last month.  I am sleeping well, eating well, and I look forward to returning to swimming, ballet, and Pilates!

Coming soon on this blog:  Family photographs and family newsletter!

Coram Deo,




Filed under Breast Cancer

19 responses to “Unsung Heroes

  1. sallie powell


    I have thought of you all day and was so glad to see your new post. Hearing that you will be enjoying the activities you love is so encouraging to me. I pray these next several months will be full of God’s strength and grace as you continue treatment and healing. Thanks for the update!

    Blessings to you!

    • margopayne

      Dear Sallie,

      I so appreciate your company on this journey. I thank you for your prayers and for expressing your enthusiasm for my updates! I am buoyed by your encouragement.

      Coram Deo,

  2. Carole Stewart

    Margot, what wonderful timing! You have been on my heart and mind so much lately, wondering how you were doing and how the Herceptin treatment was going. As I was reading about how well it’s going, how well you are doing and how blessed you are to have Steve (as am I to have Rick) the words of the old hymn “Great is Thy Faithfulness” came to mind… “Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow. Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!” We will continue to pray & praise!

    In His love and service,

    • margopayne

      Dear Carole,

      Thanks for your faithfulness [and for Rick’s] in praying! We are looking forward to dinner you with you both this week. You both are dear friends — and family! We consider ourselves blessed! Won’t the Paynes & the Stewarts have fun this summer, celebrating the family being together in one town?

      Coram Deo,

  3. Meredith Fishback

    Hey there! Ed and I are back in the saddle at Marquis. I was happy to have some good news of your steps to good health, and a friend had a baby girl! So, there you go, two types of good news, two ways God showers us with blesssings. If you need someone to drive you on one of your trips, maybe I can help. As long as it isn’t on payday! Ha!
    Love you lots,

    • margopayne

      Dear Meredith,

      Welcome back, from your world travels! I look forward to hearing about it! You both work so hard — it makes me happy to know that you are refreshed from a well-deserved vacation!
      Thank you for your offer to drive! Actually, I drove myself last week and it went very well! It may seem silly to drive 2 & 1/2 hours, for a one-hour visit to Dr. Carroll but his office is where I feel safe!
      Thank you for your faithfulness in praying!

      Coram Deo,

  4. Betsy Poepping

    So glad the Herceptin doesn’t cause any ill effects…I pray that you will be safe from any more “bugs/viruses” as you are undergoing this treatment. You have a gem of a husband and what a wonderful example to all of true love – just like Jesus loves us – in his loving care of you.

    • margopayne

      Dear Betsy,

      Thank you for rejoicing in me, with the glad news that the nightmare of chemo is over and that the Herceptin phase of infusion is going very well! Thank you for your continued prayer! Yes, Stephen is a gem and how grateful I am for him! And for faithful friends like you!

      Coram Deo,

  5. Patty Lang

    I am so glad that you are feeling better physically and continue to be such a strong example to us spiritually. During my BSF study of John I have thought of you many times, last week we learned that “there is no greater proof of God’s power and grace than when a person is given such supernatural joy in God that the comfort he receives is greater than his pain. When a person suffers yet has the courage to endure without murmuring against God, the strength of faith in God manifests a particular glory of God that many of us know nothing about.” You have been an example of suffering without murmuring and a shining example of the glory of God to all of us. Thank you for your willingness to share your journey with us.
    In His Love,

    • margopayne

      Dear Patty,

      Your encouraging message brings tears to my eyes. I have much to learn about suffering. I give glory to the Triune God, the God of all comfort, who comforts me in my affliction. I am happy to share my journey with my friends and family. Thank you for your constant care, concern, and faithful prayers. It was great to see you at church, with three generations in one pew, worshipping the Triune God.

      Coram Deo,

  6. Debbie Trostle


    I caught up with your blogging. Wow! I know you’re glad to be done with phase one. Phase two wasn’t around when I had BC. Tamoxifin – I have been on in since 1992.

    Your comments have been such an inspiration of courage and keeping your eyes and heart centered on God. What an amazing example.

    You and Stephen remain in my prayers. I saw him at St. Peter’s in Dec. while I was with Andrew. He was talking with someone so I didn’t get to say hi and ask about you.

    Take care,

    • margopayne

      Dear Debbie,

      Thank you for reading my blog and for praying. We sat by Andrew yesterday and got caught up a little with him. I’m so glad to know that you have been a BC survivor since 1992! I hope to be there someday. I appreciate your faithfulness.

      Coram Deo,

      • Debbie Trostle


        I also, beat the odds that were given to me. Praise God for His mercy!

        In His awesome grip,

  7. Lesley

    I am so glad that the chemo is over and that your first round with this new medicine went so well! We will continue to pray for you and love you 🙂 Your loving comment about Steve makes me smile…I remember my dad kissing my moms bald head too 🙂

    Love you,
    F,L, and A

    • margopayne

      Dear Lesley,

      Your poignant remembrance of your father and mother brought tears to my eyes. How well I remember the dinner we had a Ruge Hall, honoring the memory of your mother, Shirley. I keep up with your family on FP. It is wonderful to read about how Angel is progressing. You and Fonsie are doing a great job of parenting and of encouraging others to care for the vulnerable. You have such compassion for children. May God bless your family, as you reach out to others. Thanks for your faithfulness in praying for me.

      Coram Deo,

  8. Julie Purvis

    How wonderful to hear the Herceptin was so easy the first time!! May it always be so! I continue to pray, along with so many others, that all this treatment will scout out and obliterate any errant cancer cells remaining anywhere in your body and that great glory will come to God as a result of this very difficult journey you and your family are on.

    • margopayne

      Dear Julie,

      Thank you for your constant care, concern, and prayer for me! I would love to meet at Au Peche Mignon one day soon and get caught up with you! I continue to pray for you and your family, also.

      Coram Deo,

  9. I am so relieved that things have gone well for you so far and pray that this journey continue to be successful. What I know for sure is that our God is a loving God and may he grant you and Steve joy, grace and peace as you take this next step in your treatment.

    • margopayne

      Dear Isabel,

      It was so delightful to see you and Nellie at SPAC recently! Thank you for your faithfulness in reading my blog, commenting, and in praying! It is friends like you that encourage and strengthen me for the ongoing battle.

      Coram Deo,

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