Love for Lauren
Who is Lauren?
Lauren Harman is 30 years old and married to Andrew. They have a 8 year old, Lily. Their family are intercessory missionaries at C-HOP and Dayton SHOP. Lauren was diagnosed with Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma in June 2010, but has been dealing with it's symptoms since August 2007. Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma, or CTCL, is a rare type of cancer that begins in the white blood cells and attacks the skin. There is no known cure for CTCL.
How Cancer has Changed her Life
Lauren has been diagnosed with an aggressive form of CTCL. Symptoms that Lauren experiences include severe itching over her whole body, intense pain from touch, extremely dry skin, raised skin patchiness and discoloration, burning, insomnia, irritability, and loss of hair. She has insomnia from the pain and itching and at times only gets an hour or two hours of sleep a night. The cancer has taken away her ability to do much of anything and larger portion (6-8 hours) of the day is often spent in the bathroom trying to lessen the pain, itching, and extremely dry skin with lotion and coconut oil.
Lauren has tried several different treatments to help slow the progression of the cancer and manage her symptoms. Unfortunately, most of these treatments have either showed little or no results or made Lauren's symptoms worse. Although her symptoms continue, she has shown some signs of improvement, it is a roller coaster of symptoms. She will improve for a while, then get worse, then show signs of improvement, and then new symptoms start or old ones return.
In August of 2011, Lauren began treatments with the Burzinski Clinic in Houston, Texas where she saw positive results for 6-8 months. The results were short-lived however, and the cancer again progressed over the next year.
Lauren started natural treatments at the Get Well Center in Mansfield, OH in June 2013. Lauren saw improvements with the treatments she did, but due to a series of infections, she was unable to continue these treatments. She is now at the Ohio State University James Cancer Center doing treatments with a CTCL clinic as of December 2013. She has seem some improvements, but also some side effects.
She was scheduled to start a clinical trail in early 2015, but at the last minute she was denied participation. After being off all medical treatment for 5 months, she started a new treatment in November 2015 that wasn't available before. Even in a short amount of time, this treatment (along with a new nutritional supplement) seems to be helping Lauren improve significantly again.
Lauren and her family need your encouragement and prayer support in this difficult season! It is our belief that God can and will heal Lauren of this cancer and that she will not die. She has received numerous confirmations from family, friends, and even strangers (who do not know her situation) that God will heal her. We believe in that promise, but she needs relief from the severe pain and symptoms she experiences in the meantime.
The Financial Need
Many of you have partnered with us to help save Lauren's life against this cancer already. Some of you are just learning about her story now. Wherever you've entered into her story, we ask that you consider financially partnering with us to help Lauren.
Some of her treatments have been covered by insurance, or funded by grants through the hospital, but there are many other financial concerns for their family. These include paying for her health insurance every month, insurance co-pays, traveling to and from the hospital for treatments every month, expenses realted to the many hospital stays that occur, daily medical supplies used to keep Lauren from getting an infection, medications, nutritional supplements to boast her immune system, and clothes and personal necessaries to keep Lauren as comfortable as possible.
In the 8 years that Lauren has been battling cancer, she and Andrew have spent well over $100,000 on medical expenses and insurance. There is a continual need for fundrasing to help Lauren be able to continue treatment to fight this cancer.
Update for December 2015, the Love For Lauren fund has been depletted over the last 2 years since the last major fundraiser. Because Lauren is still battling this cancer and continues to need finanial support, we are updating the page and launching a few new fundraisers.
As mentioned, the Harmans are full-time missionaries who raise all of their own financial support. This means that their livelihood is dependent upon the donations of their ministry partners, friends and family. During this difficult season, their ministry is looking different, but Lauren and Andy plan to return to IHOP full-time when Lauren has improved or been healed. If you would like to partner with the Harmans in their ministry efforts, please make separate checks payable to Living Waters Ministries (do not write their names on the checks) and mail to:
Andrew & Lauren Harman
PO Box 72
Versailles, OH 45380.
Thank You & God Bless You
Please continue to pray for the edema, redness, and itching to decrease and disappear FOREVER! Pray for her to have peace and hope instead of discouragement. We continue to ask God for complete healing for Lauren's body and heart and that all signs and symptoms will be gone! Thank you for faithfully praying with us!
Thank you so much for thinking and praying for Lauren. We really appreciate your ongoing support. Lauren right now is pretty incapacitated and I'm doing most of the correspondence right now. She wants you to know she is very grateful. Below is a recent update for you all.
Sorry this update is coming so late, but it has been a very difficult and complicated few months. Since July, Lauren has been in and out of the hospital 6 times for related infections due to her IV Port, PICC line or other central line catheter. Back in early July, we began to see great results from her cancer treatments at the GETWELL Center; however, within a few weeks of starting treatment, she got a viral infection that attacked her whole body, putting her in the hospital for the first time. Then her port got infected. Each time we tried to replace the port so she could resume treatments, they became infected. Trying other central line options gave the same result. Her body and her type of cancer would not allow her to have an indwelling IV line in her body without a major infection incurring. Two of the hospitalizations resulted in at least 2 weeks of care due to sepsis from staph. This is very serious and dangerous, but our Lord saw her through and since Thanksgiving, has now been without any indwelling IV line or infection. Not having a central Iine IV meant she could no longer continue at the GETWELL Center. They require a central IV line of some kind for their particular kinds of treatment. Lauren and all of us were very disappointed. However most of our hospitalizations were at the Ohio State University James Cancer Hospital in Columbus Ohio. It is here that we found out that they had a once a week clinic for her very rare form of cancer (Cutaneous T Cell Lymphoma), run by one of the best CTCL specialists and a partner Dermatologist. Long story short, after praying much and seeing that God had possibly led us to this next direction in her treatment, Lauren is starting her treatments there. She has had her first cancer treatment and will continue once a week"¦actually it's once a week for 3 weeks then off one week (as long as her blood counts are good and her side effects minimal). Lauren has suffered horribly with this disease. The deep pain and the peeling of her skin; the 12 to 15 lbs of fluid in the form of edema under her skin; and the constant itching, pain and discomfort from this type of cancer is unbelievable. Most don't realize the severity of her condition unless you can be with her over time. She is on pain meds and some meds for anxiety. The dryness and discomfort has also affected her eyes at time and it can be difficult to read or watch even TV. We are prayerful and hopeful in the faithfulness of our Lord and our so thankful for those of you who have generously given to help pay for her medical bills. We have applied for financial aid at the hospitals and will be getting bills from the specialists we have seen in the hospital as well. Your giving helps also pay for her co-pays for the various prescriptions she is on and the various topical ointments and creams she uses throughout the day. She usually has to lotion her body about every 2 to 3 hours. These topical treatments are at least 50 to 70 dollars a week. Special laundry detergent is used for sensitive skin and other bandages and gauze pads help when her skin is "weeping" fluid from the edema. So you can see, Lauren, as well as her family are indebted to your kindness as we battle this disease with her. Do we believe she will get better? YES. God is not done with this story; we are just in a couple difficult chapters of her book. Please, more than anything keep praying for her. Pray wisdom and power be given to her doctors and that healing flows through her medicine. Pray that Lauren is given a heart of hope as she continues to battle this disease; that she "rests" more in the Lord and trusts in His divine timing and care. Pray her body removes the extra fluid and edema; that her pain level decreases considerably too. Pray that she has more quality time with family, especially her 6 year old daughter Lily. Being in pain and being so tired from the meds makes it difficult. Pray that Lauren and Andy have wisdom about their life and their direction right now. Pray God meets every one of their needs"¦physically, emotionally, spiritually, and financially. Please remember Lauren's two families, THE O'GUINS, and Andy's family THE HARMANS, as they both help, support and care for them all. We praise God for all of those who think of us often, pray and support us. Again we thank you for giving to the GO FUND ME SITE. Please feel free to share this story and site with others. May God richly bless you as you have Lauren and our family. Have a Blessed Christmas,
The O'Guin and Harman Families
Love for Lauren *From Lauren* Had my 3rd IPT treatment today - it's crazy how, compared to most experiences, my main treatment days are the days i feel BETTER (except for not sleeping the night of). My LDH cancer indicator is down again!! (Liver enzyme that is elevated when you have lymphoma) We saw it drop 20 pts during just the 1st week of detox and this time it went down like 40 more pts! Plus, while I'm still not feeling great (dealing with the detox and killing cancer cells), I'm better than I was the first week. Docs say first couple weeks are the worst, then all down hill from here. Our life is nuts - it's 24/7 treatments,supplements, shakes, supplements, coffee enemas (sorry TMI - too much information), supplements, lotion/oil...Mom and I seem to go non-stop. And detox is really hard some days. BUT God is working! Besides the cancer indicator decreasing, we're seeing little improvements that even my docs are impressed with the speed of. And I'm so grateful for Mrs. Chung (Nurse Practitioner who owns/ runs the center) who lives every hour of her life serving Jesus - praying, cooking, and caring for her patients. Thank you to all our friends and family who are helping us to fund-raise what we need to help us overcome this stupid disease. Thank you to our parents who are helping us to do all this. Thank you to my amazing husband & daughter who must fight everyday to hope & push & care for me through this. and Thank you Mom, who i literally could not do this without - Jesus knew, in the womb, what would come on this earth and who I would need you to be to get through it. The desert is dry and difficult. Seems neverending. But Jesus says we will emerge, leaning on Him. You're worth it all.
Well it's been a week at the GET WELL CENTER. After just a week of detox and immune building treatments, Lauren's one cancer marker has gone down 20 points. They are very happy with this. Pain, itching and just the "yuks" are up because of detoxing, but today we are seeing improvement in the look of her skin. Even Lily is making comments. Lauren's life is 24/7 work at getting better (esp for her wonderful caregiver...her mom). A lot of work, but soooo worth it. Please pray for Lauren and me, we are TIRED. God is sustaining us. So glad I can give Andy a break for a while. This is pretty intense in that we are doing some treatments at home too. Keeping up with shakes, supplements, meds,etc. Really giving my nursing a work out again...I feel so blessed to be using my skills again. Today was our first very low dose chemo/ IPT treatment. It was fascinating and Lauren did real well. I really like her MD too. She will be getting these IPT treatments x2/week. Next week should be rough again with detox and the killing off of the cancer cells. She will be having more alternative treatments to support her and cleanse her. Nights are rough cause she can't sleep so keep praying and praising God. Sorry so long...but a lot to share. Amazed with God, the treatments, the staff and the human body. Yes her mom is a nurse and so proud that God bless me with this profession. Night. Love you.
Remember to post "For Prayer Painting" if you are donating for the Prayer Painting Fundraiser, and leave the name of who it is for and an address on the event page or in a personal message. Thanks!
Love the new picture!! LOL :)
It is amazing to see how God is using all of you in our lives. Thank you so much for helping our family as we contend and fight for my healing! Each one of you is an incredible blessing!
Thank you so far to all who have sacrificed both financially and time to support and pray for Lauren. May God continue to bless you all in so many ways; to show that what you sow will be reaped 10 fold. Glory to God!