Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back.

​The past week has been a long and grueling time for the Schaubhut family. Carl’s 10 plus hour long surgery went very well. As we spent these long hours in the surgery waiting room, I was not afraid, confident that the surgery would go well and it did. The days in ICU were difficult for Carl as he struggled to deal with multiple tubes, IV lines and wires attached all over coming from everywhere. He was scared and rightly so but he progressed very well getting stronger each day.
It was great to walk with him each day as he showed just how strong he truly is while progressing in his healing. As he improved each day, he felt the strength of the support of all who are sending prayers and well wishes his way. The barium swallow test on Wednesday showed that there are no esophageal leaks which mean that the esophagus is healing well after surgery. Today, he took his first shower in a week and is homeward bound.
​The pathology report which we received today showed good results as only 5 out of 42 lymph nodes contained cancer cells. I hoped for great results where no nodes were positive. The tumor which was removed still had some living cancer cells. What does all of this mean for his recovery? He will probably require another round of more aggressive chemotherapy after post-operative healing is completed. This news seems to be the worst blow yet in his fight against the disease yet the oncologist is encouraged by the clear surgical margins and his progress thus far.
Today, the cancer diagnosis is very real and the road to complete recovery seems very daunting. While I am grateful for the expertise of Dr. Bolton who accomplished a complete surgical removal of the tumor, the wishful thinking that a complete cure at this point is not present is upsetting to me today. It is difficult for me to see my dear son suffer physically and emotionally. While he is comfortable to be home in his familiar surroundings, all is not close to being back to any sense of “normalcy”. Feeding through a tube is Carl’s reality for the months ahead. Eating is a sensation which will not be experienced in several weeks. This may not be so important for some individuals but this is very difficult for Carl as a chef whose passion is the creation of food which is enjoyed by and shared with others.
Thus the roller coaster of emotions continues. The highs of getting the chest tube removed are replaced with the lows of the pathology report results. The Lord is taking care of Carl and all of us during this difficult journey. The Lord has blessed Carl with a wonderfully loving wife, siblings, mother-in-law and friends who are not flinching in standing by his side to provide him care and support. He is also blessed with a great medical team of caring individuals. For your love and support, we are forever grateful. These are the blessings of this cancer journey. After all, tomorrow is another day.


Rose Schaubhut

Post-op day one and two- so far, so good.

Hi everyone! It’s Vicky again. I wanted to share the latest update from Alix on how Carl is doing. As anyone who has ever had surgery (or taken care of a loved one who has) can attest, the first 24 hours are always pretty rough. Sleepy from anesthesia, sore in places you didn’t know could be sore, sleeping in a hospital bed covered in plastic (eeeew) that likely has the worst pillows anyone has ever encountered. That pretty much sums up what Carl has been through over the last day or so. Yesterday his nurses got him up out of bed for the first time and he is continuing to progress well. Slow and steady is the name of the game, and his initial recovery has been no exception to that. He has gotten stronger every day and really has made awesome progress! Alix and Rose have been in the ICU at his bedside as often as the unit will allow, and at this point his team is preparing to move him out of the ICU. Alix says he is as strong as an ox and a pretty typical if somewhat grumpy patient (that’s a good sign, haha). Some things to be aware of…at best the surgical unit will allow only immediate family members to visit, and the decision has been made to restrict Carl’s visitors even further while he remains in the hospital, due to his need for rest and recovery. We all know that our chef loves to host a crowd, but he’ll have to wait a bit to do so- doctor’s orders for now. Please keep prayers and positive thoughts coming for speedy healing and smooth recovery- they are working!!!


Surgery is done!

Hi all- this is Vicky, Alix’s big sister, with an update from Team Schaubhut over at Ochsner. As of about 6 PM Carl’s surgery is finally finished and he is now headed to recovery. Surgery went well, albeit a little longer than anticipated, mainly due to the fact that Carl’s anesthesia needed to be tweaked in order to get him correctly sedated. I teased Alix that maybe they should have just given him horse tranquilizers instead, ha ha. Anyway, his surgeon reported the encouraging news that his lymph nodes didn’t appear enlarged at all- a sign that the chemo and radiation did their jobs as we all hoped- and the pathology will confirm in four days’ time whether he is cancer-free. Please keep Alix and Carl in your prayers. Although we can chalk today up as a win, they still are facing recovery in the hospital and then at home, with a long few months of adjustment. The prayers and positive thoughts are helping- and. I know they are both feeling all the love! Stay tuned- more updates to come!


Surgery is still a go! Took a lot of meds to get this Catholic New Orleans boy down. Surgery could be longer than expected. Not much else to report. Please know how much we appreciate all the support! Alix