One Big Adventure
An opportunity to log in some of the thoughts and activities of our homeschooling family of eight. We love books and good food and aspire to a Christ-centered, multi-generational, agrarian life.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Keeping things in perspective

One of the incredible things about a journey like childhood cancer is being in the hospital, having friends and family who are so sorry for all the things we are enduring and looking around and seeing so many families that have it so much harder than we do.

I recently met another mom on the floor whose seven-year-old son, Hunter, had ALL (the same leukemia James has) at the age of three. He went through three years and three months of treatment and then 11 months of followup. Just after his 11 month follow up check up, he relapsed. It took three weeks for them to diagnose his relapse (to determine what kind of cancer it is) and he just finished his first month of treatment. He will have to have a bone marrow transplant at some point soon. They have been in the hospital here or in Des Moines for seven weeks, they expect to remain here until Hunter has his transplant (probably in two more months) and then they will have to stay a minimum of 90 days following his transplant. His mom, Tori, was finishing up her second year of nursing school during his first year of chemo. Her husband couldn't deal with all the stress and now she is a single mom with three children. Home is Des Moines, IA.

I also met another mom whose four week old daughter, Chloe, has been in ICU for all but a few days of the last month. She was born in Red Wing, MN with the vessels in her heart reversed (as I understand it). She had surgery and then was placed on a special machine, needed to keep her alive, which can cause blindness and developmental delays or retardation on down the road. The only time, Jennifer has been able to hold Chloe was the three days they weren't in ICU. They expect to be in the hospital for at least one to two more months and are very uncertain about what kind of care Chloe will require when they take her home. This mom, Jennifer, has a 20-month-old son at home.

The remarkable thing about these moms, and others I have met, is that none of them complain about their circumstances. They talk about it without bitterness and are senstive to others who are walking through other trials that may not be as severe as their own.

It is a privilege to meet these people. I'm sure they would appreciate your prayers.

Love, Stephanie


Mom said...

Just read your latest post Steph, have copied your last two and sent them out to my prayer list. Hannah had written a little about the one family, I'm glad you elaborated on it. It's the old adage 'our troubles loom large until we look at others' troubles'. Continuing to pray that all goes well and you can get on the road later this afternoon - safely. That the Lord will make it abundantly clear that it's safe for James to travel and keep you all safe. Will keep checking... Love you, Mom

Anonymous said...

Dear Skellys, We are hoping to hear that you finally made it out of Minneapolis. I'm curious to know what volume of blood a "pint" really is into a body the size of James', but John says I'm being far too literal. Have a safe and careful drive remembering that it is more important to get there safely than fast. Love to all of you. Nan