Mommy's Time Out Magazine November 2018 - Page 22

Hello Friends,

We have some really difficult news to share. Lauren has relapsed. Her leukemia has returned. We are heartbroken. This all happened so fast. She was fine one day and limping the next and then needed help standing up then needed to hold on to something while walking. A bone marrow biopsy confirmed our worst fear.

It’s so hard to have worked so hard and put her through so much these last 2 1/2 years just to be right back where we started. Cancer is a monster.

This time around her treatment will be much more intense and will include a bone marrow transplant. She has already had surgery to place her port (her other one was just removed 2 months ago) and she started chemo. She had a lumbar puncture and thankfully her spinal fluid remains clear from any leukemia cells. We have another long road ahead of us but just like last time we will eventually see the light at the end of the tunnel. Lauren will spend most of the next 5 months inpatient. She needs to be monitored closely.

Our daughter Leah was tested to be a bone marrow donor for her sister but the results indicated that she was only a 50% match. However, the transplant team let us know that there were several 100% matches for Lauren in the national database. The team has begun the process of contacting people and asking if they are still able and willing to donate their marrow and if so start the process for further lab testing. Every time I think about the fact that a complete stranger will ultimately save Lauren’s life I can’t help but tear up. Whoever this person is will be my hero forever.

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McKinley is doing really great. She's loving school, LOVING dance & enjoying being off chemo meds. It really is amazing how much she's grown, how much she's developed & how much more personality she has since she's stopped chemo. All things are looking great which is wonderful news. We've been very busy with advocating & promoting childhood cancer awareness month & attending a lot of events. We did have one scare at this months appointment but all was confirmed negative with an ultrasound. Myself, a few other "cancer moms" & McKinleys oncologist were all concerned about a vein by where her port was placed especially since she had a clot in the past. But all was confirmed ok with a quick ultrasound (Thank God). I'm not sure I'll ever be able to take a deep breath but I do try too. We are praying for a Halloween at home this year (last year we spent 8 days in the hospital fighting a nasty virus over Halloween). And although the nurses & staff came by her hospital room to trick or treat, I'm actually looking forward to sweating & fighting bugs on Halloween night this year. It's the little things 😉 Thank You as always for keeping McKinley in your thoughts & prayers.

xoxox,

Karen

LAUREN'S CORNER