On Sunday, February 22nd, Meg (age 8) showed me some funny red spots that she had on her arms and legs. They looked like teeny tiny little bruises. I thought of those funny spots throughout the day and made me think of a few other weird symptoms Meg had been having over the past two weeks. I thought of a large persistent bruise on her shin that would heal and then come back. I remembered a time the week previous that Meg had come home from school and said, "Mom, I crashed in P.E. today." What she meant was, she was too tired to finish P.E. that day. After talking to Kendon he mentioned noticing that Meg hadn't eaten breakfast the last few days. Putting all these things together we decided that we'd better take her to the doctor. I scheduled an appointment for Tuesday after school and our doctor, Gary Sena, ran blood work.
On Wednesday afternoon at 4:45 Gary called and asked where I was. I told him that I was at home. He asked if Kendon was there or if I was alone. As soon as he asked me if I was alone I knew it wasn't good news. Gary told me that Meg's white blood cell count was abnormal and that we needed to head up to the E.R. as soon as Kendon got home. I know enough about cancer to know that an abnormal white blood cell count probably meant leukemia. I asked Gary if that was what he was implying and he said, "I'm so sorry. Yes." Gary is the doctor that discovered Sirri's cancer as well and my heart aches for that poor man having to deliver such heartbreaking news to one family twice. We love Gary so much.
Fifteen minutes later Kendon was home and off we went to the hospital. We've been living, eating, breathing, sleeping cancer ever since. We spent the next 7 hours at Madison Memorial hospital and at midnight we left for Primary Children's hospital. We arrived at 4 in the morning and got about 3 hours "sleep" (ha!) before the doctors started showing up and blasting us with information. My mom arrived that afternoon and as always it was such a blessing to have her there as a support. Teresa Codling stayed with Sirri and Connor Wednesday night and Thursday my dad, sister Cindy and her family arrived at our house to stay with them. What a HUGE blessing that was.
Friday Meg was admitted to surgery where they placed a port, did a bone marrow and spinal fluid biopsy and administered her first round of chemo directly into her spine. Her bone marrow and spinal fluid biopsy results came back in such a way that she was placed in the standard risk category. That is a good place to be. It put her survival rate at above 90% and risk of recurrence low. We felt very grateful for that.
We spent the next 2 days in the hospital learning a LOT (we should all have our honorary medical degree by now) getting chemo, roaming every hall of that hospital (you just can't slow Meg down) and preparing ourselves for the next 2 1/2 years of treatment. Tentative completion date of June 2017. On Monday night we were able to go home!