Monday, September 26, 2011

Scan Week this week

Sorry for such limited posts this month.  Between back to school and my Gold Ribbon campaign I slacked off on the writing.  Things have been going well.  Everyone is finally adjusted to the new school routine and as the weather begins to get a bit cooler I'm already starting to think about counting down to spring:)

Lisa goes for scans this week. I my crossing my toes, fingers, legs...anything I can that we see no new growth since last scans.  She looks so good and this new study of 10 pills a day is soooooooo easy.  I pray and pray and pray it's working because it makes this cancer so much more bearable, yet, my cynical side seriously doubts how 10 little pills a day could do the trick.  We will see know soon enough and I'll be holding my breath until Friday when they can give us results.

Life does go on regardless of cancer and we have pics to prove it:)

Maranda at her first homecoming for Canton HS; next week she goes to her second homecoming. That's the glory of going to "the Park" where there are 3 highschools and 3 homecoming dances you can attend! She goes to another one next week! 

While Maranda was out on the town, we were enjoying the cider mill!

Don't worry Tommy and Chrissy were with us at the Cider Mill, somehow they escaped the camera!

As always, keep praying and live life to the fullest!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

THE GOLD RIBBON...What's the big deal?

We are half way through September and in 15 days you will be plagued by a sea of pink as breast cancer awareness takes the stage in October.  I try to figure out what the big deal is and find that I can't quite articulate my point.  So, borrowing from a multitude of parents who have posted on various sites  below is the "deal":

We are seeking to bring the same awareness to Childhood Cancer as the Breast Cancer Foundations has done for their particular cancer. We want Gold to be as well known as Pink. We want a HUGE Gold Ribbon hanging in front of the White House during the Month of September. We want to see gold bats used by the Major League Baseball players used in their game's. We want to see Gold footballs used by the National Football League, as well as the Gold ribbon on their helmet's, shoes, uniform, and goal post's? We want EVERY TV news channel to mention childhood cancer awareness month EVERY DAY in September. We want money donated left and right to childhood cancer so that children can go thru treatment in a matter of months....knowing just what meds have the best chance of working on their type of cancer.....just like Breast cancer warriors.

Many children are subjected to numerous different chemo treatments because there is not enough research/money/funding to know what will really work. Most chemos were not actually designed for childhood cancer, they are things that have worked with different adult cancers. Kids don't have awareness, research money or the drugs they need. There hasn't been a new drug for any of the ped cancers in over 20 years.....WOW....would people be ok if that were the case for breast cancer?? Of course not, and we shouldn't be ok with our kids being left out..and we are not, we are standing up and saying SEPTEMBER IS CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS MONTH!! GO GOLD!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Happy 14th Birthday to Maranda!

Maranda turned 14 today!  This had to be one of the least eventful birthdays ever, but she seemed pretty happy.  Her one present was a laptop (of course that present counts for her birthday, Christmas, and Easter!)  We had a nice dinner out and cake and ice cream at home.

The past week has been filled with celebrating birthdays, starting school and starting Lisa on a new study.  So far so good, all things going smoothly.  All the kids seem happy with their teachers and classes, Lisa is excited to be in first grade (although she spent two of the afternoons sleeping on a cot they set up for her in a side room!).  We will be keeping our fingers crossed that the study she is now on keeps the cancer from progressing.  It is one of the easiest ones ever!!  She takes 5 pills twice a day.  That's it....things could be so easy if this works...let's hope these pills can do the job of beating the beast.

School pics and bday pics coming soon!

Don't forget to keep your gold on... September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month!  A special kudos to Christine Progar....she wrote:
"I thought I would let you know that your blog post on Childhood Cancer Awareness month inspired me. I asked the principal of our school in Romulus, MI to support childhood cancer with our monthly jeans day. Know that Metro Charter Academy is going to donate part of the funds raised this Friday, 9/16 to the Children's Cancer Research Fund. Thank you for all you do for Lisa and other children with cancer. God bless, Christine Progar"

THANK YOU CHRISTINE!!!  Great idea.  What does everyone think?  Are their similar opportunities that you could do at your school or workplace to help raise awareness that September in Childhood Cancer Awareness month...their ribbon is gold...and money is needed for research to find cures for Childhood Cancers!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Birthday - Continued

We celebrated Lisa and Maranda's birthday last weekend on Saturday at the lake with a few folks that stopped by. OK most of you were there because the place was packed! It was a great day and the weather cooperated until the evening when the wind and rain chased everyone inside.

Sunday the kids and I went off to the Saline Community Fair. Animals, rides, and a smash-up-derby mud racing made it a hit. The photo is of Lisa and one of her BFFs enjoying one of the many rides.

Lisa's scans from last week were "stable" from her previous set and her bone marrows were negative. [Yeah!] Her lab work was improved enough to start treatment so she began treatment after school on Tuesday, 9/6. For the next few weeks she'll have only one appointment each week for infusion and after that labs and scans to determine the effect.

Keep sending her your very best. -Mike

Friday, September 2, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Lisa turned 7 on Wednesday.  I found my self wavering between gratefulness and anger.  Gratefulness that she has doubled the time doctors originally predicted she had to live and anger that she has had to fight so hard for that time.  Then I find myself thinking, thist is the life lesson I am supposed to be learning... to appreciate and be grateful for each and everyday. How many birthdays do I truly appreciate?  How many times do I  actually think about the year that went by and what the person accomplished or lived thru, or how they grew, or appreciate that they still have a decent quality of life?  Probably not enough.  With Lisa, it's easy to always count the blessings; but with myself or my other kids, siblings, parents, friends, I often take for granted that they have got another day, week, year under their belt...that they have grown, and that they still have a very high quality of life.  I was having  a conversation with my dad the other day regarding how he did in the city senior Olympics this year.  He was lamenting that he only took one medal this was bronze....prior years he's always gotten at least  three medals with at least one of them being gold.  I snickered as I realized that next year he would move up to a new age group and there are so few people that compete at that age he would get a medal because he's the only one that shows up!  It struck me....I often fight so hard for the "gold" or to be the best, when will I realize that "just showing up may be good enough".

Enough of my philosophizing.  Lisa had a great birthday and it was made special by many people.  She was scheduled for a day of exams at the hospital.  There was a major complication...there was a flood of all things in the basement of Motts which caused all of the scanners to go down.  Our awesome techs let nothing stand in their way and moved Lisa to the adult side so that she could get her scan done.  They also pulled strings and used all their powers to keep things moving along on time so that she could get out and enjoy her birthday party that evening.  Each department Lisa met with provided her with presents for her special day. She came out of sedation quite quickly this time and mutter to me "Let's go".  When I got her to the car she groggily informed me that she didn't even yell at me or act grumpy waking up this time.  I asked her what was up with that and she said "Chuck E. Cheese".  Hmmm...does this mean I need to go to Chuck E Cheese if I want to avoid the wrath of the waking Lisa...ughh!

We headed home and I was hoping that Lisa would get a little nap in before her party.  No such luck, she was groggy, but ready to go.  We had a wonderful surprise when friends brought by a present for Lisa.  I had posted that I was looking for a "used" DS for her.  They said they had one and brought it over nicely gift wrapped.  When Lisa opened it, I noticed it was in a brand new box.  Their response..."it will be "used" in a few minutes".  I would  love to argue the point or reimburse them, but I'm pretty sure they're not going to let me!  THANK YOU for your generosity!!

Lisa had a great time at Chuck E Cheese.  She had five friends join us and no one could have guessed what Lisa had been thru that day. She got her picture with the mouse, ran and climbed on the equipment, and used all her tokens.  She had a wonderful time and kept on going even after the last friend had left.  We finally went home at 9:30 and she succumbed to the pain from her bone marrow biopsy, asked for a pain pill and headed to bed.

She was up early the next morning and ready to go back to the hospital.  We completed all the tests including repeat bloodwoork and EKG.

Today we received word that finally all the tests came back good enough to start her on the newest antibody study.  So, next week, after her first day in first grade, she will head to the hospital for the new study.  She truly is a warrior.

Tomorrow, Saturday, we are having a big party at the lake.  Any of you in the area who are interested in coming, give us a call.  We will be celebrating Labor Day, end of summer, life and fully appreciating Lisa, Mike and Maranda's birthdays!