Sunday, December 11, 2011

Catching up...

Ok, so when my grandma sends me an email and lets me know it’s time for an update, I figure I should probably get my act together and let you all know what’s going on…

It has been a pretty busy last couple of weeks. Let’s start with Thanksgiving first. We had an awesome time with family – on Thanksgiving day we headed down to Kokomo to celebrate with Steph’s family. After consuming way too much turkey, sweet potatoes, and oyster dressing (I did anyway, Steph chose the pan without oysters), we headed down to my parent’s house for the weekend. I was able to squeeze in a little deer hunting with my brothers, and our family’s first experiment with smoking a turkey was a huge success. The time together with our families was much needed; Levi soaked up the attention, and the kids logged plenty of cousin-roughhousing time.

The following Monday I headed down to Austin, TX for a week and a half business trip. It was a busy trip, I tried to squeeze in about 3 weeks of work while I was there. Steph had her hands full here at home, and was appreciative of the help she received from her mom and dad, who stepped up and filled the role of co-kid wranglers while I was away. While down there, I managed to miss the first significant snow fall of the year, a sure sign that winter is right around the corner. It is hard to believe that the year is almost over.

On Friday, we all headed to Indy to attend Gary Brackett’s Christmas party. Gary Brackett, a linebacker for the Colts, has personal experience with leukemia, as he lost a younger brother to the disease a few years ago. There were a lot of kids there – we guesstimated over a hundred. Levi and Caylee queued up to talk to Santa (although Levi wasn’t a huge fan), get an autographed football, then grab some pizza. We met some friends there we hadn’t seen in years – someone that Steph used to work with when we lived in Greencastle. It was great to see them, and congratulations to their little boy who just finished his last infusion after three years of chemo treatments. All the kids there received a very generous amount of Christmas presents – a big thank you goes out to Gary and all the volunteers that put on the event for families like us. It was a moving experience to see all the little ones playing and having fun together despite the struggles they were facing.

So – you’re probably wondering what the latest is on little Levi’s treatment… Well, he has had a couple of scheduled bone marrow tests, but they keep getting postponed due to his ANC count. The doctor wants his levels to be back up to normal before they test his bone marrow in order for the results to be as accurate as possible. And it’s not uncommon for it to take a while for the ANC count to completely rebuild. It has actually gone down in the past couple of weeks, but the doctor is not concerned and said the count can fluctuate for quite some time before everything returns to normal. His other counts are fine. As of right now, we home healthcare will come out on the 19th to draw blood and check where things are, and then we’ll see if the counts are up to where they need to be to schedule his bone marrow test. If not, we’ll continue to wait. It’s a little unnerving to keep waiting while not knowing what the next steps will be, but we just continue to trust God; He’s brought us this far, and we know that He’ll see us through whatever comes next. The doctor is still considering the option of cancelling Levi’s 5th round, but that will of course depend on what his tests show.

We are guessing that nothing will really happen until after Christmas. So we are looking forward to hanging out as a family over the next couple of weeks. It has been a joy to be whole again; the kids are growing up so fast, and Levi is even starting to sprout a little hair fuzz on the top of his head. He is doing so well here at home – laughing, playing, eating, and sleeping just like a healthy little child should be. We thank you for your continued prayers for him and for our family; please remember the families of sick children this Christmas season. It can be a tough time of year to balance the stress of a little one fighting an illness, the travel and expectations that come along with the season’s traditions, and the financial hardships that can strain relationships and mar family time together. May the Peace that only God can give keep these families together.

We love you all,
Michael, Stephanie, Caylee, and little Levi

1 comment:

  1. Dear Ones,
    Thanks so much for the update. God had all ready led me to understand that you were probably on a business trip, and really busy, too. I'm pretty sure the delay in the tests is God's way of answering the prayer that Levi is going to be home for Christmas. I just needed a confirmation. Amen.
    We continue to pray that all is well with all of you. Hope your Christmas is wonderful and blessed.
    Our love,
    Grandpa and Grandma G.