Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The Calm Before The Storm

Just four days after Ruby's bone marrow biopsy the first level results came back, confirming the presence of Leukemia in her bone marrow. Even though we expected this, getting these results was a necessary step in the process of confirming her diagnosis.

Speaking of diagnosis, her official one is AML/M7 (Acute Megakaryoblastic Leukemia/M7 Acute Myeloid Leukemia). I can go into a Google explanation for you, but since I only understand half of what I've read, I'll let you do your own research and I'll fill you in after we've had the sit down with the doctor to go over everything in detail. We will meet with Ruby’s 'team’ of doctors next week to go over all questions/concerns we have and discuss the plan for treatment. Assuming we have no new developments between now and then, she will start chemo in two weeks and she is estimated to undergo this treatment for six months.

Good News:
  • God is good. Again and again…can’t say it enough. 
  • Ruby is still well: she's showing no physical symptoms (fever, bleeding, paleness, lethargy).
  • AML is the most common type of Leukemia for kids with Down syndrome. (That means this team of doctors has a lot of experience with it.)
  • Ruby will have a low-dose chemo treatment plan, as that has proven to be the most effective with this type of Leukemia. 
  • Ruby’s blood work, outside of her low platelets, looks good. Even the level of Leukemia in her marrow is low enough to allow for the doctors to allow a little more time for full test results to come back before starting treatment.
  • Kids, especially with Down syndrome, tend to respond very well to this treatment and have a high rate of remission.
As crazy as it seems (at least to me), Lehr and I have remained calm throughout this process, including the news yesterday. Maybe God is allowing us to save our strength and worry for when we will need it, as the diagnosis is only the beginning of this journey. Maybe He has used Ruby's first diagnosis to grow us to handle this type of thing in stride. Or maybe we are just trusting God because it's all we can do.

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