The Real Story

Two-thirds of children treated for pediatric cancer will suffer long-term effects from treatment. Our kids are being treated with old drugs that were created for adults, because it’s the only option. 

Strangers ask Leah, “How did you break your leg?” 

And she politely responds in her sweet, quiet voice, “I fell.”

But I want to tell them the real story. Sometimes, on my crazy mom days, I want to shout the story at the top of lungs- to anyone who will listen.

She has cancer. Her type of tumor is incredibly rare and at the back of the research bus. She was given crappy chemotherapy drugs to stall the need for radiation. Then radiation became our best option, and we’re not even sure it worked. Her body is suffering not only from the cancer, but from the very medicine that is supposed to make her better. I wonder how we live in a world full of incredible technological advancements, and nobody can figure out how cure my daughter… But I know the answer. It all boils down to money. Childhood cancer drugs are not profitable, so the pharmaceutical companys aren’t interested. Research requires money, and less than 4% of the National Cancer Institute’s funds are dedicated to childhood cancer research- not even close to reaching the back of the bus. So we sell t-shirts, shoelaces, and lemonade and pray that our small contributions to research will be enough. How pathetic. This mom votes that we launch less rockets and spend those billions of dollars on pediatric cancer research.

Tonight, you are my lucky listeners. Ha ha. But, tomorrow, I’ll just smile when the next stranger asks, and Leah answers. Then I’ll thank them for holding the door.

Today’s visit to the orthopedic surgeon and physical therapy went well. The doctor was expecting the bone to be displaced, but in fact, it looked improved. Thank you for the prayers! We return in three weeks, and if enough new bone has filled the break, Leah will be given a new cast that is below the knee. She will be much more comfortable with a shorter cast.

We also learned some new tricks at PT that will make the daily routine a little easier. It seems she has a new strength and confidence about her today. It was a good day. 💛

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September

I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted an update… Truthfully, I was holding out for a good report. 

Unfortunately, Leah’s had many challenges since starting back to school. The most recent being a broken leg. Tuesday night, her leg gave out and she fell. She has a broken tibia, and she’s casted from her toes to mid thigh.

She’s not allowed to use crutches or bear any weight on her leg, so we are working on new daily routines. But, I do have a good report…

Today, less than 48 hours after her break, she returned to school and made it through the day with smiles. I’m really proud of her. 😊

While there are no changes in the MRI images, her leg weakness is concerning- especially now that it has resulted in a bone break. We met with the physiatrist yesterday, and she will conduct a muscle and nerve study in the near future. We have to wait until the cast is off for the nerve study, and we don’t have an exact timeline on that just yet. We will know more about the break next week.

Once the cast is off, day long physical therapy may be an option. It is an intense program, approximately 4 weeks, that may result in regaining the ability to walk independently.

Once again, we must be patient. 

Please pray for complete healing. 💛