yet I can't come up with anything to say.
Ty Asher Gibbons - Bone Marrow Match 10 out of 10
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 9:31 AM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 5:23 AM
How does Morey's on Monday at 8:00 for dessert and presents sound? But remember last year they kicked us out nicely because they closed at 9:00? For once 8:00 means 8:00, unless someone else has a better idea. It's getting down to the wire, so we know Marianne has already left for Cali.... Mel, Steph and Sarah are one step ahead of the game but we still need you guys so we can shower you with our gifts. Marilyn doesn't think she'll make it before Christmas and says her central exchage is Jeff's office next week. Lana, you need to sneak away for an hour to feel normal. So spread the word and decide if this will work or not. Cheers-Jen and Adria
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:49 PM
Lana's good friend wrote this. I thought it was so beautifully written, it needed to be shared with everyone... Thanks Kresta
Have you ever learned something and immediately wished that you could turn back the clock just two minutes? Back to when you didn't know? Back to when life was uncomplicated and mostly good? It is true that ignorance is bliss. And yet, too often, the secret is out before we realize that our lives are going to be irreversibly changed forever. My dear friend learned just such a truth this week. She was going along with her merry little life; chasing kids, selling a house, building a new house, spreading joy and sunshine like she always does. I think she was probably like me; fretting over little things like what gifts to give for Christmas and how to find time to clean her house before the holidays and what she was going to make for dinner. Suddenly the "secret" surfaced and now she is worrying instead about her darling little girl and chest ports and IVs and spinal taps and chemotherapy and hospital recliners that never let you sleep. Instead of baking for Thanksgiving, she is struggling to put on a happy face for her little daughter as she brushes her long gorgeous hair and tries to find a way to tell her that all this beautiful hair will soon be found in big clumps on her pillow each morning until there is no more. Now she is curled up and crying in a hospital room by herself in the dark, wee hours of the morning only when she is sure her daughter will not see her fear. She is far from friends and family, worrying about her other children farmed out among relatives, worrying about what the next months and years will hold. And I wish that there was some way to take it all back, because, trust me, the road back to before seems so very much shorter than the long, long road through. And my heart breaks for her.Then I think about the "secret" that I just discovered and wish that I, too, could go back. Back to yesterday when life was great as I knew it. And yet, the secret was still there. Not a menace that could hurt me physically, but an ugly monster just the same. I was blissfully oblivious but that doesn't mean that the damage wasn't done. It just means that the stench was not yet apparent, like the dead mouse under my freezer in the basement. Just because I couldn't smell it, doesn't mean it wasn't there, preparing to knock me down with its odor the next time I opened the door. And I have to wonder which I hate more, secrets or surprises. Then I realize that there is no reverse button on this roller coaster called life and that the only way past is right through the murky middle. So, my friend, I will gather my courage and brace myself for the journey, praying for angels for me and for you. Angels to carry us through.
Posted by Kresta
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:53 AM
Today... Monday... always the day, the big dance, the show.
Emma and I showed up at Primary Children's this morning for her treatments. I was so excited because we were only there for Chemo, basically in and out in an hour. I could handle that, Emma could eat (no fasting for tests) and we were happy.
Dr. Phil (seriously, but not the real Dr. Phil) came in and checked on Emma. She said she was happy, but gassy (quite hilarious description) and hungry.
The doctor then turned to me and said, "Well, we probably need to talk." The blood instantly rushed to my face as this statement brought back terrible memories of two specific occasions. I mean when has, "Well, we probably need to talk," ever meant anything good?
The first of these occasions was when I was a sophomore in high school. I was dating a severly attractive boy (he could bench 175, that was a lot). His name was Brad (the coolest name eva') and we were H-O-T! Anyway, one evening he takes me on a drive and completely unbeknownst (yes, that is a word) to me, he was breaking up with me. I mean usually I could tell if we were drifting apart as a couple, or I was the one doing the dumping, but no! He said, "I think we need to talk," and WHAM (not the singing group) it was over. Heartbroken.
The second occasion was just a couple of weeks ago. Dr. Graham called to let me know the results of Emma's blood draw. She had been sick. I was expecting something... but not that! Dr Graham said, "We need to talk, (this sentence is becoming a theme here... see?) You need to sit down." To which I responded, "I'm hanging up now." At which time WHAM (again, not the singing group, however I would like a reunion)... Leukemia.
As you can see this "talking" is not a good thing for me.
Anyway, Dr. Phil said that Emma has philadelphia chromosome translocation . Long story short (click on the link if you want some biology) two chromosomes (#9 and #22) have cross breeded, which is against the rules! This makes it harder to treat leukemia. These two cells had an affair (shame, shame) and as a result have caused lots of mutant DNA throughout her cells. In the end, Emma will need a bone marrow transplant. In the beginning (I act like it was so long ago) this is what we were so thankful she didn't need.
Her siblings (all five of them, thank goodness for proliferation) have now been tested to see if they are a match (we will know the results in two weeks). They each have a 25% chance that they will match. No this does not mean that we have a 125% chance of matching. Come on, where were you during statistics? But, with so many siblings, the chances are obviously higher that a match will be found.
This is what we are praying for... that a match will be found within her siblings. Please, please, I am pleading with you (I have lost all pride) to join me in prayer as we ask our Heavenly Father to help us through this time.
Of course it is late at night. I can't sleep and everything seems darker than it really is. The light will come tomorrow. The christmas trees and the season give me hope. I will head over to Emily's house tomorrow because her house sparkles and it makes me happy. You all make me happy and you all give me hope.
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 11:59 PM
We left for Utah after church and had a nice visit with our friends Beverly and Keith. My neighbor, Diane, chauffered us down which was very comfortable.
Our treatment wasn't until 1:30 which makes it hard because Emma can't eat before and since she's on roids she thinks she's starving to death.
They got her in at 11:00 which I so appreciated because then she could eat.
She was incredibly brave. Last week it took 45 minutes to access the port in which she gets chemo and they draw blood. This week it only took 10 minutes because she wasn't fighting it so much. It actually doesn't really hurt her, she just works herself up and thinks it's going to hurt.
The snow started about 8:00 am and never let up which means we're staying another night in Utah. We heard the roads to get home were nasty and to tell you the truth, Diane doesn't drive after dark.
We ended up spending over six hours at the hospital. Emma's red blood count was so low that she needed a blood transfusion. Transfusions take several hours so Emma painted and did crafts while Diane and I visited and made fun of celebs in the People Magazine. Can you say BOTOX?
Hopefully we'll get home tomorrow. Until then, Jeff will have the fort held down (hopefully)!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:06 PM
I am so happy to be home! Emma and I arrived home on Monday.
We actually left the hospital Friday afternoon and went to stay with my cousins in Draper. That night Emma had a bloody nose that lasted for 35 minutes (chemo patients aren't supposed to bleed for more than 10 minutes). I was so nervous we would have to go back to the hospital because the bleeding lasted so long, but as we loaded into the van, the blood stopped. Thank goodness!
We went in on Saturday for a blood draw, had Sunday off and then went in Monday morning for Chemo and more blood draws. Also she had another spinal tap and bone marrow aspirate. We haven't got the tests back from either of those, and I am quite anxious to hear if there is leukemia in the bone marrow. We're wishing no!
So we got home Monday night and it was so great to see the family again. Ty kept saying I missed you Emma and Carly kept staring at me and then cuddling and then staring again.
The house was decorated with a huge Welcome Home banner from her school and lots of fun activities, treats and gifts awaited her arrival.
She's loving the activities because she's bored sitting at home and she loves the treats because she thinks she's starving to death (the meds make her hungry). She can eat!
For the most part Emma is optimistic and happy. Every once in awhile she'll cry because she knows she's going to lose her hair or she'll be disappointed that she's missing out on something at school or church.
Amazing people and amazing things have happened in the last couple of weeks. I can't believe the outpouring of service, love and prayers.
Thank you. Thank you.
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 9:23 PM
Due to overwhelming phone calls (1 from a verry hopeful mother in Mexico) in regards to a Congratulations on Steph's big news...We regret to inform you all that the previous statements leading to the assumptions of an upcoming birth from Steph have all been False. Her friends -.(a.k.a Sarah, and Mel.) apologize for any inconvenience these false statements have caused.
To set the records straight - There is no bun in the oven with Steph
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 9:30 AM
I know you are super busy and I pray every day for you and for Emma. I was just wondering if there was a good time to drop off some freezer meals for you. I have tried calling but I am sure you are flooded with that kind of thing. Sending lots of love from "Mallory Lane"
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 9:48 AM
I know I told a few of you at Lana's the other night about my "news" but now that I've officially told my family we're having a baby, it's time to tell everyone else now that they're allowed to know officially there is a bun in the oven. I'm not Mel so I'm 9 weeks instead of 19 weeks, but I'm not as freakishly able to hide the misery like Mel is-because she doesn't know that kind of misery. So gossip away, we'll see how fast we can spread the news!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 7:52 PM
Hi Everyone, It's Adria here...
I'm in Portland at a conference for work and for two days I've been trying to call Lana to see how everything is going but her phone goes right to voice mail. I was actually getting a bit worried so I called Jeff to see what the deal was... Lana can't find her charger!
I think Jeff is sick of everyone calling him, because when I offered to post an update, he was ALL for it! LOL
So here's the 411... Emma got out of the hospital on Friday. She goes in for another round of chemo tomorrow, and if all goes well, they'll come home to Burley on Tuesday. Jeff wasn't sure about the exact schedule, but it will be something like SLC once a week for 4 weeks for chemo, then maybe once or twice a month depending on how she responds, blood tests, etc...
I asked about her pain and fever, and he said when he talked to her today, she sounded pretty much like herself, so that is GREAT news!
Well, there you have it...
Lana, let us know if this is at all correct :-)
We're all thinking of you and Emma and your family and hoping and praying for the best!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:34 PM
With grateful heart I write this post to say thank you for all of your love and support. We have had a heck-of-a-week and it hasn't even been a week.
I am grateful for my family. The love that I receive from them.
I am grateful for my friends and the extra support that they give in time of need.
I am grateful for medicine and the miracles it can perform.
I am grateful for Emma and the extended "date" that we've had these last couple of days.
Mostly... I am grateful for my Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ. It is through the people listed above that He has blessed me. It is through the hands and spirits of His children that I am buoyed up and can continue forward.
My heart is full and my tear ducts are exhausted as I say thank you for everything.
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 1:15 PM
So apparently we are in the protesting phase. She's NOT happy. This morning she had to take 6 pills and she gritted her teeth and screamed.
At times like these I go back and forth between trying to be understanding and loving to wanting to ground her. She's old enough to understand and to realize it must be done, but then again, who wouldn't want to throw a fit.
Today they had to change the dressing on her portacatheter (don't know if I'm saying it right) and I think that was painful for her. Bandage burns are the least of her worries, but they hurt.
No fevers for almost 24 hours which is a true blessing. They were so high and made her super uncomfortable and cranky.
The pee has gone back to it's original color which cuts down on the bathroom excitement, but we know she's clearing out the drug. Have I told you that her waste is a biohazard? If we come into contact with it, it must be rinsed off immediately. Which means I have to wear rubber gloves and make sure that Emma and I both stay clean. Crap, where's my HAZMAT suit? I swear I picked one up at DI.
Lots of well wishers and love. I feel it coming from every direction.
Many, many thanks.
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 5:57 PM
Another day at Primary Childrens. Such nice people, super great doctors and nurses. Really wierd oncologists. What a perfect combination!
Emma had surgery yesterday (Sunday 23) and everything was successful. They did the spinal tap and found no bad cells, but put chemo in the spinal fluid to kill any just in case. The bone marrow draw was full of leukemia and looked very text book for what she has. They also put the catheter port in just below her left breast and it's plastic not metal. I was sad she wouldn't be setting off any metal detector alarms. They put her on narcotics which made her super strange and kind of funny, but also quite bossy and angry.
The port area is in a lot of pain today and she's had a headache, back ache and serious discomfort. Her left hand and both of her feet are super swollen. The hand looks like you took a rubber glove and blew it up like a balloon. It's really cute, but also sad. The swelling should go down soon. I think it's like having a baby. The day you deliver you don't feel as bad as the day after you deliver. I'm hoping tomorrow she's a bit better and stronger.
They gave her her first round of chemotherapy this evening. One has a name that starts with a V, one is a steroid, and the other is called donnarubison (I'm sure I spelled it wrong). I remember this one because I think it sounds like someone's name. Anyway, it's pink and they call it "little red." It makes her pee pink. Princess Pee I call it.
Jeff is catching a ride home tomorrow with Brek & Emily. I will miss him, but am happy he'll be with the boys. I think if I were them I would feel lonely... people talking about their family, knowing their sister has cancer, etc.
It doesn't sound like we'll be home until next Tuesday. Can I last another week?
Thanks for your prayers and encouragement. Pray that the chemo will work because if it does, she should have a full recovery! That's the hope and that's the plan.
Ps. Remember how I was getting super buff and physically fit? Well I just climbed up to the fourth floor and I think just possibly I might pass out. Atrophy bites!!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 9:01 PM
My beloved brothers and sisters, I testify of angels, both the heavenly and the mortal kind. In doing so I am testifying that God never leaves us alone, never leaves us unaided in the challenges that we face. “[N]or will he, so long as time shall last, or the earth shall stand, or there shall be one man [or woman or child] upon the face thereof to be saved.
Always there are those angels who come and go all around us, seen and unseen, known and unknown, mortal and immortal.
It's 12:44 am. Nights are very difficult. I am scared. Pray for many angels.
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 11:42 PM
So... where do I start? After announcing the perfect news about Melanie, this news is no fun. I promise I'm not trying to poopy her party.
As most of you have heard, I took Emma to Primary Childrens yesterday 11/21. Dr Graham called me and wanted some more blood from Emma because she had spiked a high fever the night before. The blood showed high levels of white blood cells and so we came to Primary to comfirm Leukemia. After more tests, Leukemia is what she has. It's hard to see her suffer as she's in a lot of pain, but I'm excited to have a plan of attack and know what we are dealing with. She has ALL which is the best kind of Leukemia to get, meaning it responds the best to the treatment.
Basically what the drs are going to do is give her chemotherapy until there are no messed up white blood cells. I asked how long this would take and the standard gold star treatment is 2 1/2-3 years. The time frame on this disease causes me more stress than anything. I have no doubt it will be treated properly and will be cured, it's just disheartening that it takes so long. The doctor (who is quite the little oncologist nerd, who else would I want on my team?) said for the most part, she will still go to school and do normal things.
She will be going in tomorrow for a spinal tap (remember the movie?) and a bone marrow draw. This will determine how aggressive the treatment we will start off with. If it's in her spinal fluid, they will be very aggressive. Her high white cell count puts her at a high level of aggressiveness (is that a word?) already so I don't know if it will be any different. She will receive her first blast of chemo tomorrow.
Also tomorrow, she will get a small disc put under the skin above her chest. This will hold a catheter inside of her that will be used to draw blood and inject chemo. I guess you only see a small buldge under her skin when it's all put in. As far as I know it is metal which will be quite fun because maybe she'll set off metal detector alarms and also she can match Jack and Ashton.
She seems to be in high spirits. She was in a lot of pain this morning, but we busted out the oxycotin and she's been out, I mean totally stoned, hilarious! I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love narcotics.
We will most likely be here for a minimum of another week. The food's not too bad and maybe we'll get something special for Thanksgiving like Cafe Rio (it's just down the street).
A super huge shout out to all who have called and expressed concern. Please, please pray for her to have strength and be about to fight this bastard! (can I use that word in the same sentence as pray?) Also please pray for me to have peace as I am having a real struggle finding any calm in this storm.
I love my angels that are surrounding me and am thankful that they were plucked from heaven to be placed here on earth to help me.
I will write more when I know more.
ps. Love flowers, but can't have them in the room as they might carry germs.
Hey, I didn't make the dumb rule. Dont' shoot the messenger.
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 2:14 PM
Introducing the latest offspring of the Extraordinary Housewives! Can you tell - boy or girl?? It is a boy and you may be surprised to know this baby boy belongs to Mel! She had her ultrasound today. She is 19 weeks 4 days along. Her due date is April 17 . Go Mel, Go Mel!!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:48 PM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 7:17 AM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 2:52 PM
We did it! Here are some photos of Lana, Adria, and I (Emily) as we are leaving to go conquer the world! (Or at least conquer the Ogden Valley Triathlon.) We had a great time!
We would like to give a big thank you to the other "members" of our team not pictured above. Jen came along to cheer us on, and cheer us on she did! Jen was the coach, photographer, AND cheerleader! And then there was Holly, who housed and fed us. It was great to see Holly again. We shopped, we ate, we laughed, and we were awesome! (At least we thought we were.)
Anyone who wants to join in on the fun next year, feel free! Jen has caught the fever. Next year she will be there with us, running across the finish line!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 5:58 PM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 1:43 PM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 10:22 AM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:39 PM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 7:55 AM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 5:31 PM
I don't know how smart this is putting this on the blog but I have a new phone #. So .......... call my cell and ask for it! Hee Hee! It is not the previous # I have had for 15 years so call me on my cell this week and I will give it to you!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 6:55 PM
A big thank you from us to you for Stephanie!
Bidding is closed and the winners are...
broomes - Stitchery ($25)
liz - Quilt/Sham ($80)
liz - small favors picture ($40)
jeanbean - baby blanket ($25)
julie - Mrs Meyers cleaner ($26)
sue & mickey - Give Thanks tile ($25)
For a grand total of: $221.00
Please pay through paypal to https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_flow&SESSION=v-cfOBS2Fr5sVzylE08RQDUPosgL9NVjAPb0tdMD39RhEvbbyG3hrYlVsyO&dispatch=5885d80a13c0db1f80512b0980fcab74f8f86a7539c796f168d210c4948de0f4
If the link is not working, just go to paypal and donate to firstname.lastname@example.org. Forward the receipt to hondavan at cableone dot net along with your address and I will send your goodies off ASAP!
"I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver." Maya Angelou
Thank you for giving!
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 7:52 AM
Posted by Extraordinary Housewife at 1:15 PM