Thursday, May 10, 2012

Day Minus 5....

Transplant day in the profession is called "day zero" or a new birthday.  Andrew finished day -5 by completing his 6th round of radiation and is that much closer to his new birthday.  The nausea and overall pain in his body is being adequately being managed by various pain and nausea meds.  Andrew is still achy.  A developing side effect is his loss of taste and smell.  Food is bland to him and everything taste the same.  Radiation does cause dry mouth and a testament to this is at the front desk of the radiation oncology department, where there are boxes of Lemonheads to take for patients.  Andrew prefers Sour Warheads;-)  Another side effect to the radiation is he is getting "sun burned".  Eat your hearts out Jersey Shore fans;-)

We were scheduled to be admitted Friday, but with last night's admission, we are here for the long haul and at least one month in isolation post transplant.  I can't believe how quick the transplant has come up.  Radiation is almost over and Andrew will get three days of highly toxic chemo drugs over the weekend, a day of rest Tuesday and voila:  TRANSLANT/Andrew's new birthday!

We have started this race and journey and as this picture shows, we are not quite sure where this journey will take us, but we know there is a finish line. That is where our faith as a family will need to be exercised and stretched as it has already been the past several months.  I know the worse case scenario side effects Andrew may develop and I have witnessed death several times over in the oncology ward, but I stand with a pea sized faith, trusting God's good and sovereign plan will be fulfilled, in the midst of my fears and doubts.  It will take a community to heal Andrew and get him well.  It's not only health care professionals and immediate family, but all of you my friends and loved ones who will get us to the finish line..  I humbly ask you all for your help in whatever way you can extend.  Many of you have committed to praying for Andrew and our family, others have written wonderful bits of encouragement and others have hugged magnanimously or given a shoulder to lean on.  Whatever way you decide to help us run this race, I thank you ahead of time as you surround Andrew and our family until we cross the finish line.  
"I thank my God every time I remember you"Philippians 1:3 

              So with the transplant right around the corner, I indeed lift our plans to the Lord:
Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. Proverbs 16:3

As always,  I will keep you updated on Andrew's well being as soon as I can.  Can I ask a favor, can you comment on when you got the email notifying this new post?  I am having issues with the delay of notifying you all there is a new post.   And while your at it, comment and just say hi or whatever.  It would sure be nice to hear from you all.  Thanks!

Almost Forgot, check out this inspiring video of oncology patients at Seattle Children's Hospital:



  1. Hi Joe & Andrew & family! Just wanted to drop a note of "Hello!" from the Kim family. Remember when I told you we pray for you guys every night and that Tyler always adds "Pray for a match & donate!"? I'm having a hard time converting it to "Pray for a good transplant!" but we're working on explaining answered prayer to a 3 year old mind. But regardless you are covered every night in prayer by us.

  2. Joe -- I think your posts are arriving about 12-24 hours later. I am glad to hear Andrew is mostly comfortable for now! Hang in there're almost at the starting line for the race "kicking leukemia to the curb FOREVER!"
    I saw the announcement about Anna in the Kane County Chronicle today. I would like to reach out to Anna's you have their contact information?

  3. Just got the post now. It's 5/11, 12:05pm (East Coast). I am praying for Andrew!

  4. Hi Joe,
    We are praying for Andrew and your family. We will continue to pray that the pretransplant regimen will go as smoothly as possible. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Though we have never met you, our hearts go out to you and Andrew. Hang in there. Will be waiting for good news...

  5. Hey, Joe & Andrew! Day Zero is almost here!!!! Rooting for you with joy and hope in God! (p.s. I got the email of this post 12 hours after you posted it).

  6. Hello Family! Our dearest Andrew - Uncle Albert, Margot and I pray for you every day!! We love you and have faith that you will get through all that comes your way. You're the strongest young man we know and are so proud of your courage and perseverance.

    All our love,
    Auntie Jennifer, Uncle Albert and Margot