Saturday, March 27, 2010

you never let go!!!

well, i must apologize. i am way overdue with an update. melissa was going to do it herself and actually has a post partially written. however, it is difficult at times for her to be on the computer as it tends to give her headaches and cause nausea. so, she told me to go ahead and share a few things with you and she will follow up at a later time.

some good preliminary results.....let me first say that i by no means have any medical background. so, anything i attempt to explain will be in the simplest of terms both for your sake and mine :). after a bone marrow transplant, tests are done to check for seroconversion. this basically mean the process by which the recepient's old stem cells die out and are replaced by the donor's stem cells. in melissa's case, it is the stem cells from the donated cord blood. there could be a few results from this testing at this point in recovery. for instance, only melissa's stem cells could show, there could be a mix of hers and the donor's, or, ideally, only the donor's stem cells would show. well, preliminary test results show only donor cells!!! woohoo. praise the lord!!! this is just awesome news and we are thrilled to share it with you.

an amazing answer to prayer.....while i was in indy with melissa, i would take her to her weekly appointments at the hospital. bless her heart, she has to go three times a week. dependent upon the results of her blood work, it can sometimes mean staying all day receiving platelets, blood, or magnesium among other things. sometimes, and it's great when it happens, she only has to stay for an hour or two. one day, on our way back home after being at the hospital all day, she sweetly said to me, "tell me that i can do this. tell me that i can go to the hospital three times a week." it is just extremely difficult for her emotionally to go there after being there for over 50 days away from the children. of course, i reminded her what she often reminds all of us and that is that the lord will carry her through. he will not let go. i remember her then mentioning something about that one of her biggest concerns would be having to be readmitted in the event of a fever or infection. (she has to check her temperature twice a day. if she has a fever, she is to call the hospital and most likely would have to be admitted.) a short time later, after arriving back home, i went upstairs and rested for awhile. melissa did the same on the lower level of their house. i would not know until later, but at some point, she checked her temperature and she was running a fever. one of her biggest fears seemed to be happening. she immediately called doug, who was on his way home from work. as soon as he arrived home, they prayed together. they prayed specifically that the fever would disappear and that she would not have to go back into the hospital. they agreed to check her temperature again in an hour. they also felt a peace about the entire situation. an hour later, melissa took her temperature and the fever was gone!!! praise the lord!!! this was such an answer to prayer. it was literally a gift to both doug and melissa that she could remain at home that evening and ever since so far. god is so faithful!!!

ways that you can be praying.....continue to pray for her full recovery and complete healing. also, she should be having a pet scan in the next month or so. it has not been scheduled as of yet. this is a critical test, as it will show how her cancer has responded to the bone marrow transplant. we so appreciate your continued prayers!!! words cannot express how much your love and support mean to each of us.

our family has so many opportunities to share about our faith through this storm melissa has faced and for that we are so thankful. just yesterday, i told someone that despite how difficult the last couple years have been, i have never trusted the lord more than i do now. he is good. he is faithful. he never fails. he never lets go. bottom line. end of story. period. i have added a new song by matt redman titled "you never let go". i wanted to close with a few of the lyrics. remember, no matter what you may be facing, god is with you and he will never let go!!!

"even though i walk through the valley of the shadow of death
your perfect love is casting out fear
and even when i’m caught in the middle of the storms of this life
i won’t turn back
i know you are near
and i will fear no evil
for my god is with me
and if my god is with me
whom then shall i fear? whom then shall i fear?
oh no, you never let go
through the calm and through the storm
oh no, you never let go
in every high and every low
oh no, you never let go
lord, you never let go of me!!!"

blessings to each of you.....

michelle

Thursday, March 18, 2010

brief update

hey!!! it has been over a week since we've posted an update. just wanted to let you know that melissa is doing well and she will be posting on the blog sometime before the close of the weekend!!! be looking for it.....she will fill you in on some exciting preliminary results, amazing answers to prayer, and ways to continue praying regarding upcoming tests. we love and appreciate each one of you!!!

blessings.....
michelle

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

it's a beautiful day!!!


it is wonderful to have melissa back home with her precious family. the children are still basking in the glow of her presence. after we dropped caleb off at afternoon kindergarten, lauren, audrey, and i went to the neighborhood park. while pushing them on the swings, i heard such sweet laughter. i was reminded that all is right again in their world. their momma is home. thank you, heavenly father.

melissa had some blood work this morning. everything is continuing to look good. i do not know her exact count. i believe it is between 3.0 and 4.0. she is resting now and i don't want to disturb her. continue to pray for complete healing and recovery.

blessings.....

michelle

p.s. i am adding another pic from yesterday.....love the love on their faces!!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

the sweetest reunion ever!!!

coming home!!!!!

as i type this, melissa is on her way to the house!!! praise the lord for bringing her home!!! kristen (our wonderful cousin and nanny), caleb, lauren, audrey, and i are eagerly watching out all the windows for her. there will be updates and pics to follow soon.

dear family and friends, thank you is not enough for your love and prayers!!! your prayers have brought her home. thank you, thank you, and thank you again!!!

we love all of you so much!!!
michelle

Friday, March 5, 2010

the latest and greatest.....

well, she didn't get to go home today, but she still has some good news!!! her count was 1.4 on wednesday, 2.6 on thursday, and today her count was 3.1!!! is that awesome or what??!! we are so thankful for the many answered prayers.

the doctors are pleased with the way the areas on her legs are responding to an antibiotic. she is receiving vancomycin intravenously. it cannot be given orally and must be administered this way so it was impossible for her to be treated in outpatient care. she will remain in the hospital over the weekend and most likely go home on monday. i will be headed to indy to help take care of her during her first week at home. i cannot wait to spend some more time with her. what a blessing it is to be the big sister to both her and jenn!!!

she will be having an echo cardiogram done on monday morning. this is fairly standard given the high doses of chemotherapy she has received. this test is performed to ensure that all the valves within her heart are working properly. please pray that the test will go well and the results will be favorable. also, please pray that the condition on her legs will continue to subside.

thank you so much for your continued prayers!!! i feel like i've said that so much, but we truly don't know what we'd do without them. i mean that from the bottom of my heart!!! i will keep you posted on her count and her dismissal from the hospital.

love to each of you.....
michelle

"what i've learned in my life
one thing greater than my strife
is his grasp
so hold fast!!!"

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Still Celebrating and a Prayer Request

What a great text message to get from my sister this morning that her white cell count had doubled from yesterday! We are so amazed, but not surprised about what our God can do!
Thank you for your prayers about that!

I was able to speak with her just a few minutes ago, and she mentioned a new prayer request. Her legs have recently shown some red blotches, that are slightly warm and feel a little sore like a bruise. They want to keep a close eye on that to make sure it's not an infection of some type. Because of that, she will stay in the hospital over the weekend and will hopefully go home in just a couple days. Please pray that these blotches will be nothing and will go away soon!

I want to tell you how good it was to hear her voice today! She has much of her old spunk in her voice now! What a JOY to hear that!!!

Thank you for your continued prayers!

Her Sister,
Jenn

"Be confident in this, that He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it." Phil. 1:6

the girl can jump!!!

are you ready??!! her white count jumped from 1.4 yesterday to 2.6 this morning!!! thank you, lord!!! happy dance, happy dance, happy dance!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

going home!!!

yes, that's what i just said!!! if all continues to go well, melissa will more than likely get to go home on friday!!! she is thrilled. we all are. i will know more details tomorrow and will update the blog. her count was only 1.4 today. however, she could still get to go home as she is a cord blood transplant and it takes the white blood cell count longer to rise in those cases.

i will keep you posted. thank you so much for all of your prayers!!!

god is good!!!
michelle

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

answered prayer

thank you for your prayers for melissa. she was actually able to eat today!!! praise the lord!!! she had some breakfast and a little lunch. we are so thankful!!! her nausea seems to be lessening. her count is holding between 1.3 and 1.4. she is back to walking her laps around the unit floor. woohoo!!! her doctors continue to be pleased with her progress. she wants to go home so badly. she asks that you continue to pray that her counts will rise and her strength will increase daily.

thanks to each of you.....
michelle