Adam's ANC is FINALLY climbing!! Monday it broke the 100's with 110. Yesterday it skipped up to 140, and today it climbed up to 232. His appetite and energy are returning and with them come the smiles. He is also starting to ask to go outside. Good thing we are almost at 500. He won't have to wait too long.
...Adam has an ANC! The doctor's said they expected to see something either yesterday or today-- and they were right. I have to admit, I was a little more skeptical, but, here it is. Adam's ANC was 20 yesterday and it's 30 today. His counts are coming back! It's still early to get really excited, but as each day passes and his counts continue to go up, we expect our optimism to grow as well. Hopefully in the next few days, we will have a better idea of what to expect as far as how long we will have to be here. But until then, we take our small victories where we can get 'em!!
Today we celebrate Adam's third birthday. Looking back on the last year and a half since diagnosis, we consider ourselves blessed beyond measure to have reached this point at all. May we thank you, our friends, family and many we don't even know, for your support, faith and prayers. It is your constant care that makes our task more tolerable.
We also wish to thank our medical team who have worked, and continue to work, so hard in pursuit of Adam's cure. Everyday we feel the investment they make in Adam and words will never be able to express how thankful we are for their dedication.
And finally, we humbly acknowledge our Heavenly Father's hand in the miracles that have taken place on our behalf. He has been with us every step of the way.
I think the medicine induced disorientation has finally subsided. Although, I am still pretty tired. But, almost a week later, Adam and I are doing okay. Adam is struggling to eat enough, but otherwise seems to be doing well. He did have an NG tube placed so they could supplement his nutritional needs and it's proving to be more difficult then we would like. The supplement is something akin to baby formula and Adam's gut does not like it. So we keep trying.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, transplant day went very well. I was in surgery about three hours and then it took about four hours for the marrow to infuse. Now with a few days between us and transplant day, I am amazed at not only what modern medicine is capable of, but what the human body can do. We were told that just hours after the infusion, the hemopoietic stem cells had migrated into Adam's bone marrow and begun to set up shop. I am fascinated by the fact that cells that don't belong to Adam know where to go and what to do. It will be a several days before we see any signs of engraftment, but so far, things have gone very well.
From the donor's perspective, it's quite an experience. I still hurt, but it's just tenderness rather then aching. My throat is still pretty scratchy from the breathing tube, but that seems to be getting better as well. It's been a while since I've had surgery and the recovery is harder than I remember. On the bright side, they were able to extract about nine ounces of bone marrow from the back of my hips and the doctors were pretty happy with the quality and sample size of the marrow they pulled. It is encouraging to hear the contentment in their voices as they talk about the process and what it could mean for the eventual outcome.
Now that transplant is complete, we just wait for counts to recover. We pray there will be minimal complications and that Adam will have a speedy recovery. All in all, we are hanging in there. Adam is my champion and continues to amaze me with his submissive patience and cooperation even when he doesn't understand why we can't go home.
Adam the day of transplant. If you look at the bottom of the picture just above the "D" in "ADAM," you can see the bone marrow transfusing through his line which is wrapping around his leg.
It's over...Adam did great...and I hurt. I couldn't be more satisfied with the outcome! I was told I was in surgery for about three hours. The bone marrow harvest went well and Adam was receiving his infusion before I even came out of recovery. They gave me a room right next to Adam, so as soon as I was able, I went back to Adam's room and had the opportunity to see my bone marrow going into Adam. I am not quite sure I have been able to wrap my mind around this whole thing yet. Of course, I'm still pretty foggy from all the medication, but trust that when it wears off and I can think straight, I will get a better grip on what has just taken place. There will certainly be more on this later. Stay tuned...
We are almost finished with the conditioning therapy required for transplant and I am amazed anyone lives through it. Adam has been a little trooper, but this chemo is, by far, the worst he's ever had. For the most part, he's been okay, but he has had way more breakthrough nausea and vomiting during this round then before. And from what Mark reports, he's feeling pretty lousy. As of this writing, Adam only has one more dose to go and then he is finished. Hopefully forever!!! That said, the doctors have been extremely pleased with how Adam has handled it thus far. We still have a few ugly things ahead of us, but I am always thankful when the chemo is done.