Today marks 2 years since Lauren left the hospital. It will always be a day of celebration to our family. It would be wonderful to say she is cancer free and we continue to hope for a cure for Acute Myelocytic Leukemia. We will still continue to be thankful that she is in remission.
She is currently sick and running a fever. She came back from her school trip from Washington DC on the 2nd because she had intense pain in her right ear. I took her straight to the emergency room where she was quickly diagnosed with an ear infection. I say quickly because it was nothing like our overnight and all day ordeal in Scottsdale. I love Children's Hospital. They continue to be so good to us. When she checked in they immediately recognized her name. The nurse reminisced with Lolo about the day the snow angels came on a winter day to cheer her up outside her hospital window. They gave her pain medication, got her antiobiotics and we were on our way. She has been down for the count since. I hope she recovers fast because we have a "girl's trip" planned this weekend to head to Denver. We are going to see a bunch of my high school friends and also Ashley & Kurt and baby William! We are very excited.
To celebrate Lauren being out of the hospital, we are having a blood drive at St Margaret Mary's Church on June 13th from 0800-2. I will post a better description later today. We still need 20 more people to sign up. Phil and I are determined to give blood every December (when she was diagnosed) and every June (when she left the hospital) in order to keep gratitude in our hearts for all the people that kept Lo alive by donating. She would not have made it without these donations. They are so important. Our friends, the Fangmans, feel this way too. This blood drive is in honor of Lolo and their son, Ollie, who is finally also done with his treatment. Thank you so much for your prayers and support of Ollie! He is such a doll and is doing very well after all he has been through. Our little friend, Cooper DeWitt, is also finally done with his treatment for leukemia. Thank you for praying for Cooper. Our little friend, Emma, however, is still fighting. She just turned 3 last week and is starting another round of chemo to fight her persistent and growing brain tumor. It is frustrating and heartbreaking to see her have to continue this grueling treatment for so long. Our friends, Brent & Kathryn Gehring continue to be positive and hopeful. They are such fantastic parents. #Emmastrong
Today is also the anniversary of the ordination day of our priest, Father Weeder. He will be leaving for another parish at the end of the month. It is no surprise to me that his ordination anniversary is the same day that Lolo left the hospital. Without his help throughout Lolo's treatment, I would have continued to live in fear instead of hope. He continues to be a dear friend to Lolo and our family. We are so lucky he chose to be a priest and we are blessed that he was there by our side to teach us how to live in the light instead of the darkness.
Tonight, we get to pick Jonathan up from his school trip to France and Spain. He has been gone for 10 days and I haven't heard one word from him on how he is doing. My guess is that means he is having a ton of fun. He continues to make me laugh so hard my face hurts. He just finished his sophomore year at Prep. He has two jobs for the summer, caddying at Omaha Country Club and hosting at 7M. So, if you are in the mood to give a high school kid a good tip, step out to 7M or if you golf at OCC, he is excited use his new distance gadget to help you get to the green.
This summer we will go to Fairchild AFB for a B52 reunion. We are so excited to see old friends and return to Spokane, Washington. We will be taking the kids to our favorite haunts in Spokane, including Clinkerdaggers Restaurant on the Spokane River where Phil proposed to me on Christmas Eve in 1987. It will be fun to share memories with our kids from when we were young and fun. We are travelling up through Montana on our way there. On our return we are doing our favorite thing as a family.....heading to a National Park and do some hiking. We are hitting Glacier National Park for 3 days and then heading to the Lolo National Forest for group hike and camping expedition. I had no idea only a couple of hours from where I was born is a forest called Lolo...I guess that makes a lot of sense. It almost feels like we are a normal family again....almost!
Please continue to keep Lolo in your prayers. It is 2 years now that she has been in remission. I can hardly believe it. She is swimming on her swim team at Field Club and still playing volleyball with Elite in Omaha. She is still a ray of sunshine to everyone (except her irritating mom, of course). She is looking forward to 8th grade at SMM. She has very nice and thoughtful friends that she enjoys. I think the only thing that could make her life more complete is if we find a cure for leukemia. It is possible. It might be time to be a bigger part of this solution. In the meantime, if you can, please come donate some blood or encourage someone you know to do so. We would really appreciate it!