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Marek’s Story

Thank you for all of your support throughout Marek's journey. The benefit was a huge success, your presence and contributions meant so much. Thank you for showing us one of the best days of our lives, one we will never ever forget! Your prayers and outpouring of love, the meals brought to our doorstep, the kind and uplifting words, just reading my journal entries and in turn, sharing our tears of happiness and sadness, has been incredibly moving. We love each and every one of you more than words can describe.
Thank you.

Following a healthy pregnancy, the Stapleton family was blessed with a perfect miracle: baby Marek, born 12 days overdue following induction on July 30, 2012.  He instantly melted the hearts of his Mommy (Krissy), Daddy (Jason) and two big sisters, Hailee (6.5 yrs) and Piper (1.5 yrs).  24 hours after his birth we noticed a small enlarged area on the top of his tiny left foot.  

Concerned, we consulted copious amounts of doctors throughout the next six weeks of his life, bouncing from one referral to the next.  His diagnosis changed from a possible sprain resulting from delivery to a vascular malformation, but no one suspected the terrible news we received the night of September 19, 2012 - just seven weeks and one day after his birth.  

We were greeted in the recovery room at the Mayo Clinic shortly after Marek's biopsy with some sad news.  The pathology report had come back with a shocking diagnosis:  Our sweet baby Marek had a rare soft tissue cancer called Infantile Fibro Sarcoma (IFS).  This cancer effects roughly 7/1,000,000 infants (yes, you read that right)!  

We invite you to follow us through our journey of events and emotions including tests, treatment, surgery, love, anger, fear and courage with support, compassion and prayer.  We have a goal to remain honest and up front in regards to our feelings and experiences as we partake in this wild journey of treatment and healing with our sweet baby Marek.  

With so much love, 

The Stapleton Family

Latest Journal Update

Thankful Every Day!

In every photo of Marek while he was sick, I remember exactly where we were when the picture was taken, like it was yesterday. For example, in this picture, I remember walking through these giant automatic doors from the elevator into the parking ramp at Saint Mary's Hospital in Rochester. I remember he especially wasn't feeling well after this round of chemo and can recall the dim, orange lighting in the ramp. I wondered about his future, terrified, and would do whatever it took to cling tightly to everything about this memory, in that moment. 

These events may have occurred years ago, but they're still painfully vivid. Had I known what I know today I would have tried desperately not to remember. I would have done everything I could to forget, like Marek has. It doesn't get easier, these memories don't fade with time, like a printed photograph. They remain colorful and alive in my mind, and with them, the flood of emotions in which they associate. 

When things get hard in regular life, I remember these times and brush the ugly tears away. I stand up straight, get a grip, and remind myself, like a blow to the gut, what could have been. We have been blessed by so much abundant health and love. We have warmth when the weather gets cold and a family to share holidays with. Life is good, and this life is equally as beautiful as it is tragic. Today and everyday, I am thankful

Wishing everyone a safe and Happy Thanksgiving! 
With so much love,
The Stapletons

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5 Comentarios

Judy Kuester
By Judy Kuester
He is a sweet little boy. So glad that you could get the care needed. Grateful .
Tara Carlson
By Tara Carlson
He has grown to such a handsome three year old!!!

The fears and tears, those memories will probably never go away. I am reminded every time I look at Jacqueline, but I am thankful and SO incredibly grateful for her everyday.

I am also grateful for this site, as I've followed your story and it is the greatest treat to read good things!

Wishing you all a wonderful Thanksgiving!

hollie kennedy
By Hollie
Thank you for the reminder of how blessed life is. No matter how grown up Marek gets, he will always be my little super hero. May your family enjoy the blessings of a beautiful holiday season. Love to all
Michelle Farinella
By Michelle Farinella
Tears are not ugly, they are necessary and human. I'm so thankful you have so much to be thankful for. Happy holiday to you and Marek and the beautiful Stapleton fam! Love you - Micki
1 person hearted this
Robyn Berling
Krissy - I am so pleased to see Marek growing up! You and your family are so blessed to have had such wonderful medical care and the love and support of your family, friends and community. God has blessed you greatly! Enjoy this Thanksgiving and know that you are in my thoughts. Love, Robyn Prudhomme
1 person hearted this