Welcome to our CaringBridge site for Megan. It has been created to keep friends and family updated Megan, and her fight against Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). Be sure to read the latest in the journal, view the photo gallery, and drop us a line in the guestbook.
A video of pictures from Megan's first 20 months of treatment.
The story of how we got Megan's diagnosis is that she was sort of flu like for about 2 weeks. But a few days or so into it, she had an issue with her elbow, seemingly unrelated, but it had to be popped back into place. Her arm never really seemed to get better, although she mainly complained about pain in her shoulder after that, which seemed odd. Then on a Saturday she woke up not able to walk, complaining about her left knee. We took her to a family practice near our house (but not our regular pediatrician), they took a strep test that turned out to be positive. Sometimes strep can cause joint pain, so we were hoping it was just that. The next Monday we took her to her pediatrician as well as an orthopedist for her knee. They both said to just keep an eye on the fever and the knee pain. By Wednesday (11/1) she still had a fever and joint pain, even though she had been on antibiotics. Her pediatrician recommended we go to the local emergency room for sort of "one stop shopping", blood test, urine test etc.. That is when we first got the awful news that Megan had Leukemia. We were in Children's Hospital in DC for 3 weeks (except for one quick overnight at home when we returned to hospital because of fever).
Although this is the most awful news we have ever received we know our Megan will beat this cancer and live a long, happy life! We have wonderful support from all of our family and friends and of course Megan's big brother and sister, Drew and Jessica.
This time of year always gets me thinking...It's right about now Megan was diagnosed, 6 years ago, on November 1, 2006. In some ways it seems like a lifetime ago and other ways it seems like yesterday. I remember Halloween 6 years ago, Megan was laying on the couch unable to walk, except for a few steps at a time. She was so sick that she wasn't even that upset about missing Halloween. I knew something was wrong, I just didn't know how wrong it really was. Now tonight, she's out and about trick or treating! She just came back to dump her bag and go out for more. :) It so great to see her happy and having fun.
She's in fourth grade this year and having a fabulous year! She loves her teacher, is having fun with friends and is learning to be ok with the fact that some things take her a little longer to pick up on than other kids. She gets frustrated sometimes, but she's learning how to deal with it. This is truly the best start to a school year we've ever had for her. I am so relieved.
She is doing well health wise too. She had her clinic check up in August, and obviously all was well, or else you would have heard. Turns out we should have really been on an every 4 month schedule this year instead of 6 month checks, so we'll make one up in the end of November and then go again in February. Next year will truly be the every 6 month check ups. She was sick with a sore throat and low grade fever last week, but it came and went and she's back to school this week.
Megan continues to want to help raise awareness for pediatric cancers and leukemia too. This fall we walked again for CureSearch and had lots of our friends come out to support us to help raise funds and awareness. We had a beautiful day and it was lots of fun. In the coming months she will also be a "honored hero" for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Pennies for Patients program here in Montgomery County. This means that Megan's face will be on posters all over elementary and middle schools in the area. :) She'll occasionally be asked to write thank you's or come to some fundraising events at different schools in the area. Megan really enjoys doing these things. I always make sure she understands she can absolutely say no when we are asked to do things like this. But, she truly wants to do it. She has a big heart and really wants to help.
Jessie and Drew are doing great too. Drew is really liking his Freshman year of high school and is doing great. Jessie is loving her Senior year, is working at Ben and Jerry's and will finish up applying to colleges by this weekend! I wish time could slow down a little.
Ethan and I are doing well too. Ethan just completed his 3rd marathon this past weekend! He ran the Marine Corp Marathon again and raised lots of money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society! Go Ethan!! :) I don't know how he does it! We were lucky that Hurricane Sandy held off until Monday, and he wasn't running through that. As for me, I actually went back to work last week. I was never able to really be happy staying home. I needed to get back to work. I went back to Fannie working for some really good people who I've known at Fannie a very long time. Staying home definitely had its advantages, especially when kids are sick or on vacation, but those few days a year didn't balance out the rest of it. I was too bored most of the time!
I hope that all of you are doing well. Especially those of you on the East coast after the storm. I pray you are all safe and well, and that your power is on!
Thanks for reading, if I don't check in again before the end of the year, I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season!