What started as a vision screen by Darrell's eye doctor less than a year and a half ago became a shocking diagnosis of Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML). Due to miraculous advances in medicine, with some initial intervention and lots of rest, Darrell was able to control the CML with a chemo pill.
Then, in September-just 9 months later, Nikki (Darrell's wife) was diagnosed with breast cancer. Very shortly after, she had a lumpectomy and a biopsy and then began chemotherapy treatments. As I write this, Nikki continues with her own cancer treatment plan while supporting her husband in his fight.
Recently, Darrell had a strange episode and was rushed to a Twin Cities hospital with what was presenting like a stroke, but was later determined to be a seizure related to his CML. After another episode, Darrell was taken to Mayo Clinic in Rochester this past weekend. It was determined that the leukemia had morphed into another type, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). It was further determined that the leukemia had crossed the blood-brain barrier and invaded Darrell's central nervous system.
He has since been in-hospital in Rochester, and will continue to be for the foreseeable future as he receives aggressive chemotherapy treatments. He'll go through 8 rounds of treatments, each lasting 4-6 weeks. Each week will involve one chemotherapy through a PICC line and another injected directly into his spinal fluids on alternating days, 5 days a week. The hope is to get him into remission so that he will be able to qualify for and receive a bone marrow transplant either this year or the first part of next year. Needless to say, he's got a long, hard road ahead of him. Fortunately, he's both strong and optimistic by nature! (Since Darrell's first hospital stay for his initial CML diagnosis, he has had the motto: "I am Iron Man!")
Darrell and Nikki have 2 incredible children, a daughter in college and a son in high school. Needless to say, the 4 of them have been through the wringer, yet they have remained strong, united against cancer in all its nasty forms.
Until now, Darrell and Nikki have not sought financial support from the community; however, this latest life-changing-moment has created an urgency amongst those of us who love them to rally-hard-around them and invite the community to do the same. Nikki has been staying in Rochester to be by Darrell's side, as have their children. The kids continue to commute back-and-forth as they juggle school and work commitments and care of the house and dog while spending as much time as they can in Rochester with their parents.
I set the financial goal high for this GoFundMe, and frankly, I considered setting it higher. Why? Because there's a lot we CAN'T do to change the battle that they're fighting (and if we could, we would!), but there are a few things we CAN do.
1. We can pray. HARD. We can pray for miraculous healing, for peace that surpasses all understanding, for strength, for grace, for wisdom for his care team... We can pray against cancer and in alignment with total restoration of every cell in both of their bodies.
2. The purpose of this GoFundMe, we can help to eliminate every financial burden possible, whether medical, lodging, food, travel, loss of work, day-to-day living, mortgage, school-related expenses...so that in the midst of the fight of their lives, the Meyers can focus on rallying together, as they do, while we rally around them, as we will, for as long as it takes, for whatever they need. https://www.gofundme.com/meyerscancerfund
(Please note that for the time being, Darrell needs to limit his visitors to healthy family members, and only with advance approval. While I know the family appreciates your love and support, these restrictions were put in place for his protection. Thank you for understanding!)
(Note that aside from any fees collected by GoFundMe, ALL money raised through this fundraiser will go directly to Darrell, Nikki, and their children to use in any manner that relieves stress from their lives in this season.)