Hi and thanks for taking the time to read this special request.
Our daughter Kamilah has always been a healthy vibrant child, full of life and great personality, but on Friday, April 8th, 2016 she was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) Type-B. She was admitted to the Mclane Children's Hospital In Temple, TX around midnight and treatments started soon after.
Before all this happened, as parents we never had a clue that she may have cancer, or any other illness living inside of her little body, as she was always happy and bouncy. We did notice she was tired a few times and had a few bruises from playing but nothing alarming. So when the news was delivered, we were in shock and couldn’t believe what we were told at the ER.
While at the hospital, Kamilah has been receiving intensive care, she was also treated for some vaccines she received early on, as part of her 4-year-old checkup. Because her counts were so low at the time of arrival, the Infections Disease team acted quickly and neutralized those 4 vaccines, DTaP, IPV, MMR and Varicella before they could manifest in her body. Kamilah then received antibodies and antiviral medicine, as of now she still taking the antiviral for at least 21 days (incubation period), we have not seen any signs of the vaccines reacting in her body, which is a good thing and hope it stays that way.
Day #1 of chemo
This was rough; this is usually the first day of chemotherapy and the overwhelming drugs that come with it. Her tiny body went through a bone marrow procedure, lumbar puncture and the first round of chemo medicine. Recovery was not fun, she was very sore and in pain, she received some pain medicine later on and she was able to cope and felt much better after all. We had a few ups and downs, tantrums but nothing major, her body reacted well to the medicines and as of then, the roadmap was a go.
Day #8 of chemo
on this day, her procedures went much better, less drama and panicking. She received another dose of chemo and another LP on her back. My many thanks to the anesthesiologist and her team, they did a wonderful job, relaxing and putting Kamilah to sleep without any complications, her procedure lasted around 25 minutes but, to me it felt like hours, just waiting, crying, bitching and complaining, YES! That’s me and no shame on it either, I was just upset that I have to see my daughter go through this, I always ask myself why her?
She recovered fast from this one, she coughed a few times while at the recovery unit, sat up and drank some Gatorade and then ate crackers! How did she pull this off? I don’t know, she is just a strong little girl. We then headed back upstairs and got 2 more chemo medicines and no reactions! Yes! I was so scared, the night before I couldn’t stop reading about methotrexate and all the side effects. Now I have learned, to read and know the side effects for most of her chemo meds but don’t get worked up over it.
Day 10 =)
We are now on day 10th! And got discharged last night, after a few back and forths, we were able to come home and picked up where we left off. Kamilah did great last night and we all got some rest. As a mom, I kept waking up to see if she was hot, if she had a fever, or if she was breathing. Kamilah used to snore badly but since she got put on steroids (another medicine part of the cancer regimen) she no longer snores, and it's creepy! We used to hear her snore all night and we know she was ok, but now is like all new getting adjusted to her being silent at night.
We were in the hospital from April 8 until April 20th, my husband and I developed a plan in which one of us will come home and be with our other child named Dylan. As a big brother, Dylan didn’t know what was happening to his sister, but we were able to talk to him and explained in simple terms, that Kamilah was going to be at the hospital for a little bit until she felt better. Being away from home was rough, switching days and driving 45 miles each way was nerve wrecking but we made it through. We facetime all the time and we were able to keep the kids engaged.
Cancer was the last thing I could even think it will hit my family, it has been so hard to assimilate the news and deal with the blood work, the poking around on her arms (I think it took like 5 times to get it right), the procedures, the medicines she hates to take, the vitals at 4am, seeing my daughter put to sleep! It just takes a toll on your mind and your body.
As of now, I am on FMLA (leave from work) and my spouse dropped from school so we can be by her bedside and also our child. I will be returning to work soon after, all this is settled, and I know the first 5 weeks of chemo are over and then some more. Kamilah will continue to get her treatments every month and even during the maintenance phase (the treatment is 2.8 years so we have a long road ahead of us, but the toughest is yet to come).
Before I go back to work and my husband back to school, I need to get my head straight and allow myself to heal and stop blaming myself for what happened to Kamilah; since a few of my uncles had died from cancer, I thought “well it’s all my fault! Dammit!!! why?” but is not, nothing could have ever stop what happened to my child and we must learn to deal with it, and live a “normal” life.
Telling our story on here isn’t easy, it was so hard for me to ask for help from anyone, but a couple of neighbors and a few friends told me “you can’t do this alone, you need people to help and people want to help Kamilah, please allow them to be part of it, let any pride or anything you were taught behind and allow your family, friends and the community to help”.
The purpose of this fundraiser is to help with medical cost our insurance won’t cover until we meet our cap for the year. We have to pay several of Kamilah’s medical needs on credit because we simply didn’t have the money to pay for any of this (I mean, who puts aside money for when your kids get cancer…NOBODY!!!!). Between her medications (which were pretty costly like 5 different ones), the driving to and back the Children’s hospital in Temple (45 miles each way), the co-pays for medical supplies, the meals at the hospital, we have spent quite a bit and mostly on credit cards.
Any help would be gladly appreciated at this time and thank you all.
We could use the following items:
Monetary donations on go-fund-me or PayPal (lilci83-yahoo) Gift cards to HEB for food Gas cards Cleaning supplies for the home