Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place.
In early 2014, Naomi was diagnosed and subsequently treated for early stage breast cancer. Thankfully, through very aggressive surgery, she was able to be considered cancer-free. These last 5 years she has been striving to reclaim her health.
In March 2019 our son, Jack, began to suffer from very acute and intense emotional and psychological outbursts. Through a very unique but effective brain scanning process and assessment called SPECT at the Amen Clinic in Atlanta, Jack was identified to have overactive areas of his brain that were determined to be a key cause of his struggles. He was immediately put on (and continues still) a specific supplement regimen designed to calm the overactive areas of his brain. To further pursue the underlying causes for this overactivity, Jack is being treated by an integrative physician who has ordered several specific and wide-ranging tests. Through this testing it has been determined that Jack suffers from several underlying infections that are the root cause of what he is dealing with. Currently Jack has tested positive for Micorplasma Pneumonia, mold exposure, PANS/PANDAS, and 2 different strains of Lyme disease (Borrelia Burgdorferi and Relapsing Fever Burgdorferi). Due to these additional diagnosis Jack has been placed on an herbal supplement regimen to target these infections. With the Amen Clinics being a private and out-of-network treatment facility, all costs for consultation, testing, treatment, and continued care are all currently direct out-of-pocket expenses.
Caring for Jack and implementing the new supplement and specific nutrition guidelines has been a mental and emotional endeavor all on its own. However, over this last year beginning in June of 2018, Naomi began to suffer from a variety of health issues that began with pain in her wrists and over time grew to include pain in her hips, swelling of her glands near her throat, difficulty swallowing, digestive issues, and what was ultimately diagnosed as carpel tunnel in her hands and wrists. These symptoms have continued to increase in intensity and scope of their impact on her health and ability to get through each day without spending most of her time resting in bed due to fatigue and nausea. Throughout this past year Naomi has seen and followed up with numerous physicians for everything from some skin pigmentation changes that occurred to her throat issues/difficulty swallowing to the increasing pain in her wrists which eventually progressed to the point where she was unable to open her hands fully or even squeeze tight enough to open a bottle. She underwent several procedures including a colonoscopy, endoscopy, carpel tunnel surgery, and a battery of blood tests from multiple physicians. As time progressed, more and more of the physicians began to tell her that all her tests came back as normal for the most part and they couldn't figure out what was causing all the problems. Eventually Naomi began to suffer from heart arrhythmia that would come and go until in May she was hospitalized for several days due to a racing heartbeat that would not slow down. The eventual diagnosis after the hospitalization and two subsequent at-home multiple-day heart rate monitoring tests was likely SVT which could only be corrected through a heart ablation procedure.
At a recent follow-up with the oncologist in July, it was finally determined that a blood marrow biopsy should be performed since all other tests were negative for any condition which would explain her variety of symptoms which had become so debilitating to her every day life. One week later on August 1st, 2019 the oncologist delivered the results of the bone marrow biopsy which ultimately identified that Naomi has Multiple Myeloma, a very rare form of bone marrow cancer. Further testing revealed that she was also suffering from a resulting condition called amyloidosis (which occurs when a substance called amyloid builds up in your organs. Amyloid is an abnormal protein that is produced in your bone marrow and can be deposited in any tissue or organ) which by current medical understanding is incurable except in rare circumstances where if the cancer is stopped and ceases the production of the amyloids then the body may be able to break down the build-up and restore normal function of the organ. Naomi was immediately admitted to the hospital to begin her targeted chemotherapy treatment as well as receive IV nutrition due to significant and sudden weight loss that had occurred over the preceding two months, which was ultimately determined to be caused by amyloid buildup in the digestive tract thereby inhibiting her body's ability to absorb nutrients. After just over a week in the hospital and undergoing several additional tests on her heart, Naomi was released to come home and continue her battle as an outpatient.
Current treatment will now included nightly, 12-hour IV nutrition as well as taking daily prescription medications in addition to her twice weekly chemotherapy injections. To add to the challenge now facing the family, the homeschooling year has begun for all three of the Hathaway children.
In order to create a peaceful, healthy, and stress-free environment for her battle and recovery (as well as the continued recovery for Jack's health concerns), the family will be needing to make several major improvements in the home. This will include repainting the common rooms, replacing the current carpet and tile flooring in the common areas of the home with a wood laminate as well as replacing the current traditional shower in the master bathroom with a stand-up version that is easier to enter/exit and maintain.
Throughout this process the family has committed to honoring God as they walk this path together. They are committed to trusting in His goodness and provision for all their health, financial, and emotional needs during this time. Naomi's current treatment is scheduled to last for 12 weeks, at which time her progress will be evaluated and the next steps determined from there.
We will continue to update Naomi's journey as well as that of our family as a whole. For those who'd like to support us, here are the most effective and practical ways in which you can do so:
1) Prayer. We firmly believe in the ability of the creator of all things to be bigger than any illness or obstacle we may face. We trust in His faithfulness to walk with us along this journey. In the end our aim is to glorify Him. Should you so choose to pray to the Lord God Almighty on our behalf, we gladly accept that with humble and heartfelt appreciation. To have brothers and sisters in the family of the faith come alongside us is the greatest gift you could provide.
2) Time and Talents. As we prepare to update and improve the necessary areas of our home we will seek to do so as economically as possible. The health costs of treatments for Jack and Naomi this year have had a significant impact on the family's financial situation and the cost to make these home improvements will not be light. If you have knowledge and experience in removing and laying flooring and/or plumbing expertise for the removal and installation of the shower and would be willing to help in making these updates a reality that would be amazing! Not expected of course, because if the Lord is with us in this desire He will make a way. Naomi will also be having regular doctor appointments in Savannah and could benefit from those who have the available time and a desire to take her and bring her home.
3) Freezer meals or gift cards for food or gas. Obviously, Naomi will be unable to take on the brunt of responsibility for food preparation for the children during the day and the family in the evenings. Jonathan is working full-time to continue his best effort to provide financially for the family. Evenings times or arriving home and preparing dinner while also seeking to adequately care for Naomi and help her can easily feel overwhelming. Having food available to heat up or the ability to stop and get something on the way home is such a relief for the parents and the kids. Due to Jack's diagnosis as well as peanut/tree nut allergy and gluten sensitivity, the number of options for restaurant prepared food is limited. In addition, Naomi will have regular doctor appointments weekly for chemotherapy as well as follow up appointments with the other physicians she is seeing including her cardiologist and gastroenterologist. A meal train has been set up at the following link: https://www.mealtrain.com/trains/m1392l
4) Financial support. We know that in this day and age, most families are taxed financially so we in no way expect financial contribution. We do know however that some people want to give in this way and so if the Lord leads you in that conviction we do not want to be a hindrance. Any direct financial support we receive will go towards the medical costs incurred for Naomi and Jack's continued care and treatment on their journeys to recovery and better health, and toward helping provide the clean and stress-free home for rest and recovery. Click on "Ways to Help" for the GoFundMe link.
We only provide these options as a way of expressing the greatest needs we have during this time, but with no expectation upon those of you following our journey and supporting our family. It means so much that you are here and supporting us at this time. As mentioned above, the greatest thing we covet is your prayer to the great I AM on our behalf. We know Jesus Christ intercedes on our behalf to the Father, that He cares for us more than we can fathom, and that He is good.
We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting. Please continue to follow Naomi and our family's journey.