On Thursday, September 6, Nikolai went in for increased bruising. It seemed he was bruising more than usual, and we could no longer justify a playful young boy that enjoyed jumping, playing Legos, and running around! He had swollen lymph nodes and knees that hurt.
We scheduled an appointment with the nurse practitioner and his pediatrician soon came in with her. Nikolai was diagnosed with leukemia; because Nikolai’s white count was so high we needed to head straight to Children’s; because he was at risk for stroke.
They were expecting us, and the staff has been wonderful. We soon met with the oncologist. He has been diagnosed with High Risk Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (HR B-ALL). She says if we were to pick one this would be it. We are currently in the ICU. It’s been a long day. Niko has had blood work, chest x-ray, echo, EKG, and antibiotics, platelets, and other medications.
He will have a long day ahead of him tomorrow as he will get a central line placed, bone marrow biopsy, and lumbar puncture and begin chemotherapy.
We are aware that we have a tough road ahead, but I don’t think it has sunk in entirely. Niko has been such a champ through this whole thing and it’s just so much for his 4-year-old body and mind to go through and understand. The irony is that even with it he worries about the fact that his siblings and cousin are upset and worried and doesn’t want them to be.
It’s day one. Niko knows he’s got some bad guy legos in his blood and he needs some more good guy legos.