Ryker’s Story

Site created on March 14, 2018

Our son, Ryker, was diagnosed with Leukemia on May 13th, 2018.  This page will allow us to share his story with our friends and family, but also gives us a place to put down our thoughts, struggles and prayers.   Our focus is to remain as positive as possible in light of this diagnosis and provide an environment for Ryker in which he will get heal and beat this disease.   Our smart, loving, kindhearted son who loves fire trucks, puzzles and reading  has been incredibly brave through this process.  Your continued thoughts and prayers are appreciated!

Newest Update

Journal entry by Erin Bowman

A year ago we received the most devastating news of our lives, but what came out of that news has been the biggest blessings we could have possibly imagined.  

There is not a day that goes by that I don't remember the feeling that came over me when I received the news that Ryker had Leukemia.  They were not words I could grasp for many reasons, but primarily because, who prepares to hear that their son has cancer?  I only could focus on doing whatever it took...so that is what I did. 

The past year has had it challenges for sure, but we have been so blessed with a better journey than most. We have received the support of our entire community, friends, family and even strangers.  There has never been a moment that Chris and I, or more importantly Ryker, have felt alone during this fight.  The best medicine that he receives daily is the love, support and prayers from each of you... I truly think it has made this little boy stronger, happier and better prepared to beat this.   

Ryker has recently entered into the Maintenance phase of his chemotherapy treatments.  This means that we have a once a month treatment at UCSF (way better than once a week), at home oral chemotherapy daily and a few additional medicines on the weekend.  Basically, the team of doctors have said the best course of treatment to ensure Ryker's Leukemia does not return, is to keep his immune system suppressed and treat him with low levels of medicine more often.  His next treatment is this Thursday at UCSF, where he looks forward (I mean that) to seeing his doctors and nurses.  He recently was very excited to make Valentine's and give one to each of them. We have been more than lucky to have a dedicated and phenomenal team of doctors, nurses and child life specialists to make sure Ryker is not only on the path to recovery, but doing so with a smile on his face.

Ryker's 4th birthday is quickly approaching - May 25th!  He is loving going to school with his friends and cousins, building whatever his imagination can make with legos, learning to write the alphabet and his name and lately trying his best to ride his bike.  Singing and dancing are a must daily, as he likes to get his "sillies" out - Ms. Shauna at school has really given him a passion for music.  His cousins, Tristan & Addie, keep him on his toes and they have a bundle of fun together whether they are throwing snowballs, picking veggies or just beating up on each other.  He is growing up fast, using complete sentences, please and thank you's and, of course, pointing out everything Chris and I do wrong - we can't get away with anything anymore!

As I mentioned above, we didn't know what this year was going to be like for us, but I can honestly say we have taken it in stride, tried to make the most of it and found countless blessings along the way.
Going through every scary, painful and gut-wrenching moment together - we have grown as a family. 
Being brave, strong and resilient through it all - Ryker has grown into a big boy.
Supporting, encouraging, loving unconditionally - Chris has grown as a father and husband.
Being present, finding balance and taking a breath - I have grown as a mom and wife.

One year down - two to go! #rykerstrong #weloveyouall
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