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Thanks for stopping by!  Gregory is four years old and undergoing an Odyssey with  Juvenile Myelomonocytic Leukemia.  JMML is an extremely rare leukemia, which affects Gregory's production of healthy platelets, red cells and white cells.  Basically his entire blood producing system.  Our Odyssey began on February 23rd when he was admitted for flu symptoms and dehydration.  We are currently in Seattle, WA under the care of Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA).  Gregory's only course of treatment is a Bone Marrow Transplant, also known as a Hemotopoietic Stem Cell Transplant (HSCT).  On April 21st we received that magic phone call, notifying us of a perfect 10/10 transplant match.  We arrived in Seattle on Monday, May 11. We were admitted to Seattle Children's on Monday June 1, to begin pre-transplant conditioning.  (AKA:  Heavy Duty Chemo).  Gregory's transplant began at 4:10am on Thursday June 11, 2009.  We were discharged after nine long/short weeks.  We are out-patient in Seattle and hope to be HomeHome by the end of September.  After a minor set-back, we were able to return to the Spokane area on Sunday, October 11.  Gregory and I are staying at our family's place on the water, for a few weeks.  The house is not quite ready and we want to be sure that the siblings are well.  We will be returning home, soon.

Whew!  We finally moved back HomeHome in August of 2010.  Gregory is still undergoing treatment for Graft Versus Host and this could continue for years to come.  Trying to teach his new Immune System to not destroy his body.

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I am also on FaceBook (Mindi Finch) and Twitter (MagnificentMndi) .  Sometimes brief updates are available there, before they make it to my LiveJournal.  My LiveJournal Twitter Feed can be found here:  magnificentwit 


Thank you to everyone who has/will touch our lives.  Everyone of you will forever be a part of our families history. 


The Odyssey Thus Far from MindiTheMagnificent on Vimeo.
mindithemagnificent. Get yours at bighugelabs.com/flickr

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(Anonymous)
May. 10th, 2009 04:48 am (UTC)
Mindi,
Carrie Horton mentioned your story to me and told me you were coming to Seattle for a BMT. My daughter Maddy (age 7) and I are at Seattle Children’s right now. She had her transplant on April 23. I just read about your story – you are a beautiful writer – and I can relate to so many of the feelings you so eloquently describe. Fear of the unknown, profound gratefulness toward your donor, appreciation for the simplicities in your life (your OfffSpring blanket) and the questioning of “how did we end up here”. I am so thrilled you found a perfect match donor – the BEST possible situation!

I can’t say enough great things about the team here. I feel like we are in such good hands (afterall bone marrow transplants were pioneered here and studies have shown this is the NUMBER ONE place to be in the entire world for a BMT). So far things have gone pretty smooth for Maddy. She had a similar conditioning regimen as Gregory – except for the Melphalin – and she tolerated it very well. Her counts started coming in on Day 14 post transplant and we may be able to leave the hospital on Day 25 – a week from Monday. So far (knock on wood) we haven’t experienced much noticeable GVHD.

You sound like you have an amazing family and a wonderful support system (who will no doubt be lifting you up even if they are far away). My biggest advice for surviving a long stay in the hospital – Skype. It’s a great way to stay in touch with your family and for all of the kids to see each other and continue to act silly with each other. The televisions here aren’t the best (and ours is usually on Disney Channel) so if you have an iPod where you can rent movies and favorite TV shows it will help the time pass. You will also be happy to know there is a knitting group that comes to the SCCA floor each week.

You and your entire family are in my prayers. Although the next month will be difficult, each day that passes you are one day closer to putting this chapter behind you. Please let me know if you have any questions as you start the next step in your Odyssey or if you would like to meet for a cup of coffee.

Warmly,

Susan Callahan
susan@chambordcommunications.com


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