On October 26th, 2010, at 9 weeks old, Phoebe Rose was diagnosed with high risk MLL + Infantile Leukemia. On November 18th 2015 , she took her last breath. This is her story of hope and love in the face of cancer and despair. Phoebe always brought the joy and continues to inspire us to make a difference. It is best read from the beginning. Thank-you for visiting.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Digging in the dirt

I am planting a garden.  And I am full of hope, that like my strong Phoebe Rose, these plants will grow and flourish.  It brings me a lot of peace to dig deep in the dirt, get my hands, knees and sometimes even my face dirty, and make this house more of a place that we would like to call home.  I like to read the description of the plant and for the ones that promise to bloom in the late summer or early fall, I like to imagine all of the things that we will be doing then.  Running through sprinklers, splashing in wading pools, getting Mae ready for school, watching leaves change colour, growing out of shoes and clothes - so many things.  As each month passes, I think of how far we have come, all of the obstacles that we have overcome and all that we have to look forward to.  

We are doing well.  For real this time.  In the past when I have written that we are "well", it was in relative terms.  Relative to whatever chemotherapy, infection, hospital stay, crisis or upheaval that may have been taking its toll on Phoebe and our family.  Today we are well.  We have overcome our first household cold and Phoebe appears to (knock on wood) have been the least affected.  She has a slight runny nose that has definitely not slowed her down.  To me this is a wonderful sign that this new and recovering immune system is doing its job.  It is working and that is simply incredible. 

Our next hospital visit is next week and it is a trip to Memphis.  I am excited but also anxious as this visit will include a chimerism test to make sure that Phoebe's blood still consists of only my cells.  I am choosing to focus on the fact that it will be okay rather than let my mind wander to places and thoughts full of worry.  Phoebe is thriving and what a better thing to focus on than that.  She is a bundle of joy and energy.  22 pounds of pure joy.   She is loving life, all of her new found freedom, and she has been practicing her walking and saying many new words.  I think she will be excited to show off these new skills and independence to her doctor and nurse friends at St. Jude.  

In other news - this weekend is a busy one.  On Saturday team "Phoebe Rose Rocks" will be taking part in the Great Glebe Garage Sale.  If you are in Ottawa and garage sales are your thing, or if you simply want to stroll around the Glebe, munching on delicious baked goods with a glass of lemonade in hand, then stop by 240 First Ave and look for the gold balloons.  All proceeds from the sale of said baked goods, lemonade and all kinds of treasures (toys, sporting goods, art, furniture, electronics, and many other finds) will go towards our fundraising efforts for the "Sears Relay to End Kids' Cancer".  We will also be collecting pennies, if you have been saving those for Phoebe and this important cause. That means that all money raised will go towards treatment and research of Children's Cancers in Ontario.  A win, win I think.  Shop, eat and cool off all for a good cause.

Sunday is the very important half marathon that I will be running for Candlelighters.  I am happy to say that I have now raised close to $1000 for this wonderful organization that has been a huge support for my family.  For more information on Candlelighters and all that they do, please visit.  www.candlelighters.net


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