Thursday, January 10, 2013

A Year Ago Today


This time a year ago, life was good.   We had our normal concerns (including why Spence was so pale and low on energy), but for the most part we were a normal busy family. A few hours later, our pediatrician called and dropped the unexpected bombshell that would change our lives forever.  Little could we imagine in those first horrible moments after hearing the word, "Leukemia," the journey that we were about to  embark on.  A journey that would include some of the darkest, most fearful moments of our lives.  And at the other end of the spectrum, a journey of more kindness and generosity being heaped upon us that we could have ever imagined. 

Here's a little glimpse of that journey:
  • 118 nights in the hospital
  • Developed and/or discovered allergies to 5 different kinds of medications, including 2 classes of antibiotics (penicillin and sulfa)
  • 4 rounds of intensive chemo
  • 2 bouts with the dreaded stomach infection c-diff, which meant isolation in the hospital room
  • More medications than the rest of our entire family (and probably our extended families) combined have taken in our lifetimes
  • Unexplained chest pain
  • Weeks of having no immune system
  • Five months of being hairless,  often even without eyebrows or leg hair
  • Lost 40 lbs.  (most of which he so kindly transplanted  straight to my belly and hips)
  • Countless blood and platelet transfusions
  • Buckets of tears and worry that still haven't ended

Although I would never, ever, ever want to relive this past year, I would be remiss if I didn't also list a few of the many blessings that were poured out on our family during those months.    They were every bit as part of the experience as were the negatives. 

  • Fresh homecooked meals brought to our family every-other-day for 18+ weeks
  • Friends that left their house extra early and drove out of the way  every single day to pick up Cami for early morning seminary
  • Long lost friends and relatives who used Spencer's sickness as an opportunity to get in touch with us after many years
  • A housecleaner paid for by friends who came every-other-week ( I miss this)
  • Dozens and dozens of people who took time out of their busy schedule (often on a weekly basis) to visit Spence in the hospital
  • Increased faith in God's individual love for His children
  • 3 of our 5 kids who have changed their ideal future careers to something in the medical field
  • Caring docs and nurses, who not only took care of him around the clock, but also answered our gazillions of questions and made us feel important and loved
  • Hundreds of people around the world who prayed daily for Spencer and our family
  • Celebrating seven months in remission

I find myself woefully short on the right words to say today, but on this year anniversary of the day of his diagnosis, I just wanted to pause and express our deep gratitude for all that you have done to support our family this year.  That support has meant the world to us. 


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4 comments:

Candice.kulbeth@gmail.com said...

Happy Health-aversary! I hope you're doing something fun to celebrate.

Cassie Thompson said...

Wow, a year! What a milestone.

K said...

I can't tell you how happy I am that Spencer is healthy!! May 2013 be a wonderful and relaxing year for the Goold family!!

Shelley said...

I am always impressed by your optimism and ability to recognize the good amidst the trial you have faced/are facing. Thanks for sharing!

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