Wednesday, December 30, 2009

4th Week Postponed ... Sigh of Relief

Once again, we arrived at clinic hoping Colin would be able to begin his next round of treatment. Once again, his ANC was not high enough. He was at 286 and needs to be at least 750. As he has now gone this long with low counts, he had a bone marrow aspiration. The nurse practitioner who performed the procedure was fantastic. Given the holiday season, results from the tests may haven taken up to 24 hrs to prepare. However, she walked the test down to lab and called us later in the day with the results. The results did not indicate any presence of leukemia cells. Needless to say, we had a huge sigh of relief.

Colin has also been on a 3 day per week cycle of an antibiotic to prevent a type of pneumonia since his diagnosis. However, the antibiotic is known to cause marrow suppression (resulting in low ANC) in some. We will take him off this antibiotic and start a new type in hope that this may help his counts. SO....Back to the regularly scheduled program next week ... treatment on Thursday as long as Colin's counts have rebounded. Let's all pray for a good week and a happy healthy new year!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Merry Christmas!

We started the holiday weekend off by celebrating Christmas Eve with our siblings. We shared our lobster eve tradition by cooking 7 lobsters and steak for all. Colin and Maddie were in aww with all the festivities around the lobsters. Great company and laughs .. just what the Dr ordered for Mike and I :)

That evening Daddy read Colin 'the night before Christmas' while Santa and his helpers worked all night on the big pile of gifts under the tree.

Christmas morning Colin walked into the living room with this frightful look on his face because he thought Santa was still here. It wasn't until Daddy told him Santa had gone home to the North Pole when he began to enjoy himself.

Let's open presents Daddy!

Merry Christmas Daddy!

Hugs for Mommy!
After a morning visit from Gigi, Papa and Uncle Jack Colin and Maddie took an early nap so we could continue the celebration at Aunt Liesl's house later Christmas afternoon...

More stories with Grandpa!

More presents ...

Off to Gigi and Papa's on Saturday for the Greening celebration!

One more snuggle Nanny, one more story Nanny!

Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Third Week Postponed

Our normal Thursday routine started a day earlier this week due to Christmas. When Gigi arrived, Colin knew it was treatment day and got into serious mode. Once again he told the nurse what arm he wanted her to draw the blood from and the order of the vital signs. Because his counts weren't ready last week they had us wait for the results. It seemed like the never ending morning as we waited .. clinic was very busy because of the holiday so it took nearly two and a half hours to get the results. Again, Colin's counts were not high enough for treatment. While his hemoglobin count has increased his ANC level is extremely low (170). The ANC level must be at 750 for him to proceed with treatment. Colin's favorite new Dr (Dr. Joe) reassured us that this happens from time to time and he is not too concerned. He also stressed how Colin should not be in public places or around anyone who is sick because his immune system is very low. Should Colin's counts continue to be low next week he will have a bone marrow aspirate to to test the marrow. However, the Dr's and Nurse's are confident that the results will be negative for cancer cells but is required under protocol. A benefit of this test is that it may stimulate his marrow to boost production of blood cells and give us peace of mind that he remains in remission.

Despite a very long wait for the blood count results, we managed to keep Colin entertained with books and more books. He also enjoyed playing Santa while handing out gifts and cards (compliments of Aunt Ginny) to all his Doctor and Nurse friends.

Mike and I have taken this news pretty hard since we had convinced ourselves he was ready this week but today is a new day and while we have this on our minds we have decided we need to put it aside and make this a truly special and Merry Christmas holiday for our family.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Comment Section

Hello Followers! Thank you all for giving our family the strength, love and support over these past couple of months. We appreciate all the thoughts and prayers you have sent our way. We'd like to start capturing them through the comment section of each posting. The comment link can be found at the bottom of each posting. We believe you need to be signed into blogger to submitted a comment. All comments are sent to us to read before they go live on the site, so should you have a comment/thought/prayer that you do not want us to post on the Colin's website just say the word and we'll keep it archived for our eyes only! We look forward to reading each and every comment our followers post and thank you all again for being there for us.

This week we pray Colin's counts have rebounded enough to begin his next phase of treatment scheduled for Wednesday.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Postponed Again

While Colin's counts continue to rise they didn't rise enough over the past week for treatment so he did not receive his treatment today. The nurse's and doctor's have reassured us that this is nothing to be alarmed over and it will happen periodically throughout this phase. His body is still recovering from the first phase and they are pretty confident he will be ready to begin this new phase next week. Since it's his white blood cells that need to rise a little more there isn't much we can do other than let time pass while his body produces more cells. So, we have another week off and look forward to identifying the difference between a two year old without chemo verse a two year old with chemo.

Next treatment is scheduled for Wednesday.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


On Thursday, Colin was to begin interim maintenance. This phase lasts for eight weeks and includes multiple chemo drugs given through IV. This phase is also count dependent which means if Colin's blood counts come back low, treatment is postponed until his blood counts recover. Unfortunately his ANC count nosedived and start of treatment was postponed until after his blood counts are checked again next week. We've been assured that this is not unusual and something not to be alarmed about. ANC refers to the number of infection fighting cells. The lower the number, the more prone he is for infection. He must have an ANC count of at least 750 for treatment . He was at 200 on Thursday.

Friday night Daddy and Grandpa held down the fort while Mommy and Grandma went to the third annual Greening Girl's cookie swap. The attendance grows each year as does the variety of cookies we all get to take home!

Saturday Colin spent the day with his Aunt Liesl and cousin Frankie while mommy and daddy started and almost completed their Christmas shopping! He had lots of fun! He also worked up an appetite and had a full bowl of Mac N Cheese for dinner (this appears to be his new favorite food..Kraft only though!)

Today was the holiday party in West Haven sponsored by the Tommy Fund and the Yale Children's Oncology Group. It was a fun day and included a visit from Santa! Colin wanted no part of Santa, but Maddie loved him, even tugging on his beard and giggling. Colin flirted with his new friend Hannah while Mommy and Daddy exchanged stories with her parents. It was also comforting to be surrounded by others and seeing family's at various stages in recovery. While we've been in touch with other family's who have previously been through this journey it's important for us to have a support system of family's currently going through this process as well.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Lots of Firsts

This past weekend Maddie had cereal for the first time! She enjoyed it more than we thought....she's like a little bird and opens her mouth wide each time the spoon comes near. If you're not careful she'll grab the spoon out of your hand and try and feed herself. It's pretty funny to watch because she hasn't mastered the whole hand eye coordination yet. You never know where the spoon is going to end up .. anywhere but her mouth!

We also got our first snow storm this weekend, well if you call it that... a dusting. Daddy and Colin were so excited they had to get all bundled up and head out to see the snow. He even had to bring a little snowball inside as a present for mommy. Nice!

Mommy also started back to work last week, working two and a half days. Although it was hard to go, Colin was very excited to see Gigi and Papa for the first day and Grandpa and Grandma for day two.

We've made our first ALL friend, Hannah, who is 18 months old and has the same diagnosis as Colin. She is four weeks behind Colin and hopes to come home from the hospital tomorrow. Hopefully Colin will get a chance to meet her soon but in the mean time Mommy and Daddy look forward to sharing stories as we progress through this journey.
Finally, Colin also had steak for the first time! He loved it.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Blood Count Education

Thank you everyone who called showing your concern about our last post. We thought we'd send a quick post to educate everyone on decreasing blood counts. While we don't want to see Colin's counts decrease, this is a normal process. During his next phase of treatment, which starts next Thursday, Colin's blood counts will have to be at a certain level to receive his chemo treatment. We've also been informed that during this phase he may need some transfusions which is also normal. Once again we thank everyone for showing their concern and we will keep everyone posted. So far so good this weekend besides the normal side effects.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Dr. Day

Today both Colin and Maddie had Dr. visits...

Colin had his last treatment of this phase today. His treatment consisted of two injections. Once again he did great and Colin and Daddy went to visit the owls we spotted outside the ER. Now it has become part of the hospital routine. Colin's counts have decreased so we'll be watching him closely. Next treatment is next Thursday.

Maddie had her four month check up today and the results are in:
Height - 25" (75%)
Weight - 16lbs 2.5 oz (95%)
Head Circumference - 43cm (50%)
She received two vaccines today so Colin will be able to take her band-aids off tonight.

After both Dr. visits we made a quick visit at Brenda's house so Colin could play with the kids since it was 65 out today. It was great to see him doing laps around the house with Ryan, Jess and Liam. We also covered Brenda's driveway with chalk drawings during our visit.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Holiday Weekend

It's been a while since we wrote so we'll try and catch you all up!

We had a great holiday weekend starting on Wednesday evening with a Xeller/Greening family reunion. The reunion was at Gigi and Papa's house where 6 out of 7 Xeller kids and their families took over the house. This was the first time Gigi and Papa had 10 young kids running around the house and we should have planned this event much sooner because we finally broke the bird clock (lol). Gigi pulled off a fabulous sit down dinner for 28 adults and children and it was a good time by all. Hopefully this will turn into an annual event.

Turkey Day was again at Gigi and Papa's house where we had another great dinner which consisted of Turkey, sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole, bread dressing, turkey potatoes and a ton of deserts. We were able to spend quality time with Gigi, Papa, Auntie Courtney, Uncle Mike, Uncle Jack, Uncle Ron, Aunt Kerrie, Cousin Morgan, Cousin Rachel, Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt Liesl, Uncle Joe and Cousin Frankie. At dinner this year, Gigi had everyone at the table pick someones name and we had to tell them why we were thankful to have them in our life. After dinner we chose our secret santa names in record time since no one picked themselves the second go around. As a group we decided to change things up this year and we incorporated a theme.... green. We can use our own definition of green so please post ideas for us!

On Saturday we helped Aunt Liesl, Uncle Joe and Cousin Frankie make a dent in their left overs. Grandma and Grandpa came for dinner too and worked up an appetite keeping up with Colin. Cousin Frankie taught Colin some songs on the piano and read lots of books! Colin's dinner was the filling from an apple pie ... he was up very late that night!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

This Thanksgiving we truly have much to be thankful for. This has been a year full of life lessons for our family. One year ago today, Heather and I announced some very exciting news. Colin was going to be a big brother! In the month's leading up to Heather's due date we received news that a finding on an ultrasound caused some concern. We felt truly blessed when Maddison was born on Monday July 27th a healthy, happy baby girl. Little did we know, that the joy we felt would be equaled with devastating news soon to come.

On Friday October 2nd, Colin was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. As we are now two months into treatment those original feelings of grief have been replaced with knowledge and hope. We are truly thankful for the advances in medicine along with the dedication and compassion the team of doctors and nurses who have given us hope in Colin's cure.

We are thankful for the love, support and strength our family and friends have provided to us.
Happy Thanksgiving to all,
Mike, Heather, Colin and Maddison

Sunday, November 22, 2009

What a Great Weekend!

Colin's counts are up and Maddie is feeling better so our weekend began with a walk on the bike path with Aunt Liesl on Friday afternoon. Not sure who was more tired Colin or Aunt Liesl. When we got home Colin said "Mommy, Teddy" went and got teddy and started walking to his room where he proceeded to say "nighty nighty, ready". Later that afternoon Colin, Maddie and Mommy went over to GiGi and Papa's house for pizza. Colin ate a piece of pizza!!

On Saturday morning we had a family field trip to Gozzi's turkey farm where we saw turkeys of all colors. Later that afternoon Mommy and Daddy went on an over due date ... windows out of the wrangler, sunset at Hammonasset, dinner and ice cream. Colin and Maddie spent the night with Gigi, Papa, Auntie Courtney, Nanny and Poppy. Colin had a great time staying up way past his bed time and Maddie screamed the whole time we were gone.

Another day in 50's on Sunday so we headed over to Brookvale farm where we visited all the animals (rabbits, donkey, pony, rooster, peacock and goats). After the farm we hit the big Cheshire jungle gym where Colin went from the slides to the swings to the sand pits. Maddie had a great time watching her brother run around with Daddy and she even got a little sun! After the park Colin and Daddy went to McDonald's for the first time. Colin ate a few french fries but wasn't interested in the nuggets.

Gearing up for a short holiday week. Next treatment day is Wednesday.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Treatment Day

Today Colin knew it was treatment day as soon as he woke up. Seems like he wakes up super early on Thursday's and when he doesn't get his milk right away it's a sure sign. But the sure give away is when Gigi arrives.

Colin received his chemotherapy through a spinal tap and Mommy and Daddy couldn't be more proud of him. Today, he talked through some of it naming all our family members and how he wanted to go for a walk with Gavin's car when we got home. This was a first.

After the procedure he drank his milk, ate a cheese stick and a cup of jello. The most he's eaten in five days! Once home he was pooped and took a 3+ hour nap.

Maddie is still wheezing and hasn't slept much today so we're looking forward to Aunt Liesl's Shepard's pie tonight, bath and bed. Next scheduled treatment is next Wednesday.

Another Day in the ER

Today was a long day. Colin has eaten next to nothing over the last five days and this morning he vomited three times. The doctors were concerned that Colin was dehydrated and possibly developing an infection. Since the clinic was full they had us visit the ER. Once there Colin had another chest x-ray which came back clear. No bacterial infection was identified in his blood sample. His blood counts were good so they filled him up with fluids and after five and half hours we made our way home. Once again he was a trooper and only complained when they accessed his port.

Maddie spent some time with Nanny and Poppy and then GiGi brought her home to her house to see Papa. You should hear her giggle, cough and wheeze .. back to the Doctor we go.

Regular treatment day is tomorrow so we head back down there in the morning.

Both are tucked in and sleeping so we are going to do the same. Good Night.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Remission, Rapid Responder

Today the doctor's confirmed Colin's test results and he is officially in remission with less than 0.01% cancer cells found. This means Colin is now in the next phase, consolidation!! Based on his positive prognostic factors he was placed in the low risk treatment plan. Within that treatment, he was randomized on an arm where he will receive additional chemotherapy. This phase will last for 28 days and consists of a few new drugs. Once again he was so brave today when receiving his first set of treatment for this phase. Part of his chemo was through a spinal tap (methotrexate), another part through IV (vincristine), the third through injection (PEG-Asparaginase) and the fourth orally (mercaptopurine). At this appointment he also was treated for his cough. They took an x-ray of his chest to make sure there was no infection as well as a swab test. Both of which came back fine. During our visit he had a coughing attack so he received a breathing treatment and is now on an inhaler just like Maddie.

Next appointment is on Monday for a blood check and they will check his chest again for the cough.

Maddie has been back to the Doctor because of her cough/wheezing and slight fever but the Doctor reassured us that her cough/wheezing is probably spiking right now and we should see an improvement over the next couple of days. She remains on the inhaler.

Signed tired Mommy and Daddy :)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

And the Food Keeps Coming!

Thank you to all our friends, family, co-workers and friends of friends for all the meals. Since Colin's diagnosis we can count on one hand how many times we've cooked. This means so much to the Westbrook family because it's one less thing we have to worry about and it gives us more time to spend together as a family. Thank you to everyone!

Colin is back ... every morning he has each of his toys out by 9:00am and smiles/laughs more than ever. His next visit is scheduled for Thursday where we will review the results of his last bone marrow test and hopefully start his next phase of treatment.

On the Maddie front, she had her first sick visit today with Dr. Frank, her pediatrician, and she has bronchiolitis (baby bronchitis) so she is now on an inhaler to help her cough.
Off to bed ... new 9:00 rule for Mommy and Daddy.

Friday, November 6, 2009

8 Hours of Sleep

Last night Mommy and Daddy got 8 hours of sleep because Ms. Maddison Leigh slept through the night for the first time. Was it the visit from Lou Lou, no afternoon nap, sleeping in Grandma's arms for the morning nap, the 6 oz bottle before bed or the talk Colin had with Maddie before bed? We'll never know but keep them coming Maddie.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Day 29

Final Dose 11/2: The evening of 11/2 Colin celebrated his last dose of Pepcid and Dexamethasone (steroid). Once again he took it without any trouble with his yogurt. Below is a picture of all the meds Colin took twice a day to this point.
Pepcid - coats the stomach for the steroid
Dexamethasone - steroid (2 pills)
Sulfamethoxazole - helps prevent pneumonia
Mirilax - prevents constipation
Emla - cream numbs his port

Rough Night 11/2: Colin was up a lot throughout the night, could it have been because Mommy and Daddy told Colin he was going to the doctor in the morning?

Day 29 Chemo Treatment - 11/3: Colin had to fast since midnight and started asking for milk around 4 am ... he was not a happy camper. We quickly packed up and headed down to Yale at 7:30.. we were about half an hour early which is a Westbrook trait however this was part of Mommy and Daddy's strategy ;) Around 9:30 Colin had a chemo spinal tap and a bone marrow aspiration. Once again he held both Mommy and Daddy's hands while looking into our eyes. The doctors and nurses say these procedures are harder for Mommy and Daddy to watch then it is on Colin. The procedure took a little longer than usual so Mommy and Daddy asked a bunch of questions. All was fine, just another doctor's style.

ER Visit 11/3: Colin's treatment area bled more than usual so after two phone calls to the clinic they advised us to head down to the ER to have it checked. We arrived around 6:00pm. Mommy went in to Register and Daddy and Colin followed however he noticed everyone in the ER wearing masks so they stayed in the doorway until the Nurse asked us to wait in the car until a room was available. This was a precaution because of the flu. Within 15 minutes she came outside and asked us to come in. Mommy, Daddy and Colin all wore our masks as we entered the ER. Once in the room we spoke to numerous nurses and doctors who were in touch with Colin's Oncology team. Colin had his first ultra sound to ensure he wasn't bleeding internally - results came back clear. Colin also had another blood draw and confirmed his counts were the same as in the morning which was good news. All home and in bed by midnight.

Day after treatment: Today Colin had a nice sleep in, waking up at 9:15. He was still pretty hungry but Mommy and Daddy saw a glimpse of Colin's true happy go lucky personality coming back as the steroids start to leave his body.

Monday, November 2, 2009

We'll Miss You Nanny

On Friday October 30th Colin and Maddie's Great Grandmother passed away. They were so fortunate to have two Great Grandmother's and a Great Grandfather to share the beginning of their lives with. Nanny lived in upper state NY (with Aunt MaryLynn and Uncle George) and most recently came to CT to attend Auntie Courtney's wedding where she had the time of her life. We now know she will be watching over Colin and will see him through this journey.

We love you Nanny and will miss you. Whenever we see a swan we'll think of you.

Nanny, Papa, Auntie Courtney, Uncle Jack, Mommy, Colin and Maddie
4 generations represented!

Nanny meets Maddie for the first time

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

One Month Post Diagnosis

Friday Follow Up Appointment: Colin's follow up appointment on Friday went very well - counts continue to increase and we got the okay from the Dr to take him to a couple of houses for Halloween. ANC level nearly tripled in three days!

Halloween: Colin was very excited to dress up for Halloween, he was Dr Colin and sported elmo slippers. Maddie was a Yankee cheerleader against Mommy's better judgement but Daddy was happy! Daddy made his famous stew, which has now become a Halloween tradition. Colin and Maddie spent the evening with Grandma, Grandpa, Nanny and Poppy and went to the neighbors houses to show off their costumes. They were pooped and in bed by 7:00.

Earlier in the Week: As the therapy and medications begin to take on a cumulative effect, things have become a little more challenging ... Colin goes through periods where he just doesn't know what he wants (a side effect of the steroid he is on) - his mood changes very quickly. Also have we mentioned he's eating us out of the house? The Doctor's response to this was "there is nothing worse than a two year old on steroids" (lol).

Temperature: He scared Mommy on Wednesday with a slight increase in temperature - it didn't result in anything but a worried Mommy. Needless to say, we learned the day after chemo is a tough day for Colin.

This week: On Tuesday Colin is scheduled for a spinal tap which is how he will receive his chemo this week. He will also have a bone marrow aspiration. The results of this test will determine the next course of treatment.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Blood Counts on the Rebound

It's been a couple of days ... our weekend was full of family fun. Friday started with a visit to the hospital for a routine blood check. Colin's blood count is starting to improve so Mommy and Daddy were relieved. Maddie played with Aunt Liesl in the morning and later that afternoon Auntie Courtney came over to play. Uncle Jack is finally feeling better so he came straight over once in town (he came home from school for the weekend). This is the first time Uncle 'god father' Jack was able to spend time with Colin since Colin was diagnosed. They played and read lots of stories. The night was full of family love ... Gigi, Grampy, Grandma, Grandpa, Auntie Courtney and Uncle Jack all stayed through dinner.

As the treatments go on Colin is getting more tired and clingy so we spent most of Saturday and Sunday snuggling!

Today, Colin received what we hope may be his final chemo treatment for this phase and wore his new scrubs which he was very excited about. All the nurses said Dr. Colin is sooo cute in scrubs. A big thanks to the crew at Waymark Associates! What an awesome gift! Colin's blood counts are still on the increase :) Erica from Child Life was able to pull some magic and coordinated a visit from Zoe the volunteer dog.

Maddie started the day with Gigi and then Grandma and Grandpa relieved her. Grandma and Grandpa were able to spend some quality time with Colin reading and playing before he headed off for a much needed nap.

Next routine blood check on Friday and then spinal tap and bone marrow test next Tuesday.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bone Marrow Test Results

Today we received a call from Carolyn, Colin's Nurse Practitioner, who had good news about Colin's bone marrow test. Last week the cancer cells were reduced to 54% but this week he's down to 0.4%. She is very pleased with his progress and said his body is doing everything it needs to do right now. In the morning we're headed to Yale so they can check his blood counts before the weekend.

Colin was very tired and clingy today, he took an early nap. Later in the day Mommy, Colin and Maddie enjoyed a nice walk in the 70 degree October weather. Gigi stopped over with dinner from another friend and took some time out to snuggle with Colin on the couch. When Daddy came home Colin had already eaten dinner so it was play time with Daddy before bed. Did I mention he's eating us out of the house? The steroids must be working.

Pictures from buzz day were added to yesterday's post.

Today Colin has 50 crew members (followers) ... we're speechless.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Buzz Day

Today Colin was a little sleepy, he took two naps and enjoyed laying on the couch watching cartoons for most of the day. Aunt Liesl came with lunch and read Colin LOTS of stories. Colin gave Maddie kisses as she sat in the bumbo seat for the first time. Gigi delivered another dinner, what great friends she has!

We ended the day with a visit from Brenda, Colin's home away from home while Mommy and Daddy are at work. She gave Colin a buzz cut. So handsome ... we'll post pics tomorrow :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Fourth Chemo Day

This week Daddy started a new work schedule working four ten hour days to be able to come to clinic for important visits.

The three of us headed down to New Haven early this morning for our 8:30 appointment. Thank goodness we made it early because Colin couldn't eat anything after midnight last night and all he wanted this morning was his milk. Did I tell you all he's eating us out of the house with the steroids he's on. Anyway, once down there Colin was prepped and received another bone marrow test. He was much calmer this time than from previous. His platelet count is rebounding but his hemoglobin came down so he received a transfusion today. His immune system is VERY low right now so the doctor reminded us that Colin should not be around anyone who is sick.

On the Maddie note, she only got up once last night ... Yipppeeee! Gigi started out the day with Maddie and was relieved by Grandma and Grandpa.

Once home we went for a nice family walk, Colin walked for a while so he was pooped when we got back. He was asking to go nighty nighty at 6:00. We were able to hold him off until 6:45, gave him is meds and off to lala land he went.

Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers today :)

Launched Website

Today we distributed the link to this website to family and friends. Please log on often as this will be our way to update you all on Colin's progress. Also, be sure to add yourself as a follower.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Another Family Day!

Today was another great family day. Maddie and I went grocery shopping in the morning while Daddy and Colin cooked a turkey. Aunt Liesl, Uncle Joe and Frankie stayed for dinner. Gigi dropped off baked ziti and meatballs which Colin got into right away. Another great dinner for a week night. Bath and bedtime was early tonight .. everyone was tired from playing all day.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Family Day

Today was the first day the four of us were home together in a long time so we spent the day doing NOTHING but relaxing as a family. A visit from Uncle Ron, Aunt Kerrie, Morgan and Rachel made our day.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Clinic Day

Today Colin's platelets were boarder line so he received a transfusion since we're approaching the weekend and our next scheduled clinic day isn't until next Tuesday. Colin did great .. not a peep out of him when they drew his blood. He napped during the transfusion and was very fussy when he woke up. But it was only the matter of minutes until he was his happy self again. Once we got home he made himself cozy on the couch and watched cartoons.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

First Emergency Visit to Clinc

Today Mommy and Gigi took Colin in to have his blood tested because he was very pale and not himself. Counts came back okay but they want to see us again tomorrow. It's going to take some time for us to pick up on Colin's cues.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Welcome home Colin and More Good News

Came home today! Packed up and left the hospital by 11:30. Went for a walk when first home and then had a great lunch. Colin had a huge smile when he saw his bed at nap time. More good news .. the nurse called and told us Colin's test results came back and he's responding well because half the cancer cells are gone already and spinal fluid was clear. Still on for bone marrow next week. Grandma made ravioli for dinner. Shared it with Gigi, Papa, Grandma and Grandpa. Organized all of Colin's meds and Colin successfully took them all. Ran to Walmart for a new high tech thermometer. Everyone off to sleep in their own beds :)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Third Chemo Day

Mommy came back to the hospital. Maddie spent the day with Brenda again and Daddy worked a half day. 12:30 Colin had his second chemo treatment via IV and through the spine. Colin also had a bone marrow aspiration. Jeff came in to provide sedation and Carolyn performed procedure. Colin was very upset after the procedure but calmed down after given juice and anti sedation med. Grandma and Grandpa came and helped keep Colin busy. Daddy had sleep over and Mommy was home with Maddie.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Chromosone Test Results

Daddy went back to work. Maddie spent the day with Brenda. Mommy dropped off scripts and spent the day with Colin. Dr. Beardsley came in to tell Mommy good news. The gene type came back and Colin has a favorable gene/chromosome matching. Daddy met mommy at hospital after work and spent the evening with Colin. Gigi had a sleep over with Colin and mommy and daddy left after he fell asleep.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Hospital Day Nine

Daddy and Colin were cruising by 9am and then colored and played until nap time. Nanny and Poppy came and brought Colin a match box car to add to his daily collection. Gigi's friend brought dinner for Mommy and Daddy. Gigi came back for another sleep over.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Family Dinner, Hallway Car Races and a Visit from Dolly

Yogurt is still working with the steroid pill. We took a family walk in the morning and Colin brought back a book to read. Dolly the volunteer dog came to visit Colin and made his day.

Family dinner in the family lounge (Gigi, Papa, Nanny, Poppy, Courtney, Mommy, Daddy and Colin). Jack wasn't feeling good so he stayed home to protect Colin. Courtney made a pork roast which she brought in in a crock pot. After dinner we had car races down the hall. Gigi and Papa had a sleep over with Colin while Mommy and Daddy went home to check on Maddie who Grandma and Grandpa were watching.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Second Chemo Day

Colin took his steroid pill today with yogurt. First day without the IV. Platelet count came in low, received transfusion to increase the count in preparation for chemo later today. Colin was a trooper for the chemo shot, he was off cruising the halls within five minutes...we had a family race. Daddy and Colin had a slumber party and watched the Yankee game.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Full Day of Hospital Activities

Grandma and Grandpa came early and we all went to story time and activities. GiGi and Papa played all afternoon. Courtney brought dinner for two for mom and dad and posted a 'no visitors' sign on the door. Colin had a great time on the patio with Gigi and Grampy.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Hospital Stay Extended

Because of the fever Colin had to stay in the hospital for an extra week while they monitor him for infection.

A visit from the hospital dog volunteer made Colin's day.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Subtype Results, First Chemo Day

Met with the medical team to review leukemia subtype and to discuss treatment options. Grampy came with us as a third set of ears. Chemo started at 8pm. Fever was identified during vital signs around 11pm. IV antibiotics started and blood sample was taken.

Monday, October 5, 2009

First Chemo Day

Colin received his first chemo treatment Monday 10/5 and was in good spirits. He made many new friends and flirted with the nurses by blowing them kisses and giggling with them. His bedtime routine was 'cruising' the floor on his little tike car saying "nighty nighty" to all the nurses and doctors.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Room 726

We made room 726 on the PICU floor of the children's hospital our home for 12 days.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Admitted to the Hospital

Colin had his two year check up on Wednesday 9/30/2009 which identified an abnormal hemoglobin count. His pediatrician referred us to Yale for additional blood work. Since Colin had also been recently seen for a limp when walking, additional blood work was ordered. On the morning of October 2 Colin and Mommy headed down to Yale where they took the blood sample. Within a few hours we received a call from the pediatrician instructing us to bring Colin to Yale to be admitted for further evaluation. We brought Colin through the ER and were admitted in the early evening. Further blood work and bone marrow biopsies identified the type of childhood leukemia as Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, "ALL". The subtype is called precursor or pre-B. Each of these factors are known to be highly treatable.

(in the car before admission)