Grow cells grow!!

   

        

    “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and give thanks in all circumstances,” I repeat it to myself multiple times a day and night.  Today is day 15 since the second transplant.  Did I mention before how hard it is to wait?  We are technically just now entering the ideal time frame for engraftment (14-28 days).  It was Day 24 on the first go around.   Labs are drawn at midnight and results are typically posted by 2am.  Sleep is my enemy until I get those numbers most nights.  I’m not sure why I need them at 2am versus 8am.  It’s like an addiction even though it doesn’t change a thing about our circumstances usually.  The anticipation of seeing elevated numbers in hopes of our next miracle is exhausting.  Days and nights seem to run together.  I’m giving thanks for my calendar app among many other things.  Yesterday and today, we noted a slight bump upward in white blood cell counts.  Grow cells grow!

   REJOICE:  The last two weeks have encompassed a mix of emotions.  We have rejoiced over several medical milestones.  No more bipap machine for breathing so we can enjoy Khaleda’s beautiful smile and listen to her witty remarks (and there are plenty).  

  
The NG tube has been removed so “real” food is on the menu which basically consists of Doritos, Apple Strudels, honeybuns, and fries.  I have bought more processed food while in this hospital than in all my life combined, but I’m not complaining. Remember, I’m rejoicing right now.  Some medications have been removed or reduced, but never fear Angry Archie (our endearing name for the ever beeping medication pole) is still alive and filled with drip lines.  Khaleda shows small steps of physical improvement every day.  The doctors have even been caught using the phrase, “in order to get you out of here.”  Music to our ears. 

  

There have been lots of “firsts” for our families.  As for Sameer, he visited his first museum and library, learned to ride a bike, and saw his first dinosaur to name a few.  He has a true affinity for Curious George.  

   
    
    
   
   Khaleda’s mother cooked naan in an electric oven for the first time and second time and hopefully many more times for the rest of us to indulge.  Of course, I ask a million questions like… how much of this and how long for that?  Her answer is always simple, “until it looks like it should.”  No recipe, no clock, no timer or set oven degree. Just love and patience. Naan is a huge part of their diet, eaten with most meals, and  baked every 1-2 days in a wood burning fire place back home.  Pure comfort food.  Great with anything!

   

  

    GIVING THANKS:  We are giving thanks in all circumstances as best we know how. I would never wish this experience for anyone.  Watching your child suffer day in and out is pure misery, but through this I have also witnessed some of the most beautiful glimpses of humanity.  I have received emails, texts and letters that have warmed my heart and changed my life.  My mother has given up any personal life she may have had previously.  My dad can hardly have a conversation with me without tearing up thinking of the overwhelming works being done.  Grown men are wearing pink and purple bracelets that say #fightlikeagirl.  Khaleda’s school has launched a massive campaign for her that gives our family encouragement to keep on fighting.  Students collectively prayed for her and filled boxes with letters of encouragement.  What a powerful expression of love and support among our future leaders!  Friends and friends of our friends have provided meals, groceries, toys, clothes, financial support and many other items as needed during this time.  The outpouring of generosity has been tremendous.  One evening, two ladies knocked on our apartment door delivering bags of donated groceries, toiletries, clothes and more.  They were the friends and family, of a friend that worked with my sister-in-law in the past.  Signs of real compassion from all directions. Every day I receive encouraging texts and calls from people who love us and just want to check in.   It is humbling.  “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was sick and you visited me…”   Answered prayers and outward examples of a great calling. 

   
    
 
   
 
   
   
 

PRAY WITHOUT CEASING: Continue to pray along side us without ceasing – specifically for Sameer’s cells to grow, infections to heal, family bonds to grow stronger and ultimately a discharge from this unit.  This morning (yes at 2am), we saw a second slight uptick in the white blood cell count.  We are unable to know if it is her old cells growing or Sameer’s new cells.  Only time will tell. Just. Keep. Going.  My prayers are for these things along with prayers of thanksgiving for what so many of you have done for us.  Not out of obligation but love.  The words are hard to find.  We are grateful!

  She has been cloaked in your continuous prayers and literally with this prayer chain.  Thanks be to God!!

  

 

 


3 thoughts on “Grow cells grow!!

  1. I am praying for Khaleda and your entire family daily. Since Tara was discharged I have been anxious to return to 5200 to see how you all are doing. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers daily and I can’t wait to visit soon! Keep Fighting Like A Girl!!! Love, Lisa and Tara Garman (5216)

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