Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Surgery is Scheduled

The stem cell harvest was the first big milestone. (Other than how we feel after each chemo cycle is completed.) Now we are about to tackle the surgery milestone. We've waited for 4 months to get to this point and it feels exciting and scary to finally make it this far.

Surgery will happen on Wednesday, September 28th, at 11 AM, here in Sacramento (not S.F. yet). It is scheduled to last 6 hours. I have a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes as I try to digest the fact that I should be happy that my son will be parting ways with Doohickey. It's scary. I know this is part of what we've been praying for, but I'm nervous. I try not to let William see my nerves, because he is eight. He doesn't have any fear of these steps he has to take. He whispered in my ear Friday night, "Aren't you glad I'm not one of the kids who dies from cancer?" "Yes, I'm so glad!" We've never talked about that with him that it was even a possibility, but he's smart and he's figured out that that happens to some children.

William will still have another round of chemo about a week or so after surgery. We'll wait for him to fully recover (about 3 weeks) and then we're off to San Francisco for about a month where he'll receive a round of high dose chemotherapy to kill all existing stem cells/bone marrow. 72 hours after the chemo, the transplant will occur and he will be in strict isolation while his body works to regenerate his bone marrow and immune system. When we return home, William begins radiation. But now I'm getting way ahead of myself.

Ryan's brother, Mitch, arrived last night from New York. His wife, Hilary, will join us on Wednesday. We are so happy they are here to help even though surgery will happen just after they leave. We are so happy because we will all get to be together while William is happy and full of energy. Family fun is the plan for the week.

We're off to Oakland now to catch an A's game tonight!


  1. I am glad you finally have a date! Good luck with the surgery. You have a right to feel anxious, surgery is scary no matter what kind it is! Have a great time at the game! I bet William will love all the fresh air.

  2. Yay for fun family outings!! I'm happy to hear you have a date (and even a time!) for surgery. Let me know if I can help in any way. We will continue to pray for William and the rest of you...

    Take a deep breath, and give yourself a hug from me! xoxo

  3. Prayers sent your way.

  4. Questions to the guys from a mother who has lived away from the American League too long- are the A's and the Indians in the same league? Is Julio Franco still around? Wish I could go to the game with you all.

    Progress and change are scary--every step carries its own risk. But look how far we've come. And yes, William, we're glad you're one of the kids who won't die from cancer. I listened to comference talks all the way home from Boise today, and kept thinking about how the talks applied to your situation. You are meant to do something great.

  5. these days i'm spending equal ammounts of "thanking" as i am "pleading" about william in my prayers. what a blessing.
    my soren - our "don't foget to bwess wiyam" police said to me tonight - after i said the blessing on our dinner - and remembered to bless william with out being reminded by him... he said, "whew! good job wemebowing mom!" LOL.

  6. Julie- It is so nice to be able to check your blog periodically and get an update about how William is doing. I'm so glad that things seem to be moving in the right direction. I will be thinking of you and praying for William and the doctors with his surgery next week. Your faith and example are inspiring to read. I so admire your optimistic attitude coupled with your very real and genuine outlook on life. You are doing such an amazing job juggling all of this along with 4 other little boys. My thoughts and love are with you.
    Amy (Pearce) Bingham

  7. On Sunday William told me with a smile, "My mom got a flu shot on Thursday, and ALL my brothers have to get them tomorrow...but not me!!!" Talk about looking on the bright side! He's awesome.
    So glad surgery's on the calendar, even though it didn't come when you had the extra help in town this week. Hope you all had lots of fun though, and let us help you out next week if you need it.