Saturday, May 17, 2014

Once in a great while...

Good morning Everyone,

There has been a long period of time where nothing has happened, but just recently we got really hopeful news! I can't help but feel a little excited! So as you can remember, my dad got a bone marrow test done and the results came back as follows...The blast cells are under 5%! Just before his chemo, they were above 15% but this type of chemo was so aggressive that it really cut the cancer back. After we got those results, we had to wait for a treatment plan. The doctors have decided that John will once again donate stem cells and as soon as the cells are collected my dad will be waiting to receive them. Hopefully, because the cells are still fresh things will go more smoothly than in previous trials. My uncle has already started the donation process. Next Friday, if on schedule, my dad will have a new set of stem cells in his blood stream busy with killing the leukemia once and for all!!  If things do go really well, my dad asked me to mention that he is looking forward to attending the June 29th benefit put together by my aunt and uncles! As for the title of this blog post, once in a great while... the doctors found neutrophils in my dad's blood! Neutrophils are a type of white blood cell that help mediate an immune response when there is an infection in the body. This is soooo good because he hasn't had these in over a year! I do need to mention what will happen just in case things won't go well. If after four weeks, the stem cells haven't worked, my dad will need a whole knew transplant. By that I mean a new donor will be chosen and he will go through intensive chemotherapy and then 100 days where he has the new cells in his body. We are all crossing our fingers for Johns cells to work so he never has to endure another extended hospital stay. Ever.

I would like to thank you all once again for everything that you have done. Before this happened in my life, it was easy to critique my surroundings and focus on the negatives in life, but those who have been with us for the entirety of this event have changed my perspective completely. I am able to count my blessings every night and I can say a prayer for each person who has helped me and my family out.

Laura Katchmark

Friday, May 2, 2014

Drillin' Holes

Good Morning Everyone,

The rain has stopped (for now) and spring is here! Everything seems happier in the spring. I've always loved watching the earth go from white, to a nasty brown, to a beautiful electrifying green! has kept me so busy and I know that has been one of my frequent excuses for not posting regularly but seriously...I'm in the international baccalaureate program and we have HUGE tests at the end of our senior year that we can get college credit for! Life has also been busy for my family. My dad has been doing alright besides the fact that his platelet counts are not replenishing themselves and he has been very tired. This could be for multiple reasons, but the doctors still think that the chemo is playing into that even though that was over a month ago! This afternoon he will get another bone marrow test. I can't even tell you how many holes and samples they have taken from him! This will once again tell use just how much cancer is left. Once the results are back we will go from there. Day by day, hour by hour. On a bit of a side note, I am asking you to offer my dad your sense of humor and words of encouragement. Spending a lot of time in a hospital is heartbreaking especially when the weather is turning for the better. As for posting, I can't promise I will have time to update the blog right away but I will let you know what the results are one way or another:) Thank you for your everlasting love and support.


Spring is a time for love, for joy
for rekindled hope
and the heart of a boy
to become healed again, just as before,
and for life to start a new once more. 

Special Announcement:

My family has planned a benefit for my dad and It will be held at the Crystal VFW on Sunday June 29th I will post more information soon.