Monday, August 30, 2010

Andrew's 2nd Surgery... GO TEAM ANDREW!!!

On August 18 Andrew had a second surgery to remove margins around where his tumor was. They found that margins tested positive for cancer cells. I tried to keep people updated through emails and these are the messages I sent..
"Andrew is out of surgery and waking up. He is very tired and groggy from medicine. The surgery went well and they removed what they hope is a good margin around the tumor's location. He had a skin graph, but it ended up being smaller than they thought. His leg is in a huge splint and he won't be bending it for a week or so. He is having a bit of pain, but managing it like a champ. We are waiting for a room to open up and then they will transfer him and keep him for the night. The pathology reports may take up to a week to get back. Andrew did great and once again was so brave. We were so sad to see him wheeled off this morning because he wasn't very "out of it" yet, so he knew we were leaving and they were wheeling him into a big hallway of doctors and machines. Our poor guys face looked so scared, but they said he did great. Thank you for praying and supporting us. We will hopefully be coming home in the morning and Andrew will be hanging out in his cool green bed grandma set up for him in our family room!!! We love and appreciate all of you!!!"

- Monday, Aug 23 "We have a HUGE PRAISE...this morning the pediatric oncologist called to let us know that the margins around where they did Andrew's surgery came back NEGATIVE!!! This means that Andrew is hopefully CANCER FREE!! Praise the Lord, this has been our prayer all along! Once his leg heals they will do a bone scan and then an MRI in a couple months. If everything comes back clear, they will continue to closely monitor him and have him do a CT scan every couple months. We are very excited about the news!!
Andrew is doing well. He will have the big splint and the donor sight bandages removed tomorrow. He has been walking a little more each day on his crutches. Today he actually ventured to other rooms of the house and then discovered he could walk without his crutches. He looks like he has a giant peg leg. Mr. Determined nearly gave me a heartattack though because he quickly went from walking to attempting to run and then we found him trying to ride a scooter in the garage. We still really want him to take it easy because his leg still has quite a bit of healing and his body needs rest.
Our whole family has loved all the family and friends who have stopped by. It has been nice each day to have people come by to visit. Andrew is a lucky boy and has the greatest friends in the world! Thank you for all your support.
We have an appointment this week and then one next week. If we get any new news we will update. For now our prayer is that his knee continue to heal and that tomorrow when they take the splint off that he has good mobility. We still don't know if he lost any mobility from the surgery, from the looks of him today, hopefully he hasn't. We would also love for him to be able to get back in school as soon as possible.
We feel so blessed by all of you and we can't thank you enough for everything that you have done to bless our family!! Go TEAM ANDREW!!"

Wednesday, August 25 - "Although we had good news about Andrew’s cancer this week, I feel like we are up against another big challenge. Yesterday we went to get Andrew’s splint off and it was the hardest day yet for me and Andrew in this whole process. I feel like I was strong through most of the other challenges we have faced, but I crumbled. Andrew has been so courageous and now I feel like our boy is crushed and his spirit is very scared. Thankfully Andy was strong and took things a lot better than I did. When they peeled his splint back, the sight of what his leg looks like (where they did the surgery) was beyond surprising. We weren’t sure what to expect, but nothing could have prepared us for what we saw. Poor Andrew caught a glimpse and turned white. I actually had to excuse myself from the room for some water and fresh air because I got so sick to my stomach. His poor knee has a large indention in it and it looks very different, especially since the new skin is still trying to heal. I will spare details, but it doesn’t look pretty. They said it will take years to really heal. Maybe by the time he is 10, the skin may look similar in color, but it will always look different. To say the least… it was very scary.

Poor Andrew went from running round on his full leg cast to being so scared to even come out from under his covers. He asked us to not talk about it at all because he was afraid it would give him bad dreams. The bandage wrap slipped down in the night and he woke up screaming and tried to full it back on. From that time on, he won’t uncover it at all. He is a very scared boy right now. As parents we are scared and as a mommy I am very upset over all the things I know my boy will be afraid to do…..running, playing soccer, going to school, touching his leg, and many more! ***I typed this out this morning and Andrew had a much better afternoon and was actually walking around and feeling more confident..praise the Lord already!!

The challenge ahead of us is to help our boy become more accepting and comfortable with his knee. I know this is going to be the biggest challenge Andrew has faced. It will stay wrapped for a bit and then we will probably have to find some type of cover for it. At this point he is so scared to even look at it or stand on his leg so we can’t even tell if he has lost much mobility.

Because you have all been so faithful in your prayers, we are asking you again to PRAY…I am confident that the challenge Andrew is facing can only be overcome by the strength of Jesus…here are some specific prayers ….

“Please give Andrew courage and calm his fears at this present moment”

“As time goes on please give Andrew confidence to run and play and not be ashamed of his leg……Jesus, help him to not be self conscious!!

“Protect Andrew from any comments that people/kids may say that would offend him”

“Allow our whole family to tell the story of Andrew’s knee as a testimony of the amazing God we serve and who we choose to put our FAITH in”

“Give his mommy courage to face this trial and accept it” (at this point I am having a very hard time even thinking of looking at his leg and I know I need to be able to change the bandages and help Andrew get over his fear)

“Praise for a daddy who is being so strong and doesn’t have a problem changing bandages”

Thank you all..we love you all and are so THANKFUL for you!! We know that we will get through this and are confident that with all of your help our precious boy will feel encouraged and never feel for even a moment that he should be embarrassed!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

1st GRADE!!!

Seriously..our boy is getting too old!!! He went to his first day of 1st grade today. We were so glad that he could be at school for the first day because he will have surgery tomorrow and be out for a couple weeks. We went to see his classroom on Monday and then Tuesday was the day. The table of decorated for Andrew when he woke up, he chose breakfast burritos for breakfast, made his bed, got dressed, ran through his giant banner, scootered to school with friends, and the lined up like a BIG KID on the playground. His teacher is Mrs. Gack. He has some friends from last year in his class, but he seems to miss some of his buddies who are in a different class. I was nervous for him because they really treat the 1st graders like big kids. They play on the BIG KID playground which seems HUGE to them and they are at school all day. Andrew had a great year last year, so we are so excited to see what this year brings. He is a great student and always works hard and is a great friend to others. He brought a note home today that said he was "being a good friend." At the end of the day all the 1st grade students took home a green TEAM ANDREW bracelet to wear in honor of Andrew. It was so cute to see all the kids walk out of the classroom with them on their wrist. I'm sure we'll have some pictures in a couple weeks of our first day back to school again.

End of Summer Fun

Katelyn, Jack, and Frank came to visit during our last weekend of summer vacation. We went to Music in the Park with them and also out to Folsom Lake to do some boating. I didn't do too well at taking many pictures, but here are a few. Allie actually took a bunch of these. She has an obsession with Frank ( she calls him) so I had many pictures of Frank on my camera. She is a little ham and just makes us laugh!!

Rocklin RUMBLE begins practice...

Andrew had his first soccer practice last week. He was able to get in 2 practices before his surgery. His team has a bunch of his good buddies from school on it...Drew, Spencer, JJ, Piero, and Chase. He loves playing soccer with these boys and he has learned a lot of new skills from playing with them. We loved seeing him run around out there. His knee is doing great and he can finally run regular on it. We are hoping he will recover quickly and be able to get out and play with the RUMBLE soon!!!

My Little Bugs

Just some random pictures of my kiddos from the last couple of weeks. Between all three of them loving to steal my camera to take pictures and Allie always saying "cheese mommy" and posing for a picture, I get quite a few fun pictures on my camera.
There is a picture of Andrew wearing Michigan boxers and an Ohio State shirt....All the boys love Michigan but daddy really doesn't like Ohio State. The shirt Andrew is wearing is very special because grandma E had bought one for each of the boys in Ohio a couple weeks before she passed away. We found them hanging in her closet waiting to give to the boys. We love this story because she had no idea that Andy didn't like Ohio State or that our boys always tease him about it. They finally have a little Ohio gear to tease daddy with, they just love it and think they are so funny!!!