It's 10:15 on Tuesday night and I'm sitting here in a darkened hospital room curled up on my little bed and reading all the emails and comments that have been left for us by all of you kind and wonderful people. It's in the quiet moments like this (sweet Ethan is sleeping) that I can reflect and be encouraged... thank you for that. I certainly need re-fueling and your words do that for me.
Though I did post a message this morning, a doctor came in just now and further explained to me - in words I can understand - more of what's going on with Ethan. I'd like to share with you a more detailed explanation so that you can know how to pray.
Based on my below message, you understand what type of terrible situation is going on with Ethan's blood. I had mentioned that he was responding well to the chemo. That is a very good thing; however, that simply means the chemo is doing its job. The REAL test comes in the next few days. If Ethan's white blood cells sky-rocket while he's off of the chemo these next few days, then his body/blood isn't truly "responding" to the treatment. If the white blood cells (cancer cells) only respond (die/decrease in size) while he's on the chemo treatment, but go back to their higher levels while he's off of the chemo... then it's considered that he's not really responding well to this type of treatment. Because that would mean that he's only "okay" while the chemo is pumping through his blood. The true test is whether or not the chemo has killed whatever cells it needs to and stops them from reproducing. So the next couple of days are critical in us knowing whether or not this type of treatment really is helpful to him.
I also now understand that the chemo is killing off the white cells (the cancer), but it also attacks his red cells (the good cells) and his plasma. So while on chemo, he will still need the blood and plasma transfusions (on a day to day basis) to replenish the good cells.
All of the treatment he's going through right now is just to keep him stable at this point. The chemotherapy and the blood transfusions are not treating him to "heal" him right now. They are simply keeping him from getting any worse until they can determine a proper overall treatment plan for Ethan's rare condition. They are waiting for a specialist out of state to send his final opinion/diagnosis before they begin a more aggressive treatment plan with the goal of a cure. Right now they are just trying to keep Ethan's cancer from getting any worse.
My prayer tonight is that over the next couple of days Ethan's white cells remain in a "safe zone" while off of the chemo... that would indicate a true, positive response. And, that the doctors have wisdom as they determine exactly what type of intense treatment Ethan will go through over the next many weeks as they get him ready for a bone marrow transplant. I'm also asking for prayer for the sores that have developed in Ethan's mouth, throat and esophagus - a side effect from the chemo. It has been very painful for him to eat today as a result. They've put him on morphine for the pain and that seems to have helped him for now.
Well, this is long enough so I'll end here... and will now try to get some sleep before my little one wakes up wanting to be fed.
Continue to pray for healing. Continue to pray for a miracle. I'm believing. My husband has hope. And together, with you, we know the Great Physician, the all-power God can do ALL things.