Monday, February 5, 2007
The World Spins Madly On.
There was a balloon release last November. For Liam. It was right around the time I started this blog, and so the first post I ever made has pictures of this same day. I've been thinking about Liam a lot more than usual lately. I think about him a lot, but lately he's been on my mind almost at all times. It's hard to believe that he would have been SEVEN years old this June. That seems so old... I wonder what he would have been like. Liam was always so tiny, and young, and fragile to me. He was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma at age 3, and passed away when he was 5. That's a big percentage of his life that was spent battling cancer and living in hospitals.
On Saturday night after our game with Duke and the social afterwards, Em and I laid in bed for hours because neither of us could sleep. No reason, I think we were both just pretty wired. But we talked about cancer and NB for a long time. It's really awesome that there's someone else who's interested enough in NB to research it and read about it with me, and now I have someone to discuss it with. Honestly, if you begin to read about Neuroblastoma, and you begin to read the statistics, it's absolutely mindblowing. When diagnosed with Stage IV Neuroblastoma, the survival rate is around 30%. If the oncogene is MYCN amplified, your survival rate drops to around 20%. That is how Liam was diagnosed. If a child with any Neuroblastoma (Stage I, II, III, or IV) relapses, the survival rate is a DISMAL 0.5%. ZERO POINT FIVE PERCENT!?!?! The only reason that it's not 0% is because doctors must leave room for "miracles", special cases, unsolved mysteries, etc. Basically, to relapse with Neuroblastoma is a death sentence.
I could go on for hours but I'll spare you the boring read.
It's been awhile since I've requested thoughts or prayers for anyone, however there is a little girl, her name is Penelope. She has relapsed NB and she is in a lot of pain right now. Her parents are trying to make her as comfortable as possible, and they're having a hard time as well. Here's a picture of the sweet girl-
Christi Thomas with Penelope London
I'm a big fan of this picture, because Christi Thomas is one of my heroes. I know I've mentioned her before, but sometime soon I'll dedicate an entire post to this AMAZING girl. She died on September 19, 2006. Exactly 10 months after Liam. It was hard because when I first met Em, Christi was rapidly declining, and at CHOP (Children's Hospital of Philadelphia). I tried to play it off because I didn't want Em to think I was weird, haha, but inside it killed that Christi Thomas, a hero to the NB world, was slowly and painfully dying.
I kick myself everyday for never visiting Christi while she was at CHOP last summer. I was in the area so often. Christine, while she was in a coma, was at University of Penn Hospital, which is connected to CHOP. I even went next door to CHOP with Rachel and everyone and we attended this little shindig for kids who were stuck at the hospital. (Face painting, sand art, tie dying, etc.) I guess I was just pretty focused on Christine's situation, and making sure that my sister was okay and all of the leaders.
Okay, time to start some studying. Two big exams tomorrow.