Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Adventures of Cousin Mack

This little fellow is my nephew Mack.  I wanted to introduce you to him because Melanie's older sister and her husband have had their own adventures in raising a disabled child with little Mack.  He was born about 18 months ago with Spina Bifida.  Through some spinal surgery only hours after his birth, Mack is pretty well off.  He only lacks feeling in the soles of his feet.

His family has had some of the same good experiences as mine with Early Intervention and many caring therapists that have helped Mack to progress.  He's a very happy kiddo who smiles easily and loves to play with his cousins, Whitney and Liam.  He rolls on the floor to get places around the house.  Despite some developmental delays in mobility, the doctors have a good outlook for his overall progress.

But over the last month, Mack has started having persistent, unexplained fevers that are as high as 103 degrees.  He's been lethargic and sleeping for 14 hours or more some days.  The doctors ruled out ear infections and other common illnesses and finally decided to run a blood test.  The results came back yesterday.  Mack has been diagnosed with Leukemia.

I'm no expert, but from what I've been reading, he'll need some more tests to determine what variation he has and then treatment will begin.  This will likely include chemotherapy and radiation.  That's a very scary prospect for such a little guy whose health is somewhat fragile already.  Leukemia treatments can have up to an 85% success rate in children so we have high hopes.

We'll be praying for Mack's health and hoping things go well with his treatment.  And I'll be giving my own two little ones more hugs and not stressing so much about little things like chewed hearing aids and books scattered around on the floor.  Those kinds of things just don't matter.  

Shocks like this are a good reminder that each day with our children is a treasure.  We must never forget that.

1 comment:

Angie said...

Oh you are so right when you say to treasure each little moment and each day...even though it may be stressful at times. These situations are reality checks for everyone and make us realize that life is truly a gift. I will say my prayers for this little guy and hope that the additional tests bear good results and that his future treatments are successful. God bless them and your family.