Today is Transplant Day for my family. It’s been a long, hard-fought year for my mom, and it feels surreal to finally be at this place, receiving this gift, stepping into the great unknown. The following is a post I wrote last night for my mom’s Facebook prayer group, and I wanted to copy it here for memory’s sake.
Go with Jesus, Mama.
Some life-giving stem cells are currently en route from Europe! My mom’s international donor is a 26 year old male, and is a perfect match in the 13 categories that matter most. We are so very, very thankful for him.
This young man spent the last many days receiving injections to help move his stem cells from his bone marrow into his vascular system. Today, the cells were “harvested,” given to a courier, and began their journey across the world to reach my mom. They are kept live – never frozen.
The transplant is currently set for 7 pm on Valentine’s Day. Because the cells have been harvested peripherally (from blood), they will enter my mom in the same way – through IV into her vascular system. There is no surgery, just a steady drip over the course of a few hours.
The nurses keep laughing and telling my mom that the actual transplant is somewhat anti-climatic. So much has led up to it: the chemotherapy has eradicated her own marrow in preparation for the new cells. So much will follow after it: the hard dance of medications to help the body accept the foreign cells, the straight-up challenges transplants like this pose. But the transplant itself? A simple IV near her heart.
Once the transplant has happened, her body will be in for a tremendous fight. 26 medications will be given for many, many weeks, to help her body accept the new cells, to keep all her organs healthy, and to help the new cells settle in and do their thing. The physical challenges faced during this time will be beyond what she has so far experienced. The next 100 days are crucial.
Our big areas of prayer are:
1) total acceptance of cells – no rejection.
2) complete health as she recovers – no illnesses or infections.
3) that she will not develop Graft Versus Host Disease (GVHD, quite common).
4) that the leukemia will fully be gone from her body forever – and never, ever, ever return!
A bone marrow/stem cell transplant is not a guaranteed cure, but is a viable path toward one. My mom’s healing, her cure, must come through the hands of Jesus and Jesus alone.
We are praying and trusting that this will be the beginning of a new life for Laura. We are asking God in Jesus’ name to heal her. We are looking to him for the strength and stamina she needs to make it through. We are thanking him for her courage and peace.
Please keep praying with us, fill the comments here with your prayers and praise and encouragement. Thank you so much for your presence on this page and in Laura’s life.
Here we go!