Abby's tumor was found after her birth in the newborn nursery. She had trouble breathing soon after her birth, which combined with her large head size made the nurses suspicious. They ordered an ultrasound to check for a brain bleed. They found the bleed along with a large malignant tumor taking up much of the right side of her brain.
We heard about St. Jude's through the Dream Home Fundraiser. We had bought a ticket just a month or two before.
The first trip, we were overcome by the kindness and hopefullness of the doctors, as well as the family environment in the waiting room. We were all there for the same reason: to fight for our babies lives. The parents that have been there for a while make it a point to introduce themselves to new families. It makes for a sort of cohesive community inside and outisde of the hospital walls. We have friends through St. Jude's that will always be as close to us as our own families.
St. Jude's gave us the hope that our daughter could beat this disease, that she could come out on the other end a healed, happy and independant woman. They also reminded us that the love of God is alive in the world. There is so much good, so many people that choose to give out of their own needs to help those less fortunate. How could you have anything but hope for our future, when you see the work of St. Judes?
Abby is the first child of her age treated for this type of cancer, so no one really knows for sure the odds of her prognosis. The doctors estimate that she has between a 20-50% chance of remaining cancer-free. But we don't put too much weight in their estimates. Abby is healed!
St' Jude's charged our insurance, but they never made us pay a penny. Even now they take care of all of Abby's cancer related medical needs. Last week, through the local St. John/ St. Jude affiliate, Abby's eye surgery as well as two pre-op and one post-op visit were completely paid for by St. Jude's.