Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Update- January 23, 2013

January 23, 2013
Almost a week post BMT!  I am suppose to: walk in the halls 3 X per day
                                             Get out of bed and sit in a lounger 3 X per day
                                             Work out on a standing bike
                                             Breathe 10 breaths 4 X per day
                                             Brush teeth 2 X per day and use a mouth rinse every 3 hours as needed.

So you can see that I am very busy!  My cell counts are hitting rock bottom and I will probably need a platelet transfusion here in about 4 days.  This is where this whole thing makes me a little crazy as I just spent 4 weeks of December trying my hardest to get these counts up. So now we want the counts down so Shawn's cells can take over my immune system. Always a bump or glitch to look forward to!  The nurse just told me I will probably be getting sores all over inside my mouth from the Chemo and Methlotrxate I'm getting constantly. I will be working very hard to stop these sores, as alot of patience have to have a feeding tube as it gets so difficult to eat.
     Thanks to all of your prayers, fasting, cards, and verbal well-wishes in this lonnnnnnng process.  I find it still very hard to wrap my brain around the fact that maybe someday I'll be strong and moving toward my goals.  I love my children so very much, in all their service, sacrifices, care and worries, and most of all the love they've shown me over these last few months! (not to mention the years of this horrible debilitating disease!)  My family and friends have helped me in so many ways.  Thank you all, I love you very much.
(wish I had a picture to share, but that's the next help on the computer I need!)

Friday, January 18, 2013

A strong mother, supportive family, and spiritual intervention

    It has kind of been a while since I last posted on Gloria's blog but I wanted to express how proud I am of my mom for how strong she has been throughout this whole process of her BMT. She has really been struggling with her health over the years; whether it be her myelofibrosis, leukemia, splenectomy, and now her BMT(maybe even a few I failed to mention) but she has fought through and overcome all of those.  Although there were many tears shed and thoughts of giving up with the treatments, she stuck with it and at this point all that has paid off. I can not even imagine how emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually draining an ordeal like this would be.
    My mother is one of the most spiritually oriented individuals I know and I also know that she would not have come this far without her immense faith in the gospel, the Lord, and the priesthood blessings she has received. She truly is a spiritual giant and a great example to me of what a proper member of the church should be.
    On a similar note, her brother and my uncle Shawn has been instrumental in this process. Volunteering his time, midi-chlorians(bone marrow-Star Wars joke), and his priesthood power - giving her blessings when she needed them. She sure loves her baby brother very much. There was no question from Shawn that he would be Gloria's bone marrow donor when we found out he was a match. We all appreciate your help throughout this ordeal uncle Shawn! Couldn't have done it without you!
   That goes for each and every one of you that have helped out with visits, cleaning Gloria's house, helping her with meals, taking time to talk to her and give her support, and anything else that I may have forgotten. Once again we are all grateful for the immense support and kindness shown by one and all. Thank you. We couldn't have done it without all of your individual efforts. It sure is inspiring to have such a loving, caring, and supportive family:)

Love ya'll,

*Also be sure to check out the trailer down below that Chari made for (Gloria's upcoming movie?) hahaha good stuff Char.


Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Transplant

It's January 17, 2013.
Gloria's new "Birthday" is what they call it. She's now successfully been transfused with a new immune system compliments of her super hero, Shawn.
It's been a long road, and we've only just begun.
I am hoping Nate, Melissa, or Kelene could possibly post some details (cough-cough) as it seems like I am getting behind.

Gloria completed her first round of chemo. 6 long weeks at the LDS hospital, adjusting to new surroundings and nightly rounds of "vitals". Even on the hardest days, she fought through. Not only is this type of Cancer painful physically, it's mentally grueling.

On Christmas Day she was allowed 6 hours of "freedom" to be released and spend with family. Of course clothed in complete armour, "Grandma" arrived to make our Christmas an extra special one.
(not sure if she was excited or not to get her new Vacuum, even if it is an Oreck!:)

Unfortunately, we only had limited time for Christmas traditions. A few hours before Glo arrived, we found out that my Grandma Connie (Gloria's Mom) was in the Utah Valley Regional Hospital from a stroke the night before. Gloria received permission to make a quick trip to the Provo Hospital before making her way back to her room 859 at the LDS Hospital.
Let's just say this is the year of Hospitals.

January 2nd, she was well enough to come home for ONE Week and "regroup". Luckily, we had Kelene & David here to pamper her with green smoothies and massages. Nate even had his esthetician friend come over and give her an eyebrow wax!  She may or may not have snuck to see Les Miserable... can't remember.

January 8th she went back up to LDS Hospital for another week of Chemo to prepare for today... the transplant. Today is the day. Shawn has worked soooo hard to be healthy and prepared with his bone marrow process. He cancelled his Birthday Party in leu of eating any sugar until after this transplant. Being a donor isn't easy. Shawn had to make many trips to the LDS Hospital for paperwork, special shots, and then 2 days of laying perfectly still while his bone marrow was sucked out of his body. (does that sound dramatic?)

Here is Shawn... holding very still...
 Don't be fooled, these nurses are not as "little" as they look.
Kim rocked this transplant.. great, great team!

If that isn't dramatic enough... maybe this trailer will be.
Glo's Glowing
 It's late, I can't think... suggestions are welcome.

Here it is:

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Cancer Sucks

Cancer Sucks. It really does.
I don't think one can even comprehend the hell it is until they've been there in some way.
I am so proud of my Mom for fighting this thing. She could give up, and just live as long as possible, but there's hope & she's fighting.

Lately, Jon and I have been discouraged by people making *excuses* or rationalizations with, "well, I had a poor childhood" or "I did this, because of this."

According to this philosophy, we all get free passes in life when we hit a road block. For me and my siblings, we've had a rough 18 years, but you know what? We are happy, we try not to blame, we are blessed, we are surviving and I am working on my anger. (Why does my mom deserve to be in this pain? Arghhh.)

We booked a hotel this weekend and spent time with Grandma.
On the 8th floor, there are white boards in the halls. We can write notes of encouragement to patients. Ryder and Noah are super proud of theirs.
Ethans words: you will live
{The kid just gets to the point}
After the boys left with Dad (to go swim at the hotel, of course!), I walked Glo around the floor (she needs to walk every day!). She loved her notes! Thanks boys!

>> update <<

I am not the doctor, or a cancer specialist, but here's what's going on:
Gloria has been fighting Mylo fibrosis for some time.
The cancer has been growing. A bone morrow transplant is inevitable.
There is a 50-50 chance of survival.
We are so grateful her youngest brother, Shawn, who is a bone morrow match & a willing donor! (giving bone morrow isn't a fun task)
She was scheduled for transplant Monday, Dec.10th.
Bone Morrow Biopsy last week found that the blasts had increased to Leukemia levels. If she were to go ahead with a transplant in this state, it may not work, her bad cells would end up taking over and killing the good cells from Shawn. So, we had to make a choice- and we chose to shoot the cancer down as best as possible prior to transplant.
She is currently receiving heavy chemo at the LDS Hospital.
We are on day 5 of 7.
Once the chemo treatments are complete, her cells will need to start healing (cross our fingers) and once they do, she can come home for a few days; regroup, and head back in for the transplant. This will consist of another type of chemo & about 2 months in the hospital. 2013 is going to be a great year! We are going to get Glo better and get her life back!
Love you Mom!


Tuesday, December 4, 2012


I know 2 things:
1. Cancer Sucks
2. I can't control it

Cancer is in the drivers seat. Our mission is destroy it, dodging bullets, tricking it with transfusions & being ready when it takes a sharp turn.
Today, we had to take a detour from the treatment plan.

Mom was scheduled to start treatment for this transfusion on Monday Dec 10. Bone Morrow biopsy came back yesterday that the blasts in her morrow were 19%.

20% is considered Leukemia.
The entire treatment plan just took a right turn.
I've been here at LDS for 13 hours- eyes are burning- so I will make this short and fill you in on the details tomorrow.

She tries to keep smilin as she is being admitted. Her hair will be gone soon.

Found this box of tissue at the new Trader Joe's

It's like the Christmas Story when the mom dresses her son in his snow suit.
 She leaves this room, she has to put on the infection armor... over and over...
masks and gloves.

 Thanks cousins Jody & Nedra for making the softest blanket EVER! She loves it!

More details when I can think:)

Monday, December 3, 2012


I thought it was strange for someone to blog about such personal issues, until my Mom got sick. 

The doctors at the Huntsman Cancer Institute as well as LDS Hospital have advised us to start a blog. Why?

My beautiful mother has so many people that love her-- and why wouldn't she!? So many people are concerned about her. 
As my mom starts radiation and chemo next week, she won't be able to have visitors. We can't risk her getting sick! Check in here for updates.

*p.s. Glo chose because of her pioneer heritage. It gives her strength to fight like those pioneers! love you mom!
She was trying to play on words with "Willie Fight" - like "will you fight?" - go mom!

I'll let Nate post the upcoming schedule/procedures.