Chicago Trip

Navy Pier along Lake Michigan

Navy Pier along Lake Michigan

View at Navy Pier

View at Navy Pier

Navy Pier

Navy Pier

Hamilton at Shedd Aquarium

Hamilton at Shedd Aquarium

View from Aquarium of Navy Pier

View from Aquarium of Navy Pier

Bennett and Hamilton at Aquarium

Bennett and Hamilton at Aquarium

Outside of Wrigley Field

Outside of Wrigley Field

Bennett & Hamilton at Cubs game

Bennett & Hamilton at Cubs game

Wrigley Field

Wrigley Field

Cubbies WIN!

Cubbies WIN!

Posted by Cindy on May 31st, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

May 31st update

Bennett is doing good. He felt pretty good on our trip to Chicago. We had a busy weekend and we did a lot of walking. He ate all the time, his appetite has been really good! We have a bet that he thinks at his Dr. appt Tuesday, he will weigh 135, gaining back all his weight that he lost, I hope his right.

On Friday, we went to Navy Pier, Lake Michigan was beautiful. We ate at Bubba Gumps and Billy Goats. We went to Shedd Aquarium which we were a little disappointed that there wasn’t more sea creatures and exhibits. We took the water taxi (boat) across the water back to Navy Pier. Friday night, we went to Dave and Buster’s and we were surprised that St. Louis is bigger.

The game was Awesome on Saturday, we ate at Harry Carry’s at Wrigleyville. The Cubs won 7 to 0 against the Dodgers. Our seats were good, we really had a good view. That night we ate at Mike Ditka’s, it was good.

It’s good to be home, we go in the morning to our local hospital to check Bennett’s counts. We pray that his platelets are up and all other counts are in safe range. We need his liver levels to be in normal range. They have been extremely high for 3 weeks now.

It was nice not having to worry about Bennett taking any chemo pills on the trip but we pray that his counts are good enough to begin taking them again. We were thankful he didn’t have any complaints this weekend, it’s the first time in a long time that he hasn’t had to take some kind of medicine to relieve side effects!

“You shall go out with joy and be led out with peace; the mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” Isaiah 55:12

Posted by Cindy on May 31st, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on May 31st update

May 28th update

Bennett’s ANC today is 936 from 880 three days ago. His WBC was 1.8 from 1.6 and neutrophils were 52 from 55. His hemoglobin was 9.4 from 10.5. Platelets were 35 from 39. The Dr. wanted to do a platelet transfusion if his platelets were 30 or below or he was still having nose bleeds. He hasn’t had a nose bleed since Monday so that’s good and we are so thankful. So, we didn’t have to make a quick trip to St. Louis. We will be going next Tuesday, it’s already time for his monthly chemo appt.

The Dr. also ordered a PT, PTT blood test which is protime test to tell how soon your blood will clot. One test was normal and the other was a little high but the Dr. was okay with the results. We also heard back from the test of how Bennett’s body metabolizes the 6mp (mercaptopurine) chemo pill and it came back normal. This is good but Dr. wondered if this could be some of the reason that Bennett’s counts are jumping around.

Bennett felt pretty good yesterday. He went with his cousins Lindsay and Isaiah to Gma/pa Johnston. And his other cousins Drew, Sarah, and Briely were there too. They had a good day looking at the baby puppies, baby rabbits, baby chickens, baby pigeons, and baby calves.

This morning he went and walked two holes of golf. He gets pretty tired after couple holes. He has been sleeping better the last two nights, Yeah! He is also looking forward to the summer baseball season. The first game is about a week and half away. We pray that he can play and edure the physical activity.

We are looking forward to a family fun weekend in Chicago! We’re going to the Cubs game on Saturday that will be nationally televised. Sid is a Cubs fan and has never been to a game, well, none of us have but we’re not the Big Cub fan that he is. We are praying for a relaxing enjoyable weekend with no surprises!

May God continue to bless Bennett, we pray that his platelet count goes up and his other counts stay stable. We pray that he will continue to gain strength and will soon be able to run around with so much energy that he doesn’t know what to do with it all! Have a blessed weekend!

Posted by Cindy on May 28th, 2009 in Updates | 3 Comments

May 26th update

Bennett is doing fair. He woke up this morning with a headache. He felt nauseated to his stomach and also got sick. He took some tylenol and some nausea medicine.

He had big plans today and I know a headache and his stomach bothering him wasn’t going to stop him. He went to lunch with Brittani Shurtz Nolen and they ate at Red Lobster! Yum! Bennett really enjoyed lunch and visiting the afternoon with Brittani.

Bennett went with us to Hamilton’s All Star baseball game in Pinkneyville, we tied the first game and never made it to the second game because the ball field lights wouldn’t come on.

Bennett’s main oncology Dr. called me today about his counts. She has taken him off all chemo pills until his platelets are 50 or more. So he missed his weekly dose of methotrexate and his daily 6mp pills. She does not know why his platelets have all the sudden started dropping since he hasn’t had any different chemo medicines since he started the maintenance phase last year.

She already assured me she doesn’t think it is the leukemia returning. She knows me well enough now that she answers that question before I even ask. She felt like since his hemoglobin and ANC numbers were maintaining and/or rising that it must be chemo induced.

Dr. does want a CBC blood test on Thursday to verify where his platelets are. If they are below 30 than she wants him to have a platelet transfusion since he has been having nose bleeds. If his platelets count is over 50 than he can start back on his daily chemo pills. Between 30 and 50 we will do nothing and wait until Monday to check them again. It does make me nervous when they get this low especially since they haven’t been this low in over 15 months.

We are supposed to leave Thursday night for Chicago for a family trip to see the Cubs play but we maybe making a trip to St. Louis first to have Bennett transfused with platelets.

We pray Bennett’s platelets rise and that his liver levels go down. It seems we are still trying to balance this all out and we pray that he gets to feeling better soon.

“Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass.” Psalm 37:5

Posted by Cindy on May 26th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on May 26th update

Everything that…..

I believe that everything happens for a reason. If you think to yourself and think about everything that has happened in your life. God has planned everything that has happened in our lives.

If we knew WHY things happen? God does, and it makes us stronger. We need to believe that it happened to make us a better person.

We are all doing God’s will when we wake up every day and not sin and when we help people out.

God already has our lives already planned out and what is going to happen to us. Whether we like it or not.

Everything is for a reason. At times people get scared and forget what they are doing. Or forget what they need to do.

Because sometimes living can be overwhelming at times. In one minute everything could change and you wonder, Why am I doing this?

Why do I have to live and go through this? BUT everything that doesn’t kill us, can only make us stronger. Well, this is the reason I wrote this.

The last 2 years of my life have been the best times of my life! A lot of things have happened to me more than most people go through their entire life and I’ve done it in just two years!

I went up against death when most people don’t have to deal with that until it’s their time to leave us.

When I get sick and lose all my muscle and hand and eye coordination, this is one of the biggest things. Some people don’t think about that but athletes do.

I think about Jon Lester that had cancer and came back and played as a pitcher in the MLB. Most people think of Lance Armstrong. They didn’t have to take chemo every day.

There is ups and down when playing sports and trying to get back on your feet. Not knowing which day is going to come when you are going to be knocked down on your knees again.

That’s why I don’t take anything for granted and live life to it’s fullest! And Thank God for every minute.

Two years ago when the Dr. told me the news, I did not cry but was scared. I knew right than, this is happening for a reason.

God is going to take care of me. It’s all going to be fine. There is not a stronger thing to think about than this.

Most people would have cried their eyes out and would have freaked out. This is one thing I always think about every night since then.

I ask myself, What does God want me to get out of this? I think I have figured some stuff out.

I know I have a year left of treatment and anything could happen between now and then.

But most people would not think this but, I’m thankful that God gave me cancer. I have learned so much and have got to do things I would have never done.

Even though I am a young man and only been here for 15 years, I think I am more mature then most men and women that have been here for a longer time.

Just because I have learned from life to: Be Strong, Help People, Do Everything To The Max Because You Don’t Know If It Will Be Your Last.

I feel like I have grown up in the last two years. I thank God for giving me the chance to do just that. Even though some times things have been against me, I have just learned to deal with it and live life!

I believe everything happens for a reason…………………………

Bennett Page
May 24, 2009

Posted by Bennett on May 25th, 2009 in Inspiration, Updates | 3 Comments

May 25th update

Bennett’s ANC today was 880 from 780 last week. His WBC were 1.6 from 1.3 and neutrophils were 55 from 60. His hemoglobin was 10.5 from 10.2. His platelets are only 39 from 69, they have been dropping gradually each time.

I will check with St. Louis tomorrow to see Dr. wants to continue his chemo pills. I’m wondering if his platelets are too low to continue on the chemotherapy plan. Also, his liver levels are still really high, they are a little higher than last week at now 176 and 475. The bilirubin total (part of the liver level) is what they have been watching too and it’s now 1.50 and last week was .80.

Bennett could not sleep last night at all. He sat outside for a couple hours writing until about 3 a.m. He slept this morning until about 10 a.m. and than we went to the hospital to check labs. He has been really tired today.

He has had two nose bleeds. One lasted for 20 minutes, I feel sorry for him, it’s aggravating for no reason to have blood just start coming out your nose. I’ll mention it to the nurse again tomorrow, last week they indicated because his platelets are lower.

Bennett went to the golf course and walked a couple holes of golf. He has been really wanting to go and today he just pushed himself.

Even though his ANC is low, we are going to go to the movies, hoping not very many people are there to see the Night of the Museum 2.

We pray that Bennett’s platelet counts go up soon and that his nose bleeds stop. We pray that he can start sleeping at night. Thank you for checking in. Hope everyone had an enjoyable holiday weekend.

On this Memorial Day, we remember all of our 9west angels, all the angels that have fought cancer, the fallen soldiers that have fought for our country, and all of our loved ones! God Bless!

Posted by Cindy on May 25th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on May 25th update

8th Grade Graduation!

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Posted by Cindy on May 23rd, 2009 in General, Updates | 2 Comments

May 23rd update

Whew! What a great few days we have had! Bennett is doing so much better! He felt pretty good Friday and took it easy so he could save his strength for graduation.

He said at graduation ceremony, he was a little nervous since he hadn’t practiced, he did fine. I was a little nervous or emotional, I thought any minute I could break out in a big cry or a big Whoo Hoo! We wondered two years ago if we were going to see this day.

We are so proud of Bennett. He was one out of thirty-seven 8th graders that was an honor student and I believe there is 132 total students! What an accomplishment! He wore his golden honor’s cord with pride.

He was so happy and he had a different spark about him last night. He said his drillion was so high and had a lot of fun. He went to the graduation party for about an hour and half. He didn’t dance but he did play basketball for a few minutes.

Today, was one of the best days for him in a very long time! He went to Hamilton’s baseball game at noon and we won by one point!

And he hung out with a bunch of old friends that he hadn’t spent any time with in a very long time! This is the first time this year that I can remember that he hung out with friends and actually did teenage stuff! He is so happy and can’t quit talking about how much fun he had this afternoon!

We are so thankful and praising God! Boy, do we hope this is a break through and he is over the issues he had with the sinusitis! What a blessing that would be!

Posted by Cindy on May 23rd, 2009 in Updates | 2 Comments

May 21st update

Bennett has just a little more energy the last two days. He is finally getting out of bed. He has been sleeping better at night! Last night he feel asleep around midnight but woke up at 6:00 a.m. and couldn’t get back to sleep. He has been jogging the last few nights down the road and back. We were hoping this would make him more physically tired and help go to sleep sooner. He is trying to push himself and try anything so he doesn’t have to use drugs to get to sleep.

Yesterday he went to eat lunch with his Aunt Annette and Uncle Ron. I think this has been the first time in awhile that he has gotten out for lunch. He mostly had been eating lunch in bed.

He did feel like getting up earlier than normal and went on a golf cart ride. He went to Gpa/Gma P. for lunch. He seems to be eating a little better. He is eating more frequent and is actually getting hungry. He sat outside for awhile just enjoying the sunshine. He said he was such a beautiful day. He did about 30 minutes of work outside picking up leaves and pulling weeds! Wow!

Bennett had another nose bleed today. He said it didn’t last very long. He also got sick to his stomach after he ate some pizza. He took some zofran and so far hasn’t been sick again. This seems kinda strange, of what is causing an upset stomach.

Bennett is planning on going to the 8th grade graduation ceremony. He is going to rest up tomorrow and not do as much as he did today. He is not sure about attending the 8th grade party afterwards. He said he is going to wait to see how he feels after the ceremony. I hope he can go for a little bit just to see everything decorated and visit with his friends.

We are so thankful that he is doing a little better. We pray/hope that it continues and he keeps improving each day. We will check his counts again on Monday, we pray that their all in safe range.
May God bless you and your family!

Posted by Cindy on May 21st, 2009 in Updates | 6 Comments

May 19th update

Yeah! Bennett slept all night last night! He had to take a pain pill and benadryl to help him get to sleep. He woke up this morning around 9:30! Wow! This is the earliest he has been up in a long time. Boy, What a good night sleep, can do! We pray tonight is another good night for him!

He was laying in bed this morning and his nose started bleeding. He had trouble getting it stopped, he text ed me immediately. I called St Louis and his nurse indicated it’s probably from his low platelets but we shouldn’t need to check his platelet count again until Monday unless the nose bleeds continue. We pray his platelets are not too low and need a transfusion. They are low enough that he needs to be careful with activity but were safe with that because he doesn’t feel good enough to be jumping around or riding his dirt bike. Platelets help clot your blood so you don’t bleed to death so he doesn’t need to be doing anything that could cause danger or bleeding.

Bennett seemed to have a little more energy today. He played his playstation 3 games more today and talked more. He even went to town today with Gma J to run a few errands, he was craving donuts and he ate 2!

Tonight, he went to Hamilton’s all star practice and to Drew’s game. Hamilton made the all star traveling baseball team. So currently he is playing on two teams. We also took a drive in his cousins JJ jeep. He thought that was pretty cool. I am so happy that he is up to doing a few things extra.

Today, was such a blessing and a answer to prayers. He still has a long ways to go but this is the first day in about a week that we have seen a slight improvement. He felt this good about 1 1/2 weeks ago and it seemed it took a turn for the worse so we hope/pray we are on the upward trend and no turning back!

Thank you for your love, support, comments and most of all prayers!

Posted by Cindy on May 19th, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on May 19th update

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