June 30th update

Bennett had a very long day. We left around 6 a.m. and rolled back into Benton just in time to make it to my nieces, Sarah’s Birthday party that started at 6 p.m.

Bennett slept all the way there this morning, slept through most of his procedures and slept all the way back. He was so exhausted.

The Dr. appt went good. His spinal tap aspiration and chemo injected into his spine went well. His back is sore tonight from the procedure and he took some pain medicine.

He had an iv push of vincristine through his port, preventive pneumonia breathing treatment. He also got the IVIG infusion that took about 2 hours. This is immune globin that boosts his B cells that is part of his immune system.

He started steroids again today for the next five days, taking 7 pills daily. I asked the Dr. today if there was anything else he could take to help strengthen his bones and she indicated the calcium supplement is it.

Dr increased his chemo pills to now 75% of his normal dosage instead of the 50%. So he will take 2 6mp pills through the week and 1 1/2 of the weekend.

Dr. looked at his ankle and indicated that he needed to stay off of it and continue the crutches for a total of 6 weeks so he has about 4 weeks left! That sounds better, first she said 2 weeks and that didn’t make sense.

We’re thankful for a safe trip today and that everything went well!

“I prayed to the Lord, and He answered me. He freed me from all my fears.” Psalm 34:4

Posted by Cindy on June 30th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

June 29th update

Amen! Bennett’s ANC today was 2.576 from 2,254 from 10 days ago!! His WBC is 4.6 which stayed the same and his neutrophils are 56 from 49. Yeah! His hemoglobin is at an all time high at 13.1 from 12.9. His platelets did go down a little at 180 from 205. This is really exciting, What a blessing!! We are so thankful that his counts are SO good! Especially with 10 days worth of chemo on top of that, he has been taking 50% less though which was a good idea because we just didn’t know what his counts were going to do.

He had weight lifting this morning. This afternoon the high school baseball team had a game against Fairfield and lost by 2. This will end their summer season. It seemed like they had a lot of games that were canceled and probably only ended up playing 8 or so. It was kinda a relief since Bennett didn’t get to play any, it helped not make it such a disappointment. He enjoyed going and hanging out with the players in the dugout.

Bennett’s ankle is a little swollen tonight. We hadn’t noticed it lately being swollen. We’re thankful it hasn’t been hurting and bothering him. We pray that the stress fracture is healing and he doesn’t have anymore problems with his bones being weaker. He is taking two calcium pills daily, we pray this helps.

We’re thankful that the weather has cooled off, it’s been so beautiful and enjoyable!

Tomorrow is his regular Dr. appt (every 4 weeks), we will leave around 6:00 a.m. His first Dr. appt is at 8:30 and than he has to be at the procedure center at 9:30 for his 10:30 spinal tap. He will be sedated for this procedure so he cannot have anything to eat after midnight until the procedure is over. We will have to go back to clinic for his other chemo given through his port, his breathing treatment and also he will be getting the IVIG infusion again. We hope the day goes good and smooth.

We sang “What A Friend We Have in Jesus” in church on Sunday and the pastor’s sermon was about God’s friendship. I really thought about these words and they really have a new meaning to me than ever before.

What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.

“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13

Posted by Cindy on June 29th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

June 26th update

Bennett is doing good. We are happy to report nothing new! That deserves a Hallelujah!

Bennett has been going to weight lifting three times a week at the high school weight room. He is really proud of his muscles that are finally developing back in his arms. We pray that he doesn’t lose these muscles and other muscles in his body. It is very upsetting to him when he has to regain and start all over. It’s almost like when he kept losing his hair last year.

We go Monday to check his counts, praying for good numbers!! Tuesday is his St. Louis appt and it’s time for his quarterly spinal tap besides all of the other stuff.

His ankle is the same. He really likes wearing the boot and we all think it’s a great idea and normally is very common for Dr.’s to put a stress fracture ankle in a boot so he is going to keep wearing it besides using his crutches.

Hamilton had a late game tonight with his all star team against Carmi in the Benton tourney. We lost. Bennett went to the Miner’s game again tonight, I think this has made their 4th game in 2 weeks.

Thank you for checking in. May God bless you and your family!

We remember all our friends and family that have a new life eternally and our healthy and happy more than ever!

Posted by Cindy on June 26th, 2009 in Updates | 2 Comments

June 24th update

Bennett is doing the same, good! He went to weight lifting this morning. He can’t do very many of the weights but he works on his arms and mostly does curls. Right more he had the MRI, he was jumping on and off a box which is part of the weight lifting program, he said it hurt his ankle but he wanted to start getting into shape. He is so determined and motivated and it really does put a damper on his big dreams for the summer.

It’s only been a week since he has been completely off of it using crutches. We will check with his oncology Dr. again at his appt on Tuesday of how long she suggests him being off of it. I think we should shoot for at least a month and than gradually start putting weight on it.

Hamilton’s baseball team played tonight and we lost 13-6 but finished in 2nd place and had a fun season. Hamilton hit his first inside the park home run for the season. Bennett went to a Miner’s game again tonight with a friend. He says they go to meet and talk to girls. I’m glad he wants to get out and finally do a few things.

“If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me.” Psalm 139: 9-10


You would never guess, who was on the very bottom?

You would never guess, who was on the very bottom?

Posted by Cindy on June 24th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

June 23rd update

Thank you God for answered prayers and keeping our unbelievable brave boy healthy!

Bennett is doing good. He feels good which is a blessing from the previous fatigue he had. He has more energy and is getting that spunk back! Unfortunately he can’t do a whole lot with it with his stress fracture ankle. We are thankful though that it isn’t causing him any pain. The boot he wears really helps.

His baseball team had a double header tonight and they won both games. Bennett went out to the park to watch batting practice around 2:30 and didn’t get home from the games until 10:30, what a long afternoon especially in this heat. He really enjoyed it though, he loves being there.

We’re proud of him for being able to go and sit there in the dugout and just watch. He could be mad about it all but he seems to be doing better of accepting his injury and having to be off of it. We’re thankful for this and pray he can keep his faith and hope.

Hamilton’s in house team played tonight in our tournament and we won by one point!! Yeah! We play tomorrow night for the championship!

Bennett took six methotrexate pills today that he is supposed to take weekly and 1 1/2 pills of the daily 6mp chemo. We pray these chemo pills do what they are supposed to do in keeping all bad cells away.

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

Posted by Cindy on June 23rd, 2009 in Updates | Comments Off on June 23rd update

June 22nd update

“Come, everyone! Clap your hands! Shout to God with joyful praise! For the Lord Most High is awesome. He is the great King of all the earth.” Psalm 47:1-2

Hallelujah! We have had the Best News ever today!!!! No leukemia in Bennett’s bone marrow, He is still in remission!!! We are thanking and praising God for his miracle and love!

Bennett’s ANC today was …………………….. 2,254 from 1,632 three days ago!!! WOW! Unbelievable! His WBC was 4.6 from 3.4 and neutrophils were 49 from 45. His ANC has tripled in one week from 550! Alot of stress, tears, and prayers poured up to God and he answered!

His hemoglobin was 12.9 which is in normal range from 12.3! His platelets are 205 from 240 still in normal range too.

His liver levels were normal, the lowest in a very long time at 28 and 22!!

He has been on 1/2 of his chemo dose, taking 1 pill over the weekend and the rest of the week will take 1 1/2 pills daily. Tomorrow he will take 6 methotrexate pills also. As we increase his chemo dosage we expect his counts to go down and that’s what the Dr. wants. Right now, his ANC is too high but we needed to see his bone marrow make good cells, we’re so thankful! Boy, when it decided to take off, it did quickly! This had marked the fourth week without any chemo, we’re so thankful that he can start taking it again!

The additional spear from his bone biopsy came back clean today, he had all good cells! The Dr. indicated they were looking at recovering B cells but that’s just a different way of saying they were looking one more time for leukemia cells. This is the sixth bone marrow biopsy Bennett has had and it never gets any easier waiting for the results. It gets harder because you know more now and how this could turn our lives upside down again besides the chances of survival.

Bennett went to the Miner’s game tonight with a friend and they are coming back here to spend the night!

Thank you Bennett’s prayer warriors! We won another battle, another fight, and climbed up another hill together, we appreciate your love, support, and prayers!

“For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With His love, He will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” Zephaniah 3:17

Posted by Cindy on June 22nd, 2009 in Updates | 6 Comments

June 21st update

Happy Father’s Day!

Special Father's Day wish to Sid, Gpa Johnston and Gpa Page!

Special Father's Day wish to Sid, Gpa J. and Gpa Page

“Those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

Whew! What a hot weekend! “Bennett’s ankle is doing some better. He isn’t in as much pain from it. He has been wearing his Gpa Page’s medical boot and that seems to be helping. It helps keep it from moving. We pray that Bennett’s ankle heals quickly and his bones become stronger.

He spent yesterday resting, swimming and taking a golf cart rides. He went a couple times by himself and than I went with him later. We saw several deer and the sunset was beautiful!

Today we went to Sunday School and Church and than went to Hamilton’s baseball game in Nashville against Okawville. We won by 9 points. Bennett came home and went to bed, he was really tired.

He has a blood test in the morning, we pray his counts are stable or even better than last week. We should hear the final results from the bone marrow biopsy, and we pray for God’s miracle that it’s great news! May God continue to heal Bennett and keep this awful disease from ever coming back! Amen.

“The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places, and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters never fail.” Isaiah 58:11

Posted by Cindy on June 21st, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

June 19th update

Amen! Bennett’s ANC today was an unbelievable 1,632 from 550 four days ago. His WBC were 3.4 from 2.2 and neutrophils were 45 from 25! Yeah!

His hemoglobin went up too at 12.3 from 10.8 and platelets at 240 from 241, all very good!

We Thank God for answers to our prayers and blessing Bennett with good counts!

We heard from his oncology Dr. and so far they have seen NO leukemia cells from his bone marrow biopsy! Hallelujah!! They are doing an additional spear to study some recovering B cells that was noted, we won’t found out these results until Monday. We are thankful for NO leukemia cells but it’s difficult to get too excited until we know for sure it ALL is okay. Your continued prayers are greatly appreciated.

Bennett can start his daily chemo pills called 6mp (mercaptopurine). He is on 50% of the dosage so he will be taking 1 pill Friday through Sunday. Dr. wants us to check counts again on Monday morning, wouldn’t it be Awesome if his counts continue to rise!

Hamilton had a game tonight at Nashville, IL and we lost 2-7 to 10 year old Nashville team. He plays tomorrow at 2:00.

Bennett has had some pain today with his ankle and it is still swollen. He is moving around really good with his crutches.

Thank you for everyone’s prayers and we ask that you continue. May we hear good news on Monday from the bone marrow biopsy and his blood tests!

“I will bless the Lord who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me. I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, He is right beside me.” Psalm 16:7-8

Posted by Cindy on June 19th, 2009 in Updates | 2 Comments

June 18th update

“Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek Him. Remember the wonders He has performed, His miracles and the rulings He has given.” Psalm 105:4-5

Bennett is doing fair. I called his oncology Dr. today to confirm what we heard yesterday. She said that yes he had a stress fracture and that he needed to stay off of it completely. He needs rest. She wants him to use crutches and not to put any weight on that foot. I asked how long and she said at least two (2) weeks. ?? This doesn’t seem long enough from what I have been reading on stress fractures. The only thing that is going to make it heal, is staying off of it.

He does not need a cast nor a boot but to wrap it with a ace bandage or to wear his ankle braces. She is not going to talk to an orthopedic Dr. she indicated that they wouldn’t be able to do anything different.

Bennett was really miserable last night so I asked about different pain medicine. She indicated he could take tylenol, advil, or ibuprofen but just periodically. He doesn’t need tylenol too often because it can mask a fever and ibuprofen decreases platelet count. Also, he needed to try to keep it elevated as much as possible. Bennett did say that it felt some better.

I asked his Dr. about getting counts again and we will go tomorrow to our local hospital for those in the morning. We pray his ANC is in safe range and high enough to begin chemo. And all other counts are good.

He went to his team’s baseball game tonight and sat in the dugout. He didn’t dress but wanted to go and be with the team. They won.

We hope to find out results tomorrow from the bone marrow biopsy. We pray for a clean healthy result, May God hear our prayers and bless Bennett by keeping him in remission forever and ever!

“We ask God to give you a complete knowledge of His will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit.” Colossians 1:9-10

Posted by Cindy on June 18th, 2009 in General | 1 Comments

June 16th update

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.” Philippians 4:6-7

Bennett had the MRI today on his right ankle. It’s all pretty weird actually. The Dr. that read the MRI was the same one from last year with the left ankle on June 23rd. Almost exactly a year ago. It’s weird that this is the same time frame and he played fall baseball and basketball last year without ankle problems.

He indicated that this MRI of the right ankle looked identical to the left ankle from last year. He pulled up last years and compared. He indicated that his foot bone should be black on the MRI and his is white. This is because he has weak bones, it has been mentioned possibly he has osteopenia. His oncology Dr. indicated this too and indicated it’s very common for leukemia patients that take steroids consistently.

The one difference in the right ankle from today, is that Bennett has a stress fracture in his ankle. We got to see it on the screen, it looks like about an inch crack in his bone. This Dr. indicated that it must be very painful. He called Bennett’s oncology Dr. and she was going to discuss with a orthopaedic Dr. So we don’t know what they are going to recommend yet.

Bennett is very frustrated to say the least. I am actually somewhat surprised that he is this upset and taking the news so hard. I don’t know what he expected but I was thinking it could be even more severe. At least we have an answer this time and don’t have to have a bone biopsy of the ankle and still no answers.

He feels like he was just getting back on his feet and now this has taking him down again. He has had another rough year already. He is in quite a bit of pain; probably the worst pain he has had in awhile. The pain medicine he takes doesn’t help.

He understands that it could be so much worse and I’ve tried to constantly remind him but at the same time not minimizing the pain and disappointment.

We pray that the Dr.’s decide wants going to best for Bennett’s fractured ankle bone and that it heals quickly.

We pray for good results from the bone marrow biopsy! A must!

We pray that Bennett’s counts recover soon so he can start back on his regular chemo plan. His ANC is pretty low, we pray for no sickness either.

We ask for positive attitudes and God to give Bennett signs of encouragement and strength!

“From the ends of the earth, I cry to You for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me.” Psalm 61:2-3

Posted by Cindy on June 17th, 2009 in Updates | 1 Comments

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