Reevaluating the Post-Transplant Relapse

While we were at St. Jude in February we sent off another sample of John’s peripheral blood for deep sequencing AND forwarded a specimen from June 2015 (post-transplant relapse).  They were both NEGATIVE for residual leukemia – meaning, John is in REMISSION and he officially did NOT relapse this past summer. 

STJ pathology has begun the process of amending all MRD results from June 2015 through the present to represent MRD NEGATIVE.

I don’t want to speak for John; this information is a lot for a young man to process.  He has a lot of healing to do – emotionally and physically.

I am overwhelmed with emotions.  I’m feeling:

HOPEFUL – that I can allow myself to dream of John’s future again. 

THANKFUL – that John is treated at a hospital that isn’t afraid to ask other institutions, doctors & labs for their opinions and assistance in diagnosing and treating John.  I appreciate STJ’s transparency during this process.

GRATEFUL – that I stuck to my guns and didn’t allow any further treatment. 

SAD – that I planned John’s funeral and that I broke my friend’s hearts by asking them to help me with those details.

ANGRY – that I told John, my family, our friends and our supporters that John’s cancer had returned when in fact it did not.

DEVESTATED – that I told my son he was dying.  No, telling him that he is living (for now) doesn’t help fade that memory.  I can’t take that conversation back.

AFRAID – that it’s only a matter of time before his leukemia returns or he suffers from further complications from his transplant.

OVERWHELMED – with the task of moving forward given all that has happened over last four years.

I pray over time I can reign in some of these feelings and just focus on the gifts that every day brings. 

Thank you for your continued prayers. 


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