Silver Lining: noun. A hopeful or comforting prospect in the midst of difficulty.

Monday, September 5, 2011

hi this is morgan olivia and me went to the red sox and olivia was bat girl and she got to were the world seres ring and she wore there helmets

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

First Day of Summer

It's been a long time since Olivia or I last posted. Since the end of treatment, we have been busy processing what we've just been through and adjusting back to "normal" life. After a very short 3 months, we found ourselves back at the Jimmy Fund Clinic yesterday for Olivia's 3 month appt. We are very, very happy to announce that the scans were all perfectly clear!

I personally am looking forward to a very relaxing and uneventful summer. Olivia, on the other hand, is understandably very focused on her leg and her desire to get off crutches. In May she saw Dr. Gebhardt (orthopedic surgeon) and was very disappointed to find that the bone was not yet healed. The good news, however, is that it is healing well and it is farther along than he expected. Olivia did not take a lot of consolation in that, reminding us that she's been on crutches for over a year. He then told her she could get around the house without them, but he was not ready to let her "cruise all over the place" without them. Our next appt. with Dr. Gebhardt is next week. We already know, because x-rays were taken of her leg yesterday, that the leg is still not fully healed. We could see a lot of improvement from the last x-ray, however, so we will keep our fingers crossed about those crutches.

Will post again after her appt. with Dr. Gebhardt. Happy Summer!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Hey Guys,

It's Olivia. Sorry I haven't written in a while. I have been so busy. My mom said she would put the pictures up from Spring Training but never did so it's up to me I guess! :) Some of the photos that I put up after the Spring Training ones are just to show you me after treatment:)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Scans Are Clear!

Great news on Wednesday -- Olivia's chest CT and bone scans are clear!

Now we'll focus on keeping it that way. The oncologists will monitor her every three months for the first year, then every six months, then once a year. She'll also be referred to Infectious Disease (my favorite people, aka the people who swore she wasn't allergic to the antibiotic that caused her rash) so that they can prescribe an antibiotic that she will be on for the next year to fight any infection that might set in in her leg.

In the meantime, Olivia returned to school a week and a half ago and it couldn't have been an easier transition. The school is very accommodating and the kids gave her a very warm welcome. This is her first year attending this school -- she went from a school of about 70 kids to 700+. I knew things were fine when, about midday on the second day, I received a garbled text from her asking if she could stay at school until 8:00pm for the volleyball marathon (no, she wouldn't be playing but she wanted to stay, watch, and help keep score). It was as if she had been going to school there all year.

She is moving slowly along with PT. The bone is still not fully healed (chemo slows it down) and until it is, she needs to use the crutches. But she is getting stronger and stronger everyday and she no longer needs the brace.

Next weekend is the trip to Spring Training. Will post pictures when she gets back. Enjoy the spring weather.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Disconnected after...

...32 infusions of chemotherapy
...4 surgeries
...8 weeks IV antibiotics
...2 fevers
...1 rash
...numerous scans/ tests: CT, MRI, x-rays, echo, hearing
...TMTC nights in CH/ days at JFC

And Olivia is done!

It was a long day at the clinic on Friday since the first blood test results showed that the level of methotrexate was too high to stop hydration. It was early enough in the day, however, that we decided to stick around and take another test later in the day. After having Olivia drink a few bottles of water, they took another sample. It worked!

Although the end of treatment is a HUGE milestone, Olivia still needs to have post-treatment scans before we can fully celebrate. Those will be done in a couple of weeks, and then every 3 mos. after that. In the meantime, however, her leg will finally be able to fully heal and she can focus on PT and becoming crutch-free. She's planning to go back to school in a couple of weeks and is looking forward to the Red Sox spring training. Maybe we'll be seeing a little sun by then too.

Thanks for your support, prayers, and good thoughts. Will let you know how the scans go.
From all of us,
Chris, Michele, Olivia, and Morgan

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Operation Bieber... underway!

First, an update. Olivia started the last two rounds of chemo last Monday. These two weeks are the dreaded "hydrating" weeks, which means that after an all-day infusion (including blood tests, pre-meds, and chemo), Olivia goes home hooked up to 24 hours of IV fluid. We then go back each day to clinic to check the chemo levels in her blood and replenish the fluid until the chemo is cleared from her system. Last week she cleared in 72 hours, and we are now on Day 2 of her LAST week of the same routine. SO YESTERDAY OLIVIA HAD HER LAST CHEMO TREATMENT!!! YEA!!! We won't start the celebration yet, though. It's not over until the bag is no longer hanging off her shoulder.

Now back to Bieber.

Last week, during one of the daily trips to clinic, Olivia got the idea that Justin Beiber should visit the children at the Jimmy Fund Clinic. She mentioned the idea to Jen Noonan (pictured with Olivia -- the most wonderful, most fantastic adolescent specialist at the JFC) and the two of them went off to conspire how they would pull this off. First, Olivia wrote a very thoughtful and creative letter telling Justin why he should visit. As they revised and edited the letter, and planned how they will present it with pictures, decorations, etc., Jen got the idea that they should also include a CD of them singing one of Justin Beiber's songs. She brought the clinic's music therapist on board, and today Jen and a group of kids (including Peter, who came to clinic with us today) sang the lyrics to "Never Say Never." The CD evolved into a DVD and will include Olivia reading her letter aloud at the end of the song. Other kids are also writing letters to include in the package.

How can he refuse?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Home Stretch

When we started this blog, we vowed to keep the posts positive, and to focus on the things that were going well even when we hit a low point. With the exception of my frustration with EVERYONE regarding the rash (no, I'm still not completely over it), we've been fortunate to always have had something positive to focus on. This is not the case for everyone who goes through this, and it is at those times when we hear about someone who has recently been diagnosed, that someone's cancer has spread, or that a friend has passed because of this disease, that we realize how truly lucky and blessed we are. We also realize (again) how vulnerable we are. We know that things could turn on a dime.

So we approach these last two weeks in great, but tempered, spirits. We are still in "break" because Olivia's counts were not high enough to have chemo on Monday. But she is fever-free and the counts are on the way up. She is keeping up with school work, having PT, and exercising at home. We'll return to clinic on Monday for the 1st of the two remaining treatments.

Olivia has also finally agreed (more like caved in to my badgering) to let me tell her "wish." Not sure why she's been holding out -- must be the 13 in her. We are going to visit the set of Glee and meet the cast! Morgan has never seen the show, but she's been dying to tell everyone that she's going to "hollywood!" Two wishes in one. They both deserve it.