Tuesday, May 1, 2012

5 Years Ago Today (Warning: REALLY LONG POST)

You can NOT prepare for the phone call I got 5 years ago this afternoon. It was a Tuesday. I was supposed to be tending my friends kids (they were relaxing in Hawaii and I was going to watch their kids for a day). And then I got 3 of the hardest phone calls of my life.

CANCER - and not just cancer but leukemia. I thought that if Kenyon had leukemia it meant he only had months to live. I had no idea what the treatment options were or what could happen.

But here we are 5 years out and I think we are doing pretty good. Finally. But what a road.

Just for posterity sake and since I didn't blog in the spring of 2007....I will tell a little more of the story. If you are bored - move on.  I'll never know.

In the fall of 2006, Kenyon first started to notice that he was really tired. But he had just finished his MBA, he was in the bishopric in our ward and we had 3 little kids. Of course he was tired. By December he had a lump or knot in his side and he had a nagging cough. Not a terrible cough but it bugged. His brother (an internal medicine doc) suggested that it could be acid reflux and to take an over the counter med. It seemed to work a little bit to help the cough but the knot was getting bigger. On April 28th at a wedding for a nephew he asked his brother to look at his side. I was in a REALLY bad mood that day (not the fault of the bride and groom - the wedding was amazing) and anxious to get the kids home so as I was leaving and his brother pulled me aside and said "I really want to look at him in my office. You make sure he comes up to see me (in Logan)." I had a sense right then that this was serious but no idea it was cancer serious.

So 3 days later on a Tuesday morning he decided to go up and I decided not to go with him because I didn't want to believe it would be that big a deal. And I was tending kids. :)

A few hours later...his brother called me and said that I needed to meet him and Kenyon at St. Marks hospital. All that he would tell me is that there was something wrong with the blood work and he wanted the docs at St. Marks to check him out. A little later I got the WORST call from Kenyon and he said that ugly Leukemia word. They already knew that is what it was but we didn't know what kind or what stage.

Initially it looked like he would take an expensive oral medication for the rest of his life and that would keep the leukemia under control. Four years ago next week we learned that he was too advanced to continue taking that med and that he needed a bone marrow transplant. (But by then I was already pregnant with Quinn and that was a little miracle itself). 

Here is the post from that day. You will notice in that post that I thought we were looking a hard year and then it would be over. Oops. Little did we know it would be 4 years +.

I am so grateful to be in this place and to have made it through it. And most importantly grateful that Kenyon has made it through it all. He is tough. And he doesn't complain much, which is really nice, cuz I do. Sorry. And I am so grateful for so much support, help, love and prayers throughout the endless years (at least it probably seemed that way).

And as some dear friends of ours prepare to be admitted to the hospital for their son's transplant, I am so grateful that I know the Lord answers prayers and will help and strengthen them just as He has done for us. They have already been fighting for a long, long time. And this is an amazing medical miracle - it is a crappy process but it can work. And will for Jake.

PS - You can always go to marrow.org and sign-up to be a donor. You could save a life. For real. Because we are so grateful for all of his siblings being so willing but especially to his brother, Brett - who literally saved his life.


Chris, Amy and the girls said...

Tears are streaming down my face! I love you guys so much! Such strong people with amazing spirits! I count myself blessed to have you for friends! Hooray for the 5 year mark with MANY more to come!!!

Holly C M said...

Great post--good to have a record, however brief, of the story.

You have both impressed me(and your children too).

Meagan@Meagan Tells All said...

I was with Jane in Europe when she got the email. I remember her being really emotional while we were checking emails but didn't want to tell me what was going on. A day of constantly fighting and not knowing what Jane was dealing with, she finally told me. We cried together. It was a hard blow for me too because I just love your family so much and you guys had been so generous to me whenever I came to stay at your house. I am so grateful for mondern day miracles and how the lord has blessed you all. You at such an amazing woman and wife and mother. I truly look up to you as a big sister and love all you Metcalfs so much!!!!

Jane said...

5 years. So nuts. I remember those emails I got while I was in Europe. I got so confused when I saw the Leukemia word. So nuts. I love seeing the picture of you two from Sunday. How far Kenyon has come, how healthy he looks now, and the hell he's been through during these 5 years. And what you've done for him and the kids. Amazing. I liked reading this post.

Christina said...

I feel lucky to know you. You inspire me.

Juliann said...


Shanna said...

Wow. Who would have thought? You guys are awesome!! We love you.