are now in the 2nd week or Gabriel's two week daily chemo
treatments. He has moved passed the sores in his mouth and
bottom and is doing very well.
His treatments began last Monday (Oct 10th)
with a two day stay in the hospital to receive a new chemo
called Cyclophosphamide which they had to flush right away
using an IV of fluids over a 24 hour period to prevent
damage to Gabriel's Kidneys. They also did a spinal tap as
Tuesday (Oct 11th) he began a daily chemo
called Cytarabine which he receives everyday for 8 days
along with a medication named Thioguanine which we give him
at home for 14 days. The daily treatments take a lot out of
him for a few hours but after a short nap, he is back on his
feet and ready to play.
Last Thursday following his chemo treatments
he wanted to go to his brother Michael's high school
football game. At the end of the game, Gabriel and his
brother-in-law Lance were throwing the football and Gabriel
ran a full 100 yards carrying the football to the goal line.
Tuesday (Oct 16th) Gabriel had to get a blood transfusion
along with his daily chemo because the chemo is pushing his
blood counts down. We have 3 days left of this daily routine
which Carol and I are anxious to come to an end. The
hospital is 125 miles round trip everyday and is taking a
bit of a toll on us. It gets very exhausting not to mention
expensive going back and forth everyday. There is light at
the end of the tunnel though. Gabriel is also very anxious
to get the needle out of his port and is counting the
night-nights. The doctors did not want to keep sticking him
everyday, so they accessed his port with the needle and tube
and taped it in place on his chest and only remove it at the
end of each week.
This week will bring to an end the
Delayed Intensification phase. They will do a spinal tap at
the beginning of the next phase which is called "Maintenance
Phase" and begin a new round of treatment but not as intense
as this past phase.
Gabriel's spirits are great. He prays the
rosary with us traveling back and forth from the hospital
and tonight for the first time I heard him recite his
"Guardian Angel Prayer". He has a little stuffed angel that
when you squeeze him a child's voice prays the entire
prayer. Each night before Gabriel goes to sleep he squeezes
it 3 or 4 times. Tonight I heard this little voice praying
"Angel of God my Guardian dear, to whom God's love commits
me here, ever this night be at my side to light and guard
and rule and guide. Amen!"
I had to smile and I thought to myself, the
beauty of innocence that this little boy has and the
strength he has been demonstrating in his spirit can only be
possible by the divine presence of God in his soul.
We count our blessings everyday that God has
lessened what these trials could be. Gabriel has experienced
very little side effects to the chemo. When we were in the
hospital with him last week, there were children there that
could not leave because they could not tolerate the chemo
and were constantly vomiting. Up and down the halls we heard
them at all ages and hours of the night. Gabriel has not
gotten sick once. He receives his chemo treatment, goes to
sleep for a few hours, then is up and about running on a
football field or playing soccer with his brothers. God has
truly heard all of yours and our prayers during this
We thank you for all your
prayers, we know that it is the power of prayer that will see us
all through this. (For
a complete list of updates, see the Index of Updates on the front
page of Gabriel's Website.)
If you have not yet checked out Gabriel's new website, make it a
point to stop by.
God bless you and good night,
"Whenever my enemy
provokes me to combat, I try to behave like a soldier."
St. Therese, the Little Flower
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