We Pray

Written by Mardon Hickford. Posted in Mom's Blog

While yesterday blind-sided us in a big way, I think we both felt that there was something wrong. Wrong in a big way.  You know when your children don’t feel well.  Call it a mother’s intuition, a gut feeling… you just know.  Last night we prayed, and we cried, and we decided that this morning we would go to church as a family and pray some more.  We took the kids out of school this morning so that we could go meet our Pastors and go into the sanctuary and pray over Jake.  As a family, we stood there holding hands around the Baptismal font while our Pastors led us in prayer and we asked God to protect him, to give us answers, to guide us, to comfort us and provide peace… to heal him. It was beautiful and perfect and we gave him to Jesus once more, just the way we did 4 years ago.  This is is His battle to fight, He will carry Jake, and we will follow.

The Day Our World Changed

Written by Mardon Hickford. Posted in Mom's Blog

I’ll start by backing up. We had a great summer. We played, swam, hit Kemah, did all the things you do with lots of kids. However, throughout the summer, we had boughts of low grade fevers off and on with Jake. He complained of his legs hurting from time to time and as the summer progressed, the leg pain became more consitent. He complained of both legs but it was really the left leg more than the other. He’d state it, seem a little uncomfortable, then bounce around like a normal four year old, swimming, playing with Gunner, riding his bike, rough-housing with his brothers. He also complained of tummy aches but they’d disappear a few hours after he mentioned them. His appatite started to change but nothing unusual. Four year old boys begin to get a little more picky and naturally, they like to voice some kind of control over what they can and can not do… typically that means food choices. Henry noticed that when he ran a temp, his tummy and back would feel really hot but his head would register about 100 – nothing worrisome but kind of strange. We have a LOT of kids, we have a LOT of little bugs come through the house, and just about the time we would be ready to take him into the pedi, he was all better. Then the second week of September, he had bad tummy aches, higher fever, some type of bug… we thought. BUT the next weekend his tummy dissented, he was miserable, and we couldn’t knock out the fever. He really complained of the leg pain and pelvic pain. He cried and cried and we thought he was constipated. He was clearly in pain and he wasn’t himself. Our “all boy”, boy, was not right. Then the tummy went down, the fever subsided (sort of) and that was it. Back to normal – sort of. He still didn’t look right and he still complained of his legs and belly but he would play and wanted to go to school. We seemed to be on the mend but we could tell that he just wasn’t right. We headed into the pedi.

As we sat there talking to Dr. Wong, she listened, really listened. She wanted to do blood work. We agreed. We also wanted to x-ray his leg. She sent us down for blood work – they came back

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pretty good. Anemic but OK. We continued to tell her about the legs and she sent us down for an x-ray and to lunch. We came back and she was ready for us. She said,”From everything that we discussed I was afraid it was Lukemia. It’s not. But there is a tumer. It’s in his leg and I’ve already called Texas Children’s. We need to get you there and I’m waiting on their call”.

I remember falling backward off of a swing when I was a little girl and having the wind knocked out of me… that’s what it felt like. Jake in my lap, I had to tell myself to take a breath. Tumor. Texas Children’s. Oncology. Possibly Osteosarcoma. Cancer. Those were all words I remember her saying, I can’t even remember how or in what context… but our world was changed that day. That was Thursday and we were scheduled to be at Tx Children’s on Monday – that fast!