Sunday, February 7, 2010

hello again

I must apologize for my long absence from the blog world. I know your wondering where I've disappeared to and I have heard from more than one person that they are getting sick of seeing Urban Chickens every time they check in here! I feel like I owe you an explanation. It was a crazy few months for us. The holidays are always very busy in my family, because almost everybody's birthday is in December. This year we started it all off right after Thanksgiving with a big family gathering. It was the first time ever that my whole family with all our new members have all been together at the same time! In the last year our family has grown significantly, with Laura and Wayne getting married and the birth of Julie and Davie's first child, Ayana. We managed to get a family photo with everybody in it! That's a big feat for us, he last family photo we have is from when Lily was a baby and has only 6 people in it!

Days after this gathering, we started off December with the very scary news that my then three month old niece, Ayana had a tumor on her adrenal gland. She had a very large belly so an Ultrasound was ordered and from that it was immediately obvious that she has a tumor and was admitted to Devos Children's Hospital. She underwent many tests and a biopsy. The diagnosis was a Neuroblastoma. Cancer. Needless to say it was an overwhelming time and there were lots of ups and downs, but she is an amazing little girl. She has the sweetest temperament and is just truly a happy baby. It was hard not to feel optimistic when she was smiling at you. She even learned to giggle while there!

Thankfully the tests came back well enough that she was sent home after only one week in the hospital. Rather than to pursue Chemo and other treatments the doctor thought it should just be monitored and observed. She sees the oncologist once a month and will have a CT or MRI every three months, but since leaving the hospital, all signs are showing that the tumor is shrinking! This strange form of cancer has been known to do that, but it is rare that it is not treated with Chemo. Her belly is significantly smaller and she is still acting completely healthy. Praise our Father!

Here's some recent photos of my girls with Ayana, or as Daisy calls her, "Ayana Baby":

The girls have my mom's baby buggy from when she was a little girl. We just got it out of storage the other day. They love pushing their baby's in it, but always long for a real baby to play with in it because they have heard the story about how when I was 8 and my sister Laura was 5 and baby Julie came along we used to push her around in it. When Julie stopped over the other day with Ayana, you should have seen the excitement in Rosie's eyes!

We let her try it out for a moment, very supervised! But Ayana looked a little overwhelmed!

So stay tuned, I'll try to keep up on the posting! I've got lots to fill you in on! I pray your having a peaceful winter and staying warm. Blessings!


Ma Hammar said...

It's fun to read your blog again.
I especially like the pictures of such cute girls! Love you!

Sara said...

Cute cute cute! I'm so glad Ayana is stable and praying that things continue to improve!!

buebau said...

I'm really happy your beautiful niece is better now. It seems that you Christmas wish has come true. Do you remember this ?

All the best for your happy niece!