Grow cells grow!

Five weeks post transplant and I guess many of you are wondering about engraftment.  Well so am I, hence the silence hitherto.  I can, though, now report that Fabian’s blood count hit the all-important 2.0 WBC level but promptly dropped back once they reduced his GCSF dose which is given to artificially boost the WBC.  Remember the chant – ‘Grow cells grow’.  No-one on staff is particularly worried as he has been doing really well clinically and they are not counting the days, as we do.  One sure sign that the new stem cells are engrafting is the recent onset of GvHD which in Fabian’s case means he has a nasty all-over itchy skin rash.  He looks a sorry sight in the buff but there is a lot in the medical armoury to relieve the discomfort, mainly steroid creams and we are hoping the rash will dissipate in due course.  Today was bone marrow aspirate day and we’ll know by Friday whether his MRD has remained negligible meaning no further development of leukaemia since the last round of chemo.  Please pray for an MRD negative reading!

Life in room 6 continues into the 7th week for Lydia and Fabian.  I am surprised they have not been etching the days into the wall, as prisoners do.  Other families have come and gone, not all with positive outcomes sadly.  The parents room is a place where hopes and fears are shared and one cannot help feeling a tinge of guilt if ones’ own child is doing better than another.  The isolation restrictions are continuing but are somewhat ‘relaxed’ at the weekend when a certain Sister is not on duty!  For example, visitors can sneak onto the ward and view loved ones through the glass and talk to them via intercom.  Cassia did this and she and Fabian placed their hands together through the glass à la Kirk-Spock movie style.  We’re hoping for a release date in the next couple of weeks subject to many variables most of which we cannot predict or control.  And that reminds me about Jesus’ words not to worry about tomorrow (Matt 6:34).

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