Monday, March 30, 2009

On the Road Again :-)

Here we go, on the road again to her recovery. We will continue on tomorrow at 6:30 am for her IT MTX, chemo in the spine, to an admit for high dose Methotrexate and Vincristine, both chemo's for the next four days. We should get out on Sat.

We are so elated to move forward. The delays were extremely hard on us/me. I know God knows best but sometime I wish he would listen to me..haha....just kidding. I could really mess up this world.

Thanks you to all who read this blog and pray for whatever request I post on Liz's behalf. You know as well as everyone in the Lothrop family that God does answer prayers.

You will never know the depth of my gratitude for your prayers and support. It is one of the most beautiful experiences I have ever been a part of or felt deep inside.

May God bless you and comfort you as he does the Lothrop family.


Sunday, March 29, 2009

Gary's and LaRosa's

I hope all the students and teachers have taken advantage of the wonderful "March Madness" at Gary's Barber Shop on Main Street in Mason. Every Wednesday in March they have been giving $3.00 haircuts to students and teachers. The money made goes to their own, Joel Brown, Elizabeth Lothrop, and Kortney Snyder. All three kids attend the Mason Schools. Randy has gotten his hair cut there for the past 14 years and now takes our son, Jim. Thanks to all who work there and make it possible.

Another fundraiser is LaRosa's. The entire day, April 1, LaRosa's will be giving 20% of your bill back to these three wonderful kids. If you go back at dinner they will even give an additional percentage off, just show your receipt from earlier. Once again, here is our community doing what it does best; giving back to their community. Thanks LaRosa's. Print off the coupon and take it in with you when you dine in or carry out.

I pray that Gary's will get some new lasting business from this and that LaRosa's will also gain new customers. God does bless those who give. Thank you for your generosity to our families.



Friday, March 27, 2009

Plan 1 or Plan 2

We spent the morning in clinic. Liz had to have her pentaimine treatment. This keeps her airways clean, clear, and is a preventative against pneumonia. She also had to have her port de-accessed. Her ANC's are too low to keep her accessed when she is not receiving chemo; infection can set in easily.

Dr. Absalon, her primary doctor, came in for her physical and talked to us about her counts and the game plan. All level markers indicate that her counts should be going up but instead her ANCs keeps going down. Dr. Absalon feels it could be due to her chemo pill, the 6MP or a possible virus in her bone marrow. It is not uncommon for this pill to be dosed out in different mg. The 6MP is the main staple in her maintenance program.

Plan 1:
I will take her to Children's Outpatient at Liberty, Monday morning for blood work, by noon on Monday we should know if we are a go for Tuesday. Tuesday she will need to be in clinic at 6:30 am for an LP. They will remove fluid from her spine and input chemo into that space. The fluid removed will be sent to lab for examination. This is a check which has been done since the beginning of her diagnoses to make sure there is not cancer in the central nervous system (CNS). Liz will then be admitted for the beginning of her High Dose Methotrexate.

Plan 2:
However, if her counts are not up we will exchange her LP for a bone marrow biopsy. The docs will need to make sure that there is not a virus in her bone marrow. Dr. Absalon said the only way to know if there is is through a bone marrow biopsy. If she has a virus she will be admitted. The docs have a host of options in treatment for this if this is the case. Which treatment????????? You will know when I know so hang in there :)

I must say that having some sort of a "game plan" or direction is much more comforting to me. Whether or not we move on with her protocol on Tuesday or take a detour with a virus in her bone marrow, I am glad that God is giving me a reprieve in my needless worrying. Needless in the respect that I know God has my back and he is my strength and rock through good and bad times. I need to remember to drop my worries at the foot of the cross and let him carry my yoke.

Thank you for praying for my strength. I am back in the saddle and ready for the ride,

Please pray for:
All children/families on A5 South
Counts to go up.
No virus in her bone marrow.
Continued mental and physical strength.
Cold to go AWAY!

I love all of you and I thank you for your prayers, friendship, and support of my family.

God Bless,

Thursday, March 26, 2009

UGH !!!!!!!!!!!! My frustration

Sorry to deliver the bad news ..... Elizabeth is still a no go for her four day admit tomorrow. Her ANC (immune system) has taken another drop. When she left the hospital 15 days ago her ANC was 2380, she dropped to 510 and now down to 420. She can not be around anyone at this time. Please pray because I took her to school today for the Student of the Month. I had myself convinced that she would be ready to go for tomorrow. We will go down to clinic for her breathing treatment, physical, and de-accessing her port. This treatment is to prevent pneumonia.

Please please please pray that she is able to continue on this coming Tuesday.


Student of the Month

We just came back from the Middle School where Liz was honored as one of Team Unities "Student of the Month". The key word for the students this month is Determination. The team teachers had wonderful things to say about Elizabeth and it was good for her to get out. We could not stay because the home care nurse is coming out at 8:30 am to access her port and draw blood for testing to see if we can continue on in the Interim Phase I protocol.

Please pray that we can move forward and not delayed any longer. Every person has cancer cells in the body. These cancer cells do not show up in the standard tests until they have multiplied to a few billion. When doctors tell cancer patients that there are no more cancer cells in their bodies after treatment, it just means the cells have been destroyed into undetectable sizes. This is why the protocol is 2 to 2.5 years long and this is why the delays scare me. I just wonder what type of party the cancer cells are having inside her while the chemo is on hold. Are they gathering and new cells being created? Will she slip out of remission? How much work has she and her team of doctors done that is being undone during this delay? It is proven that if treatment were to stop now, her cancer would reappear. I know God is in control and I trust him with everything but sometimes it is hard to drop all your worries at the foot of the cross. Please pray that I can do this because worries like these are unproductive.

I will post again today to let you know if we are a go. I have positive thoughts on this and I believe we will be a go.

Pray for:
Worries to ease.
Cold to go away.
Counts to go up.
Minimal side effects.
No Party inside her body.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

And Counting.......

I just got off the phone with the Fellow, Dr. Fitzgerald, and we are not able to start on Mon. or Tues. Her platelets are 74k and need to be 75k, her ANC needs to be 750 and is 510. Elizabeth's ANC dropped from 2380 to 510. Dr. Fitzgerald said it is partly due to the fact that she has a virus/cold. She said this will take her immune system down quickly because it is already weak.

Unfortunately she will not be able to have any visitors. Her body is still trying to fight this cold and now her immune system is critically low and can not even fight off her own Bactria. She will need as much sleep as possible. This is tough to do because her hemoglobin level is 12.4, the highest it has been since she was diagnose Oct. 25. A normal low is 12....YEAH for Liz!

Please pray that we can move forward in her treatment as soon as possible.
That her counts rise to a save level.
That her cold goes away.
And for all the children and families on A5 South, second home for the Lothrop's :-)


Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Phase of Delays

Yes, that's right, another delay! Those darn platelets are giving her grief. They need to be at 75k and they are down to 53k. We have had to stop the 6MP (chemo pill) that I give her at home until she is able to continue on with this phase. Evidently one of the side effects of the 6MP is it can cause the platelets to drop and as I have said before, she has sensitive platelets. Platelet transfusions only hold for a day or two before her body rejects them. Home care will be out this Sunday to access her port and draw blood to check her counts. If they are good, we will be admitted on Monday at 10:15 am, if not we will try for Tuesday.

I was not surprised that her platelet count was too low, that happened the last time as well. I am disappointed that we have a delay. Elizabeth was like "great!" Now I will be home on the weekend. Unfortunately she is sick with a cold and will not be able to have friends come over. :-( Please pray that she does not spike a fever. If a fever comes on we are at Children's for 14 days, on several antibiotics, without question. After being home, that would be hard to take but you do what you must for survival.

I will let you in on Lizzy's life right now, she is trying to sleep beside me with her waterfall running on her nightstand and her ipod playing the Sounds of the Season, Thunderstorm. She just loves that stuff and do I. It is rather serine. :-}

Please pray that we have a peaceful night sleep. Her bag is packed and ready to go if she should spike a fever. A fever is not much when you have Leukemia - 100.5 - that does not give you room to play with! She is pretty miserable at the moment and I can not give her any meds for the cold. Doing this could mask a fever and they need to know at all times what her body is doing. Well I can tell you..... it is feeling pretty crappy to put it mildly. :-(

I know I sound a bit down and I guess maybe at times I am. Sometime, even as a strong person of faith, it can get to you to see your baby hurt and suffer yet try to be so brave and strong for everyone; especially for her mom.

Please keep the faith for me when mine gets battered. I never stop believing and trusting in God for a minute but it still gets hard, I m only human and a parent yet to boot.

Pray for:
No fever
Platelets rise
her cold goes away
mouth sores continue to heal
no renal (kidney) failure
for Randy and Jimmy's safe journey, college scouting in Florida this week
All the families on A5 South, that they may feel the love and security God has for them even in a time of complete and utter upheaval in their family life.

Blessings to each and everyone of you,

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Prayers for Leah

Please be vigilant in your prayers for Lizzy's friend Leah. She went septic and spiked a fever of 105 degrees and is now in ICU. We are praying that she will be back on A5 South by Friday. One thing I have learned on this floor is that the kids can go down quickly but can also rise quickly, with prayer!

Liz will undergo her GFR test on Thur., which is a four hour test. This test is to make sure her kidneys are working properly to go on to her admit with the HD Methotrexate on Fri. If her numbers are not high enough then we will try for an admit on Tues. I will keep you up-dated as to whether we go in on Fri. or not.

Many thanks for all your prayers and support for Liz and the Lothrop family.



Monday, March 16, 2009

Prayers are answered

Just wanted to update everyone on the boy, Alex, that I asked you to pray for. He was released last Thursday and went home! Amen to prayers.
It is such a blessing and miracle that this wonderful family is allowed to take their son home and enjoy him.

Elizabeth and I spoke with Alex and his mom for about an hour last Thursday while we were down at Children's for her clinic/physical. He looked good and was very happy to be going home.

The power of prayer is an awesome and incredible gift that we can give to someone; to see it in action is a blessing.

Thank you for your prayers for my family and the people that I ask you to pray for. We are all blessed and better off for having you in our lives,


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Yay, we are home!

It is a bitter sweet homecoming. It was very hard to leave Leah and her mom, Ellen. We have become good friends over the past few weeks that Liz and I have been in and out of the hospital.

Last night was a tough one for our girls and the other parents on the floor. There was a "code Blue," which is where someone stops breathing. We happened to be in the hall and had to go into the parent lounge and out of the hall. Our girls were inquisitive, especially given their own fate with cancer. Both girls know this boy and his parents, it was very difficult. Alex will be turning 13 next week. I would like to ask anyone reading this blog to stop and pray for God's miracle healing of Alex before reading on.............................................Thank you.

Being on this floor can be quit depressing. I have found that you must find the joy that is on that floor and not dwell on the pain of the families. There is a time to stop and pray and give blessings for the answered prayers and also a time to realize how blessed one can be on this floor. It is also a time to realize one should never dwell on the evils or injustice of this world. The children on A5 south do not dwell on it and I promise I will not either. It is a waste of energy, energy that can be spent on making these children and their families smile; that to me is so much more gratifying and I feel that is the way God intended for it to be.

Elizabeth is doing great. This round of chemo was easier than the first round. She slept like a normal kid, hours were different of course, but the same amount. She felt sick the last hour or two of the 24 hour chemo drip but that was it. She was up running and playing when she was not sleeping. The doctors were all teasing her and asking if she was the same kid that spent 33 days straight in her room and would not come out to meet anyone!

She will have blood work this Thurs., with clinic on Friday at 11:00 am. She will have the GRF, four hour kidney test, next Thurs. with an admit next Fri. if her counts are high enough; ANC of 750 and platelets of 75K.

Please continue to pray for the following:
mouth sores, she has a few of them starting again.
kidney failure
nausea and vomiting

most importantly, pray for Alex and a miracle healing.

May you feel God's love, peace, and blessings as we do and as we try to share that with the families on A5 south.


Monday, March 9, 2009

Day 18 of Interim Phase I

Meet Leah.... she is a bundle of joy and everyone loves her on this floor. Liz and Leah complement each other well. They are two of the most up-beat, positive young girls you would want to be around. Leah is in the fourth grade and I can tell she is very loved by her classmates.

Liz is doing great! Better than the first time she received the High Dose Methotrexate. She felt a little sick the last two hours of the 24 hour chemo but that was it. Liz has been up playing games, watching movies, and having her nails done with Leah in the parent lounge. So much for the parent becomes the Liz/Leah lounge by 8 or 9 pm. lol

We hope to be out sometime tomorrow. Her pH levels have to be <.01 of the methotrexate to be discharged. Doctors have not rounded yet so I do not know where her levels are at. Getting close I hope. Doctors just rounded and her level is 8. far far away from where it needs to be but on track. Her potassium was low but quickly taken care of, this also happened the last time around too; but this time she did not have to take the giant potassium horse pill. I have never seen a pill that BIG! I was gagging just looking at it. Some help I am right!

Keep praying and she will keep fighting. Your prayers are a blessing and we see the power all of you have in God's name.



Sunday, March 8, 2009

Awesome website!

Nurse Katie has been with us since day 1. She has comforted Liz, and the Lothrop family, not only with her huge heart but also with her willingness to sit down with us and answer our MANY questions about the road ahead of us!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Off we go!

We are off and running for the second round of High dose Methotrexate....YEAH! Delays are a normal part of the protocol for ALL but they worry me. Interruption in her treatment freaks me out :-(

Liz will be down for the next two days but by Sunday she should be up and ready to see visitors. If anyone wants to make a trip down to 3333 Burnett Ave. and the 5th floor of Children's she/we will be happy to see you.

Please pray for Liz to have none or minimal side effects of the following:
mouth sores
Renal (Kidney) failure

personal prayers:
Dr. Jen Pope as she prepares to come back to work after the birth of her daughter, Claire. As moms we all have had to make the choice and it is a difficult one either way you go.
Catherine, she has strep throat

Life would be so difficult without people who continue to pray. I have experienced first hand the power of prayer and my life would not be as beautiful or wonderful without prayer and without you. I will continue to pray for you as well.


Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Unfortunately we are delayed for the second round of HD Methotrexate, fortunately there is an opening on Friday, March 6th, so we will have labs at Liberty on Thurs. to see if her counts are a go for Friday.

Somewhere along the line I missed the vital information that her counts need to be at certain level before each admit with the HD Methotrexated. I am sure you know which ones by now; yes, the ANC of 750 and the platelets of 75k, ANC, (immune) and platelets (blood clotting agents.)

Liz has sensitive platelets and they always seem to get hit first and hardest. Her body also fights off the platelets that are given to her during a transfusion. At least something is working within her body! She must obtain and sustain these levels on her own to receive the next dose. Liz is transfused when her platelets become too low and are critical to her own body. She is usually transfused when she falls into the 20k or is having symptoms due to a low count. Regular platelets range between 135k - 466k.

Liz's ANCs are good, they are reading 1020, this means that she can be around people without a mask, 500 and below is when a mask and flu shot are mandatory. Liz may even make an appearance at school again. I just don't like the fact that it is still flu season but Dr. Absalon feels that it is good for her to have a little socialization and normalcy. He said this phase is the last time this school year she will be able to attend.

Her GRF test on her kidney levels came back great, no problem there. Thank you for those prayers! These tests will be preformed before every admit to make sure fluids are filtering through her kidneys at acceptable levels. Her mouth sores are under control and there have been no signs of any new ones popping up.

Please continue to pray on our behalf for the following:
Liz is a go on Fri. and her platelets are at least at 75k.
her mouth sores go away.
the families and patients on 5A at Children's.
Dr. Jen Pope as she comes back to work after the birth of her baby, Claire.

Blessings to you and your family.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Tag team partners!

As Joel prepares to be released from Children's, Liz prepares to re-admit for her next round of Chemo. One thing is for sure...everyday is one day closer to remission!!!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Joel & Liz's fundraiser @ Mason Middle School!

To view in high quality press play and then go to the lower right hand corner, click the arrow and choose HQ. Then go to full screen by clicking the box just to the left in the bottom right corner.Turn up the volume, sit back and enjoy!