These were old emails that I sent to a group of close family and friends, updating them of things that were going on wiht Jovee.
>>> Ty Lim <firstname.lastname@example.org> 1/26/2007 9:50 PM >>>Tough week but we got thru it. Jovee's home now. Spent one full week at the hospital because of infections and fevers but she, once again, bounced back from it all. Jovee's strength gives me strength to continue when the outlook is grim. Tiring and tuff week but we move on to the next day.
On 1/8/07, Ty Lim <email@example.com> wrote:
Jovee went in for a bone biopsy and gastrostomy today, January 8th.
The bone biopsy will give us an idea of how the chemo is working, since we knew in the beginning that the cancer had spread into her bone and bone marrow.
The gastrostomy is basically a feeding tube. She's been losing her appetite so this is a sure way to make sure that she's getting the nutrition that is needed.
Both surgeries went well, she's slowing recovering right now.
She also had a CT Scan last Friday. The main tumor, which is right below her right collar bone, is shown to be shrinking a bit. It has shrunk from 2.1 cm x 3.8 cm to 2.0 cm x 3.0 cm. Thank you for all your prayers.
These two pictures were taken today, one before the surgery around 11:30 am and the other was just taken about 5 minutes ago, around 9:40 pm. Sorry the file size of the pictures were big; I didn't have my photo editing program here.
We love you and thank you for all your support.
Ty and Jeannine
Sent: Friday, December 08, 2006 2:05 PM
Subject: Jovee update Dec. 8th
Jeannine brought Jovee into the Emergency Room around midnight on Tuesday the 5th/Wednesday 6th. Jovee had temperatures ranging from 100.0 to 102.3. Because her immune system is again at a 0, we had to bring her in. The 7th - 10th day after the 1st day of chemotherapy is when her counts are at its' lowest. The good thing about the chemo is that it is hopefully wiping out all the cancer cells but at the same time it is wiping out all her good white and red blood cells.
She contracted a bacteria called C-Diff which has made her have endless diarrhea and the fever is related to this bacteria also. If her immune system had been normal, it would have fought the C-Diff but because it's at a low, the bacteria is in her stomache. Because of the bacteria, she's contagious so we're confined to the hospital room. Usually when we're here we get to roam the halls and the entire hospital. In short conclusion, she was given an antibiotic to help with the side-effects of the chemo from last week, which made her sick this week, and now they're giving her more antibiotics to battle the antiobiotics. Ugh!!!!
We're probably going to be here until next Tuesday. Doctors are hoping that the antibiotics will kill the C-Diff bacteria by then. Once she gets rid of the bacteria and when her ANC levels are higher, they're going to harvest her stem cells to freeze for later when we take her to Seattle. The stem cell harvest will take a couple of days. Once we're done with the harvest, we'll hopefully have a couple of days off and then we begin the 3rd cycle of chemo on the 18th of December and start all over again.
Anyways, that's just a short update.
Took this picture last night right before she was about to go to bed.
Subject: Jovee Update Monday 16th>Date: Mon, 16 Oct 2006 21:11:04 -0700 (PDT)>>Today was a very good day!>>> Jovee had her Hickman line installed on Wednesday but nurses weren’t >able to draw blood out of the line. They scheduled another surgery to >reposition the line for Tuesday morning, the 17th. We prayed all weekend >that when we went back this Monday afternoon, they would be able to get >blood out of the line. We didn’t want her to go through another surgery. >Thank goodness; it worked properly! Nurses were able to draw blood out of >the line and her blood flowed through easily.> Results came back from Wednesday’s biopsies. It is in her bone and >bone marrow BUT the cancer cells aren’t as aggressive as doctors had >thought. In Stage 4, there are 3 risk levels: low, intermediate, and >high. Doctors believe she’s at intermediate risk.> Doctor waiting for 1 more test to come back, will know by tomorrow >afternoon. Even though she strongly believes Jovee to be at intermediate >risk, she wants to be 100% sure.> And the best news today…N-Myc are genes inside the cancer cells. >Biopsies show that the N-Myc’s are NOT amplified, which means the genes are >not as aggressive, which means slower spreading, which means less >aggressive chemotherepay. YES!!!!!! If Jovee was/is High Risk and the >N-Myc levels were amplified, treatment would have to be more grueling.>> We Love You All. A billion thank you’s again for your support, care, >faith, and prayers.
On 10/16/06, Ty Lim <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Today was a very good day!
Jovee had her Hickman line installed on Wednesday but nurses weren't able to draw blood out of the line. They scheduled another surgery to reposition the line for Tuesday morning, the 17 th. We prayed all weekend that when we went back this Monday afternoon, they would be able to get blood out of the line. We didn't want her to go through another surgery. Thank goodness; it worked properly! Nurses were able to draw blood out of the line and her blood flowed through easily.
Results came back from Wednesday's biopsies. It is in her bone and bone marrow BUT the cancer cells aren't as aggressive as doctors had thought. In Stage 4, there are 3 risk levels: low, intermediate, and high. Doctors believe she's at intermediate risk.
Doctor waiting for 1 more test to come back, will know by tomorrow afternoon. Even though she strongly believes Jovee to be at intermediate risk, she wants to be 100% sure.
And the best news today…N-Myc are genes inside the cancer cells. Biopsies show that the N-Myc's are NOT amplified, which means the genes are not as aggressive, which means slower spreading, which means less aggressive chemotherepay. YES!!!!!! If Jovee was/is High Risk and the N-Myc levels were amplified, treatment would have to be more grueling.
We Love You All. A billion thank you's again for your support, care, faith, and prayers.
On 10/11/06, Ty Lim <email@example.com> wrote:
Sorry if I wasn't able to return some of your phone calls; been a little busy…
Today, October 11, 2006:
Had a biopsy of the tumor, bone marrow, and bone (taken from the backside, in the hip area). Also placed a Hickman line (as shown in picture) on her chest. The Hickman line is used for blood draws, IV's, and the chemo. Easy access to her instead of poking her every time. Jovee did really good today.
100% confirmed that the tumor is cancerous, it is neuroblastoma, no more 99%.
Since it has spread to different places throughout her body, it is at Stage 4.
Oncologist says that the tumor(s) is/are "aggressive" but will only know exactly how aggressive when the biopsy comes back.
From there, finding out how aggressive the tumors are, they will know better how to treat it (radiation, chemotherapy, surgery, how much to give her, how often, etc…).
Thank you everyone, again, for your thoughts and prayers and your willingness to help.
Been reading a lot about cancer. Came across something from Lance Armstrong, a cancer survivor:
"If there is one thing cancer has taught me, it's that we are stronger than we think. When times get tough, we find a way through. When we think we've had all we can take, we find the will to go on. When you believe in your strength and know how to tap into it, you LIVE STRONG."
So, LIVE STRONG, everyday, everyone.
Ty, Jeannine, and Jovee
Sent: Thursday, October 05, 2006 1:10 AM
Subject: From Ty Lim
Thank you so much for everybody's prayers. Your prayers have truly sustained us these last couple of days.
Today, Thursday the 5th, is the big day for Jovee. By the end of today, after all the tests, we should know for sure how aggressive the tumor is and if it has spread anywhere else inside her body.
Love you all.