Hope for Sarah

$133,429 of $250,000 goal

Raised by 1,229 people in 10 months
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Created June 12, 2018
Well,  never thought we would ever have to do this, but life isn’t that predictable. In March 2018, we learned that Sarahs cancer had mestatstsized to her liver and bones. At the time, we were shocked, but hopeful, because we were prescribed the best available medicine for this disease. Fast track just a couple of months to the long weekend in may, and we found ourselves in the emergency room. The chemo was not working and the cancer had progressed. A new regimen was started but the pain and discomfort experienced while waiting for this drug to work, led us to seek alternative therapies. We found a treatment available in Germany, that is not available in Canada. It’s called regional chemotherapy. A direct, less toxic procedure. After speaking with someone who was in Sarahs shoes just last year, who sought out treatment at this facility and achieved  astounding results, we have decided to stop the current therapy and head to Germany to receive this treatment.

Sarah is only 30 years old, and while very young, she has spent more than half of her life with her spouse. And with an entire lifetime ahead, we’d love nothing more than for Sarah to be there with us. The situation  is urgent and your help, in any way, is more than appreciated.
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Unfortunately, early this morning another curveball was thrown our way and the future is uncertain. The campaign will be on hold for the time being...please pray for us as Sarah continues this unpredictable battle.
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The latest...

Luckily this is a rather uneventful update. Sarah has completed 5 rounds of radiation and if now resting up at home. Symptoms are tolerable at the moment but we have been told that they can show up 1-2 weeks after treatment, if they do indeed show up. But so far, so good.

Our flights are booked for our next trip. We are set to leave Ottawa on Monday at 3pm with a 7:45 arrival time in Germany on Tuesday morning. The countdown is on.

Please pray that Sarah gets rest over these coming days before we set out for battle once again, and that the symptoms from the radiation remain tolerable.

Our last trip was around $55,000 and this next one is currently anticipated to be around $100k. I sound like a broken record, but please continue to share our gofundme page as we still need to raise funds to cover the treatment costs.

Looking forward to updating everyone once we set foot in Germany!

“She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails.”
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There is never a dull moment...

We sure know how to party. Our first check in to emergency took place on Victoria Day weekend when Sarahs bilirubin was high and jaundice was setting in. Well, we had such a blast that time, there was no other way to spend the next long weekend...

I feel like I’m the author of a horror story some times. Even bringing myself to write these updates becomes increasingly harder, as the hurdles along the way of this journey seem to be relentless.

Everything was setting up for a beautiful July 1 Canada day weekend. We had just celebrated on Friday, that Sarah’s bilirubin was now at its lowest since our original check-in to emerg, and that she was able to make it out with me to do some groceries (without a wheelchair). Well, shortly after lunch on Saturday June 30, Sarah suffered a seizure. It was the most traumatic thing I’ve ever witnessed. I’ve never seen one, Sarah has no history of seizures and has never had one, and things were going SO WELL. I honestly thought it was over...screaming for my wife to not die. Ill never forget this.

After some really scary moments at emerg, Sarah finally stabilized. She came out of the seizure rather quickly and was answering questions within ten minutes, but a violent vomit on the way to hospital in the ambulance, led to a bleed in Sarah food pipe which caused some scary, bloody moments as she continued to be sick in the couple hours after checking in.

So now, the why? Why did Sarah have this seizure? As usual, your biggest fears set in as to the cause. For whatever reason, and what little optimism we had left, we never want to expect the worst. A frustrating three days pass waiting in hospital to have an MRI on Sarahs brain. And finally, the results. Sarah bone metastasis has spread to her head. This was just the blow we didn’t need.

After an emotional couple of days, we gathered our thoughts, regrouped and decided that this was not going be the end of the road, and that it was just another bump. We accepted the fact that Sarah needed radiation of the brain. 5 sessions, 15 minutes each. When I tell people about this bump we’ve hit, the first thing they say is “so, no more Germany?”

They clearly don’t know Sarah. Her first concern was getting back to Germany as quickly as possible. We were able to monitor Sarahs blood work daily (the advantage of being in the hospital) and saw that her bilirubin was continuing to decline. This was bittersweet since we didn’t have a picture of the situation painted for us yet, but it gave us hope. It painted the plan out just a little bit clearer.

The way we see it is that, we were so fortunate to get to Germany in the nick of time to have Sarahs liver treated. And without a hitch really. The cancer was already in Sarahs head when we flew there. We didn’t know it was unsafe to fly under these circumstances but we made it there and back, with a treatment under our belts and no scary hiccups in the sky.

Sarah has now done 3 of 5 radiation treatments and is tolerating them so far, with minimal side effects. She’s very tired, and weak, but her fight is still there. We have clearance from the doctor to fly as of July 23rd so our plan is to leave on the Monday, land in Germany early Tuesday morning and hopefully get a full round of treatments done that week. (For those curious, Sarah’s bilirubin CONTINUES to go down and as of Monday was at 4.37, a new 2 month low!)

Please continue to pray for us as an enormous amount of physical and emotional strength is needed to keep grinding this thing out. I also want to take this opportunity in my long winded update, to thank everyone who has donated to our go fund me page, or to those who have sent cards, cheques and e transfers. Im guilty of not thanking some people I have seen in person, who have donated, so please accept our thank you here. We are still raising funds to cover our next trip so continuing to share our page is so appreciated.

Will continue to update....

“Fall seven times, stand up eight.”
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An update from the battlefield...

Today was the day. Sarah didn’t sleep much last night (not)knowing what she was in for. Having the procedure of regional chemotherapy explained to us yesterday, definitely left us with some anxious anticipation.

For those who don’t know about the process of regional chemotherapy, Ill give you a quick overview. Unlike systemic chemotherapy which is administered through IV, regional chemotherapy involves pumping the drugs directly into the affected organs artery. So, Sarah was told last night that she would have a catheter installed in her region groin which would reach the livers main artery. All this, under local anaesthetic. “It will only hurt a little bit when we freeze you, but the rest is easy” Ya right, right? So needless to say the nerves were running high. But it turns out, they weren’t lying. They prepped Sarah for treatment around 11, and took her out of the room for all this work to be done around 11:30. I thought, this sounds like it will take a while so I’m going to get out to the grocery store and pick up some snacks. Jet lag and nerves had us up last night and hunger struck around 3am, and with no snacks in sight, I learned my lesson. The grocery store was a little further than I though, but nevertheless I was only gone about an hour and when I was about 10 minutes away Sarah texted me saying “all done!”, “that was insane!”.

Indeed it was. These Germans are efficient, and they sure know what they’re doing. The worst part of the procedure was probably not being able to move her leg for four hours, after having the catheter removed. This was to ensure no bleeding from the artery.

So now, we have the weekend to relax and for her body to adjust to the new treatment. The doctors said this was good timing for the first treatment. They don’t do treatments on the weekend, so this gives two days for the drugs to do their work and hopefully for blood levels to improve. As the blood levels improve, they will increase the dose of chemo. Die cancer, die!

We are optimistic and in good spirits, but definitely not out of the woods. Please continue the prayers and getting the word out there about our GoFundMe page! Thank you all so much for the many kinds of support were are receiving. The generosity displayed from everyone who has donated is incredible and we cannot thank you enough.

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope”

-Martin Luther King Jr.
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$133,429 of $250,000 goal

Raised by 1,229 people in 10 months
No Longer Accepting Donations
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Created June 12, 2018
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