Here is Bridger's story by his Dad:
On June 27th, 2013 we took Bridger to the doctor for a checkup prior to his Tonsil and Adenoid surgery scheduled several weeks away after Breanna discovered a "puffiness" in his face that simply wouldn't go away. The Pediatrician took one look at Bridger and knew he wasn't the same kid he was a week prior. We were sent to Imaging for an immediate CAT scan and promised a call the same night; a call we didn't yet realize would change our lives forever.
Bridger, Bailey, Landon (cousin) and I were at the picnic table eating when I saw Breanna's trembling hand holding the phone and indescribable look on her face. Our instructions were simple; pack a bag and come to the Emergency Room as quickly as possible. At this point one's mind processes more thoughts in a minute than any other entire typical day and a mixture of emotions flow through your body like a raging wildfire fueled by a hot summer wind.
We were brought to a room without delay and personally met by our pediatrician. The noticeable pain in her eyes and lines of her face confirmed everything her lips next uttered forth : a tumor had been identified in the CAT scan. Within two hours we had digested the reality, as best as possible, been transported via ambulance to the airport and flown to Children's Hospital in Seattle where we strapped in to a roller coaster that would take us on a ride with plunges of fear and climbs of hope.
Bridger next underwent several biopsies of the mass in his sinus, a Lumbar Puncture, daily (and at times hourly) blood work, CAT scan, MRI as well as a bone marrow biopsy leading up to a diagnosis of Burkitt's Lymphoma on July 3rd. The team assigned to him at Children's is unparralled and pushed for a second biopsy after the first left them uneasy. Although this added a few more days of waiting, it ended up being a critical step as any resultant surgery could have added physical pain and further complicated the lymphoma treatment.
As mentioned, we heard a word on July 3rd we thought would never pertain to our children; something we foolishly thought only to be associated with adults; something we thought, quite simply put, impossible; we heard the one single word that changed our lives forever: Cancer. We realized in a fleeting moment everything we thought important leading up to this fracture in time to be but petty annoyance and somewhat silly selfishness. It's not that you don't value your children nor think they're invincible until something like this happens it's just that you have the luxury of ignorance; a luxury I personally feel should never be shattered.
The human body does an amazing thing at this point and creates a feeling in and of itself void of all emotion. I believe this to be a shield of sorts protecting a parent's sanity and driving oneself forward to the path now laid before us.
Bridger was further confirmed on July 4th to have signs of Lymphoma in his throat, intestines and kidneys. He started Chemo the evening of Indepenance Day; a day that will live forever in our memory and a day ever so fittingly captured as the start of his journey to be free of cancer!
To follow Bridger's progress, his family is posting updates to the following site frequently:
To visit his cousin's site, please visit: www.gofundme.com/BellasBattle
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