Fighting With Christina Benefit

Christina Johnson Tessier is the mother of 3 boys and the wife of a Harris County Fire Marshal.  At age 38, she was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL).  She has undergone extensive treatment, which multiple and lengthy stays in the hospital.  Prior to her diagnosis, she worked as an Assistant Director at a Child Care Facility.  Due to her course of treatment, she is no longer able to work, leaving her husband to be the sole provider for her family.  In addition to week/month long stays in the hospital, Christina must travel to MD Anderson Cancer Center once a week (Was twice a week) for blood work, checkups, and chemotherapy.  Though Christina has been the one going through the treatments, she has continued to be the rock for her family, and held on to her faith that God would protect and provide for her and her loved ones.  I'm asking that you read her timeline below, and if you are able and willing, please donate to help this family with medical bills, weekly expense of traveling to MD Anderson, and everyday living expenses.  We thank you for your support and prayers. 

Christina's Timeline:
On March 5th, 2013 Christina began to feel ill with a sore throat and fever.  She was extremely tired, and continued to have fever in the days to come.  The doctor tested her for strep, which was negative, and suggested she take off work for a few days.  With her oldest son's wedding approaching that weekend, she followed the doctors orders.  Once she returned to work, she did her best to maintain her "normal" life and daily duties, however; on April 4th, she decided to call into work and take a few days off.  There were signs of something not being right when Christina and husband started to notice she would bruise easy.  Christina's mom came to visit and noticed that she was "yellow".  On April 9th she went to the doctor who immediately sent her to the ER.  

April 9th, 2013, Christina was admitted into Conroe Regional Hospital's ER.  The doctor's tested her for everything, and told her it looks to be Leukemia, but they wouldn't have the results for a few days.  Her husband told her he was by her side, no matter, and from that moment on, he has fought this battle with her! 

At this time, her platelet count was very low.  It was 8,000 and should have been 150,000.  They rushed her to ICU and started IV drips immediately.  She received 4 bags of platelets, 2 bags of blood and 4 bags of antibiotics.  

April 12, 2013, the doctors came to talk to Christina and confirm that she has Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL).  Her liver count was low and they were afraid she might have cancer there as well.  They were waiting on a chromosome test to tell if it had the Philadelpia chromosome, which was a tougher cancer to beat.  The doctor explained that this form of cancer has a survival rate of less than 5 years.  Christina became numb and all she could do was look at her husband and squeeze his hand.  The doctor told them there was treatment for this type of cancer, but they would need to get into MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Christina's husband began working with the insurance companies and MDA to get her transferred as soon as possible. 

April 20, 2013, Christina received more platelets and blood before she was transferred by ambulance to MD Anderson.

April 24th, 2013, Christina started chemo, 2 doses of two different types of chemo.  Chemo EVERYDAY for the next few weeks!  

Over the next month, Christina spent almost every day at the hospital receiving chemo, bone marrow biopsy's, blood work, etc.  She spent her 39th birthday in the rooms of MD Anderson, but the volunteer service made her feel extra special that day.  Also knowing her hair would fall out, she went to the MD Anderson salon and donated her hair to Locks for Love.

May 16, 2013, CHRISTINA'S IN REMISSION!!  What an amazing day!  Though she didn't know the road she had left to travel would be an intense one, at that moment, one word matter to Christina, her husband, children, parents, family, and friends...that's REMISSION!  May 16th, awesome day!

For the months to come, Christina would have many scares, complications, and struggles from her treatment plan, and the Leukemia.  She had to take intense chemo that had more side effects than just her hair falling out and nausea.  She would begin running and extremely high fever, her blood pressure would drop dangerously low, she had a blood infection, which in turn landed her in MD ICU where her organs began shutting down.

MD ICU - While in ICU, Christina was on a ventilator, dialysis, catheter, and feeding tube.  They had to put her in a medical induced coma.  She was there for 8 days.  She woke up on the 7th day and pulled her own breathing tube out!  Her husband never left her side.  He slept in uncomfortable chairs and lived off of hospital cafeteria food for 8 days.  He wanted to make sure that he was aware of every little change when the doctors came in.  Christina was ultimately taken out of ICU and put into a regular room for another week.  Eventually all the blood work came back well and her kidneys and heart were back to functioning at 100%.

To this day, Christina still makes weekly visits to MD Anderson for blood work, chemotherapy, and doctor's visits.  Since she is unable to work, still have weekly MD expenses (food, parking, etc.), medical bills, and everyday living expenses.  If you are able and willing, this family would greatly appreciate any help you could pass on.  

For more information and updates, like us on Facebook: Fighting With Christina Benefit
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Organizer

Lauren Ratcliff McSwain 
Organizer
Hegar, TX
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