We were at my cousin’s 40th birthday celebration. My mother’s complaints to me that night were, “I feel like I’m coming down with a cold”. She continued to push on through the weekend and even went to work that Saturday. Spent all day in bed Sunday and called me and let me know she was driving herself to the ER on Sunday 2/24/2019.
I quickly rushed to the hospital to meet her there to find she was very anemic without any signs or confirmation of bleeding. She needed a blood transfusion ASAP. After what seemed like an eternity (4days), my Mother was diagnosed with (AML) Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
She has faced this news with strength and valor since day one.
We sat with this new TRUTH hours before I could pick up the phone to call my family. It is a nightmare, one we had to face and accept. My mother has an aggressive disease that needs medical care and cannot survive without it. What can I do to help her?! I continue to answer, “Everything that is in my control”. Her Strength and Valor in this process has pushed me to be able to move unmovable mountains.
Since 2/24/2019, she has undergone induction chemotherapy which was 24 hours a day for 7 days with an additional 3 shots of another type of chemotherapy, to only leave her weak, tired, unable to get out of bed, and further get complicated and end up in ICU due to complications. All to which I may add is not a normal process, but a process that most patients with (AML) experience before slowly observing their “numbers” improve. She has had more than 6 Bone Marrow Biopsies during this period of time. Bone Marrow Biopsies by the way are a little clip out of a torture scene in a horror film. ( You as a donor will not experience this procedure). This is merely an explanation of what my mother has had to endure. Thankfully, she made it through the first round of induction therapy and 10 weeks in the hospital. We are extremely grateful to all the doctors, nurses, therapists, family and friends who have been there to support her along this journey.
Acute inpatient rehabilitation was her next step. On the fourth day of being in an inpatient acute rehabilitation hospital we were notified that her last bone marrow biopsy revealed that she was in REMISSION!! My mom and I cried tears of JOY. She then went on to AMAZING at the rehab hospital, learned how to operate her wheelchair, then onto rolling walker, and was strong enough to be able to come home. She was home for a week, to receive therapies, go to doctor’s appointments, and get her prepared for the next chapter in the recovery process.
She was re-admitted for a second round of chemotherapy which was supposed to be “less” strong and for a 5 day admission, but she is going on three weeks with possible discharge from the rehabilitation hospital on 6/3/2019.
The MOST IMPORTANT message I want you all to take from this is: CELIA (AKA VIVI) NEEDS YOUR HELP. My mother has a shot at beating this disease. She can only do it with your help. We are in the search for a bone marrow transplant donor. I have teamed up with BETHEMATCH.ORG and with the help of my family, extended family and my friend’s friends we will save my mother’s life or anyone that you may be a match for.
The Second way you can help:
As we prepare for the transplant we have been managing the financial portion of the disease process as best as we could. Unfortunately my mom’s FMLA and Short term disability coverage were denied due to unforeseen circumstances. The medical bills continue to arrive, and we have a proposal of $50,000-$75,000 for the transplant. Expenses have increased, and I am doing everything in my power to maintain and manage her expenses. Due to this unfortunate situation, I have moved my mom in, and have taken on the primary caregiver role. I would like to thank all of you for all your support, and again thank those who have registered, all who have attempted to register but cannot donate due to illness or age restrictions. I appreciate all that you have done for our family. My last favor to ask of you is; If there is any amount that you could donate towards my mom’s care would be an immense help. No amount is to small, and we will only be able to reach this goal with your help.
To help: Register on Bethematch.org/savecelia. You can also register by texting SaveCelia to 614-74