Two years ago today, at 3:59pm, the last of Kate’s cells were pumped into Reese. The lifesaving cells that gave her a new chance at normal. And here we are today, celebrating this momentous day together in the sunshine, at our yellow house!
Today our family is so blessed. I go to bed at night thanking God and knowing just how lucky I am. We are mid-covid, in isolation. So I spend even more time with my kids, and my family unit has never been stronger. Reese and her sisters make up my little class, and they are also the best playmates and confidants. Giggles reign in my house and I wouldn’t have it any other way!!
Reese’s Immune System
Reese started her revaccinations back in November. At the suggestion of our UCSF docs, they were fast tracked because Reese is at extra risk for complications because her spleen was compromised early in her disease. This does not affect Reese in everyday life, but it means that it is even more important to get her pneumococcal vaccines done, and protecting her.
Reese’s titers were set to be drawn at the end of March. This is testing to check and see if she had good immune response to the vaccines, We did not go to that appointment, re: covid. A couple weeks ago, our doctor decided that the risk of possible exposure to covid was less dangerous that holding back on Reese’s vaccines. (I have actually heard this on the news in general, doctors encouraging parents not to delay on routine vaccinations for their children.) So we went to an outpatient lab, first thing in the morning, before anyone else had been there. We, of course, wore our N95 masks (left over from transplant) and did not touch anything. But still, this was a far stretch from our normal behavior (we haven’t been anywhere since March 10, thank God for grocery delivery!) So I felt very uncomfortable, but I knew it was best.
Reese’s titers resulted yesterday and they are sub-par. This is a blow, but not completely unexpected. The only way to really know if Reese’s immune system is up to the job is to try. And we did. So now we will try again, Reese will get a prevnar booster, and then we will check again. I pray that this is all it takes, and my girl will be more protected as we slowly reenter a world with covid.
May 2, 2020
Today was a true day of celebration!! When my husband asked me how we should mark it, I had to think a little. I wanted it to be special, memorable. In April, my little family celebrates 4 birthdays and Easter (Reese and Quinn are SIX now and Claire is four, the exact age that Reese was when she went to transplant. I admit this crosses my mind all the time, she is so little.) Anyway, with all that partying, I didn’t think another cake would really offer that big of a bang. So we planned a car parade.
For those of you who haven’t been part of a drive-by yet, I can tell you that this is the covid way to celebrate a lot of things. People drive in a “parade” past the person who is being celebrated. There are streamers, balloons, honking, well-wishes, and love. It is an incredible way to spread joy while social distancing. And let me tell you, joy was definitely spread in Winnetka today!
Reese’s friends and family paraded down our street for about twenty minutes. Nonnie and Poppy were here, to share in the excitement. There were flamingos to spare as we danced and ate popsicles. Reese held a picture of her and Kate, that she carried with her all day, for everyone to see. She kept saying, “This is my donor, Kate!” to everyone who drove by. She loves her so much. At the same time, in Bellevue, a car parade was happening with Reese’s Iowa family and friends! This incredible community that has been with us since the beginning continues to celebrate with us, what a gift!
It was another great highlight of the day when Reese got to Facetime with Kate! We can’t wait to see her again, she is safe and sound with her parents. Right after that call, Father Dan stopped by to social distance with us in the front yard. What a blessed day we had!