No one fights alone
The excitement of our son’s, Reid’s, high school playoff game day filled our home with laughter, pride and of course, game strategies. As he was preparing to leave for school that morning, he nonchalantly said, “I think my pads are causing this knot under arm to swell.” My heart dropped. I am not a doctor, or nurse, but my instinct kicked in. A week passed and the ‘swelling’ did not go down. I scheduled an appointment with his family doctor. She looked at it and immediately drew blood and sent him for an ultrasound.
The whirlwind of doctor appointments, internet research and prayers began in early December 2015. We were referred to Texas Children’s Hospital for a general surgeon consult. On Christmas Eve, Reid had a biopsy of the mass under his arm. On Dec. 29, we received the anticipated call. “Reid has Hodgkin’s lymphoma.” Our lives at that moment felt like shattering glass. Our son, the football captain, class officer, baseball player, high school senior had cancer. We were devastated. We gathered as a family and prayed for peace and strength for the unknown. Reid humbled us by stating, “This is just a bump in the road.” We were, and continue to be, amazed by his amazing courage and determination to become a survivor.
The following day, our daughter, Alyssa, had her annual bone marrow transplant appointment on Texas Children’s BMT floor. When we walked onto the unit, I told the nurse to please tell Dr. Krance that Reid had cancer. He immediately walked over and spoke with us about Reid’s diagnosis. The love, care and concern of Dr. Krance and his staff is what made us choose Texas Children’s’ for Reid’s treatment.
That afternoon we met with Dr. Kamdar, and soon after Dr. Zinn. Their passion to help children beat cancer was evident. They made us feel confident and comforted he will beat the disease and continue on with his normal life. A week-and-a-half after he was diagnosis, Reid was admitted to the hospital for his first round of chemotherapy. He battled it like a champ. We learned to take life one day at a time and to cherish the good days and embrace challenging moments. After four rounds of chemotherapy, he began his radiation treatments. On May 20, he completed his last round of radiation. The next day he turned 18 and received the best birthday present ever, being cancer free.
Throughout his treatment, Reid continued to look towards the future. He finished high school on time and with honors. He started at Texas A&M this fall with a passion for life that amazes us. Throughout his treatment we picked up the glass pieces and slowly placed them back together. Our lives will never be the same, but the looking glass has a different perspective now. We now see hope, a cherished future and a realization No One fights Alone.