Posted below are the most recent updates on Jacob and his condition. If you wish to receive email alerts when new information has been posted, enter your email below.
Sunday, April 17th
oday didn’t start off the best. I woke up this morning tired and cranky and kind of had a melt-down in my head. I couldn’t have one out loud because that probably wouldn’t have been good for Jacob to see. Soon after, Jacob woke up and he had a melt-down…a real one. I knew how he felt, so all I could do was console him. I don’t know what it was or why. Maybe just a combination of things. First of all, neither one of us are morning people. Second, we just don’t sleep well here. And third, we’re just sick of living in a hospital. Oh well! It’s out of our control, so we just try to roll with the punches.
Jacob had 3 hours of therapy today. He’s been working on strengthening still and also stairs. He was very proud of himself with how well he did with that. I always get so many compliments at both places from doctors, nurses, therapists and so many others about what a nice boy he is, how polite he is and how smart he is. Things I already know, but love to hear anyway.
He got done with therapy for the day at 3:00. My sister Liz and the kids came for a visit and also to take Caleb back with them. My parents came soon after. We had a great time and then my Dad took us all out to dinner. We were able to get out on the town again. I always hate when our time out and about come to an end. I enjoyed having my Caleb here with me and sad he had to leave. Earlier today, my distant cousin Lynn, along with her sister, and Lynn’s daughter Kariann came for a visit. We had a nice visit. I love to have company! Hint! Hint! 🙂
Jacob and I love all of your letters and messages. Wish we could answer them all, but there’s just not enough hours in the day. They mean so much to us! God has really shown us how so many people care whether they’re family, friends or complete strangers.
Please continue to pray for Jacob and his healing of this cancer. Also for his legs that he will regain his strength. We’re also asking that you will pray for Jacob as he goes in for another chemo treatment tomorrow at 1:30. This will be an outpatient appt. It will take a few hours including time for bloodwork and such. Please pray that the side effects will be minimal to none. Thanks again for taking the time to pray for him and think of him through this difficult time.
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Saturday, April 16th
Today was a good day! Jacob only had 3 hours of therapy and was done at 1:30. What to do? We certainly couldn’t just sit around and do nothing…it was unanimous – The Children’s Museum! We were there for about 2 1/2 hours. Jacob definately enjoyed himself a lot more than Caleb. I think it was mostly because Jacob was just excited to get out and have some fun. We had a good time though. We then ran some errands. Who knew getting out to Meijers could be so much fun. I’m getting stir-crazy being here too! We got something to eat and headed back to MFB.
Soon after, Jacob’s Uncle Neil, Aunt Kristina and cousin Brady came for a visit. What a great way to end a nice day!
Please continue to pray for Jacobs physical therapy. We would love to be able to get out of here soon and just do outpatient therapy. I know Jacobs getting burned out from living in a hospital, as am I. Also, please continue to pray for Jacobs healing and Gods will for his life!
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Friday, April 15th
Well, today was even better yet. I could tell he felt better right when he woke up this morning. Although he did end up throwing up late morning, but felt better afterwards. He still didn’t eat much today, but still more than yesterday. Hopefully it just keeps getting better everyday. The physical therapist even said that he seemed stronger. I love hearing good news at this point!
Jacob had 4 houra of therapy again today. Lots of strengthening. He also played Wii Fit, pool and Uno. He loves the occupational therapy! It doesn’t seem like work.
Later this afternoon, my sister Liz brought Caleb to see us along with 2 of her kids Abbie and Jared. The kids had a good time. This evening, my Aunt Gaye and Uncle Marty, cousin Chris and his wife Theresa came for a visit. We had a nice visit. The best part is is that Caleb is staying here at MFB with Jacob and I for the weekend. Jacobs schedule is usually pretty light on the weekend, so I decided that we should have a sleepover for a couple of nights. I think all 3 of us could use some bonding time. Just wish Ken was here with us. At least we’ll be able to see him next week. We’ve been snuggling on our cots, eating popcorn and watching a movie. Just so thankful I have both my boys here with me. Actually, as I’m sitting here writing this, Jacob’s kneeling behind me and massaging my shoulders. Boy I have such great kids!
Please continue to pray for Jacob and the strengthening of his hips and legs. That he would also be able to walk soon without assistance. That part is very frustrating for him. Thanks again for all your prayers. I could never thank you all enough!
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Thursday, April 14th
Today was certainly better than the last few. Although the day started off tough for Jacob, because he was so tired, I definately noticed that he got better and better throughout the day. They did have 4 hours of physical and occupational therapy scheduled for Jacob, but they took it easy on him. Constantly asking him if he was tired or if he felt ok. He ate a little bit more than yesterday, but not as much as I’d like him to eat. This evening he had a sudden craving for popcorn, so I was on a mission. Thankfully I found some. He ate it all, so at least I know that his appetite is coming back.
One thing that Jacob has absolutely hated through this whole thing is needles. MGH kinda ruined it for him when they poked him close to a dozen times trying to get an IV in. He has to start having shots on a regular basis of Neupogen which is supposed to boost his immune system. Unfortunately, I’ll be the one giving them to him, but as long as we’re here at rehab or the hospital, the nurses can be the bad guys. Well, tonight was supposed to be the first night for it and he was so upset that he had to get poked again. The nurse put numbing ceam on it and had the needle in and out before he even knew it. Thank goodness! Maybe I won’t have to be the bad guy after all!
Please continue to pray for Jacob….1)for him to be healed of the cancer. 2)that the side effects would be minimal and 3)that he would continue to get stronger and be able to walk on his own without assistance. With the chemo knocking him down, this may end up being a set back for his recovery.
Thanks again for all your prayers! We’re continuing to trust God and we know that He has Jacob’s best interests in mind. The Lord is good!
Wednesday, April 13th
Jacob still recovering from the last couple days. He didn’t want to eat breakfast this morning because he was afraid of getting sick, but I strongly encouraged him to eat something to give his body fuel. So he did – just a little bit though. Better than nothing! Well, they were having trouble with his port. He had a double port put in and were having trouble drawing blood from one. I was afraid that they were going to have to go back in, but they messed with it enough and got it to work. It’s not perfect, but it works. We got discharged at about 2:30 and had to head back to Mary Free Bed to continue on with physical therapy. We just pulled into the parking garage and Jacob got sick. Thankfully we got the door open so he didn’t get sick in the van. I feel bad for the person who was parked beside us. I got him inside and once he layed down he felt fine. I even got him to eat some fruit earlier this evening. At least he’s still taking his vitamins, so that should help. Hopefully tomorrow is a better day!
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Tuesday, April 12th
Well, today could’ve certainly been better. Jacob was exhausted! That chemo kicked his butt last night. He woke up this morning and had a little breakfast and that was pretty much it for the rest of the day. He did have a few grapes here and there and a little bit of water. I did talk him into eating an apple earlier this evening, but he said his guts just hurt. He didn’t sleep very good last night, so he just layed in bed all day and took it easy. He did take a long, much needed nap this afternoon.
Caleb was able to come for a visit today along with his aunt and cousins. That perked Jacob up a bit. We had a good time. Another highlight of Jacobs day was that they had some volunteers that bring their dogs in to visit with the patients. First, Jacob got to meet Baer, a big black Newfoundland/Chow mix. Then Sasha came in. A cute, little fluffy thing (not sure what she was). She came right in and her owner put her up on the bed beside Jacob and she layed right down. If you know Jacob very well, then you know he LOVES dogs. That was the best part of his day!
Then back to reality. Jacob had to have his last dose of chemo for this week. Back to Mary Free Bed for some more physical therapy tomorrow. Hopefully he regains some strength soon to continue working on his walking. There has been some talk that he may get discharged from Mary Free Bed later next week and then continue with outpatient therapy three times a week for awhile. I’ll keep you all updated on that. Please continue to pray for Jacob as he continues on this journey. Also, please pray for his younger brother Caleb who’s going through a lot too. Thankfully he’s staying with my sisters, but all of a sudden, he was without his Mom, Dad and brother. Very scary and confusing to a 7 year old. And please don’t forget Ken, who has to be in the U.P., 7 hours away from his family. I could probably use your prayers as well. I’m doing pretty well considering, but only by the grace of God. Without Him, I would be a mess!!!
We appreciate all the prayers, messages and donations tthat we’ve been getting. It means the world to us, so thank you!
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Monday, April 11th
Well, I must say…I am so thankful that we got out yesterday and had a good time with family because today…not so fun! We arrived back at the hospital at 11:00. Jacob had to have another IV put in for bloodwork and for the surgery. He is not very fond of needles, so that didn’t go over so well. He had his surgery to put his port in at 1:00. It took an hour and a half. Everything went well. He was back in his room by 3:00 and starving since he hadn’t been able to eat since the night before. He chowed!!! He ate a ton of food. Later on, his Uncle Neil, Aunt Kristina and cousin Brady came, along with his Grandparents. It was a nice distraction since he wasn’t diggin’ the port and stitches. They finally started his chemo meds around 11:00 tonight and about a 1/2 hour into it, he ended up getting sick to his stomach. Thankfully it was only 1 time and hopefully it won’t happen again. Poor little guy! Such a hard thing to watch. If only I could take it all away and put it on myself. He such a strong boy. I’m so proud of him!
Please keep praying for Jacob as he continues chemo. That he won’t have any more nausea and vomiting and that his fatigue will be kept at a minimum. Also continue to pray that his physical therapy goes well and that he keeps progressing.
Thanks again for all your comments and messages. Jacob enjoys reading them as do I.
Sunday, April 10th
What a wonderful day! Jacob had a very light schedule for therapy. He was done by 1:30. It was gorgeous here, we couldn’t just sit around and waste the day, so we decided to break out of this joint. Ken’s sister Kim brought over a vehicle for me so I would have some wheels to get back and forth to all the appointments. It was just too tempting! We’ve been stuck in this place way too long, so we hopped in the new van and left for Hastings (the town where both my sisters and their families live). We had a wonderful time! It was 85 degrees and Jacob was loving the fresh air and the freedom. Along with all the cousin time. We were able to stay until 7:00 and it was nice to see and smooch on Caleb. Jacob and I had a hard time leaving though – back to reality.
Well, tomorrow is another big day for Jacob. We have to head back over to Helen DeVos Hospital at 11:00 for Jacob to get some blood work done and then he will have surgery at 1:00 to have his port put in. We will be staying there both Monday and Tuesday night as he will also be starting his chemotherapy. Please keep Jacob in prayer while he goes through another tough process over the next couple days. Thank you for all your prayers!
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Saturday, April 9th
I think today was by far the best day of all! Not only was therapy short and sweet, but they kept the work to a minimum and made most of it fun – Wii Fit, hand pedal bike video game, kick the soccer ball around, etc. He was done with therapy by 2:00, so we had the rest of the day free. We ended up getting a lot of company and that helps you forget where you’re at or what’s going on at the moment.
Let’s see….my sisters came and brought Caleb along with 4 of the cousins, my parents came and Ken’s Mom, sister Kim and her husband Dave. The best part is that Jacob and I actually got to leave rehab for a few hours to go out for dinner. Jacob was so excited! That was the first time he’s been out and about in almost 3 weeks. He was a little hyper. But then again I can’t blame the poor kid. We had a wonderful time and were bummed we had to come back. Can’t wait till he’s up and walking on his own. Please continue to pray for a speedy recovery! They are determined to make sure he is up and walking unassisted before they let him leave. We appreciate all the prayers we can get.
Friday, April 8th
Today was a little bit different of a day. Some of Jacob’s usual therapists were gone for training of some sort. It’s hard when you’re used to someone being there everyday and then all of a sudden they’re not. I think that kind of threw Jacob off, including myself. He still did good, but wasn’t as enthusiastic as he normally is. Most of his sessions today were all about strengthening his legs. He also did a lot of walking and he got to shoot a Nerf bow. He had a blast with that! Also, more Lego building while standing – always a hit!
Later this afternoon my sister and family (The Endsleys) brought Caleb up to see us. We had a great time visiting and the kids helped decorate Jacobs room. There are stars and planets hanging all over the walls and hanging from the ceiling. It’s a nice touch and makes it feel a little less like we’re living in a hospital. 🙂
It’s hard to believe that we’ve been in Grand Rapids for only 17 days. It feels like so much more than that. But at the same time, I realize that Jacob has come such a long way in such a short amount of time. Even though it’s so tough being here – seeing what Jacob is going through, that my sweet baby Caleb isn’t with his mom or dad, and my wonderful husband is alone 8 hours away – I have peace, total peace knowing that my Heavenly Father is in control. It’s out of my hands and in His. He has a plan…something greater than any of us could ever imagine. And the best part is? We get to be a part of it!
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