17 July 2008

Needed: Happy Mail for Miss Malia

Hello Everyone!!

My heart has just been breaking ~we got word this past weekend that my cousins daughter, Malia (ma-lee-ah) who just turned 3 in May was recently diagnosed with a form of cancer called Hepatoblastoma which is a very rare cancerous tumor which originates in the liver.

It started right before the fourth of July when she started getting tummy aches and then vomited abruptly. She had a fever for one night but then all seemed well. One night, about a week and a half later, she had some really really bad stomach pains. For the next few days, she had a low grade fever off. On Friday the 11th, her Mom called the doctor because she had a little tinge of blood in her pull-up. Her Mom then found a hard spot on the right side of her tummy (which she thought was apendicitis but soon found she was wrong). At the ER, they took pictures of her belly and found a huge mass near her liver which needed to be looked at by other doctors. They went to Phoenix Children's Hospital on Saturday, July 12th and after taking more pictures and some blood tests the doctors knew that they had to do surgery and during that surgery they confirmed that it was cancer and took it out.

Forward to Tuesday, July 15th: Here are words from her mom: We spoke with the oncologist this morning and even though we are not 100% out of the woods yet things are looking really positive at this point. We still need to wait for the microscopic pathology reports to confirm that there is no more tumor in the liver and that it is indeed Hepatoplastoma. The working assumption right now is that it is Hepatoplastoma. As far as the liver goes, it was at stage 2 and she will need at least a moderate level of chemo. Now there's one thing that I did not mention last night and that is on the 2nd CT scan there was another area of concern (for lack of a better word). There was a little something that showed up near the heart. Now I can't remember what he called it but he said that it could be a simple little cyst that is made up of abnormal lung tissue. Many people have them without knowing it and they are generally only found when a CT scan is being performed to find something else. He said that's what it appeared to be on film but they need to check it to make sure that it is not another tumor. Because Hepatoblastoma's favorite place to spread is the lungs, this would be an odd place to find it but if it was indeed a tumor, it would mean that the cancer was at stage 4 rather than stage 2. Obviously we are hoping that it's just a cyst. The main goal for Malia over the next couple days is to rest and that's it. We probably will not receive pathological updates until Thursday at the earliest and then when she's ready, they will use a scope to check out this little thing near the heart. Depending on those findings, that will determine when and how much chemo she will receive. We are certain, however, that we will not be going home until she has received her first round. Keep in your hearts, thoughts, and prayers that this "thing" near her heart is a simple little cyst and that what they pulled from our girl's body was the Hepatoblastoma and nothing was left behind. That way we can start on treatment to ensure that it never comes back. Many thanks and much love to you all.

Soo..with that all being said I asked her family if it would be ok if I spread the word amongst my "stampin' friends". If you would be willing and have the time could you please send Malia one of your hand stamped card creations? It doesn't have to be fancy by any means but I think she will absolutely love to receive "get well mail" ;o) Her Mom and Aunts have gotten into stamping lately too -- so I know they will appreciate all of your different creations!

Here is her address:
Miss Malia
3330 E. Canary Way
Chandler, AZ 85286

Thanks soo much for your loyal readership here and I will thank you ahead of time for any cards you are able to send ~ You'll make her day a little brighter!

I'll keep you updated with her continued progress ;o)

Stampin' Huggs to all of you!!


love2Bcreative said...

Malia's Mom just posted this note so I thought I'd pass it along:

A quick update and then I really have to get some sleep. Malia is now out of PICU and back up on the specialty unit floor. Obviously we are pleased that the doctors felt she was well enough to move but I can honestly say that I would have preferred to stay in the ICU.

Yesterday she gave us a little scare when she had some problems breathing. We're fairly confident, however, that it was the result of pain which caught her off guard and she simply forgot to breathe correctly. She hasn't had another episode like that, thank God; because it took about 10 years off my life! To manage her pain better, they took out her epidural and now have her on morphine. She's doing much better with the exception of not coughing when she has to in order to avoid the sharp pain that comes along with that. We're trying to work on helping her deal with that better but she's 3 and doesn't understand.

We should have updates tomorrow with the final pathology report findings as well as when the procedure will be to determine the makeup/removal of the "thing" near her heart. That will help them determine the next step in her treatment.

Thank you again to all for the endless stream of supportive postings, emails, and offers. We are overwhelmed with gratitude that we have so much support from everyone. We cherish you all!

We'll keep you posted and thank you again!

Scrappingalz said...

I'll get a card out to her this weekend. In the meantime my thoguhts and prayers are with your family.

Dragana Skoro said...

Oh my God Teresa!!! I hope everything goes well for her. I have two little ones and can't imagine what it would be like to have to go through something like this. I will send my card to the address... Do you need more of us to spread the word and get more happy mail for her? I could post the link to your blog on mine and see if anyone jumps in... She is in my thoughts.

Vicki Sullivan said...

Saying prayers for Malia. I'll try to get a card out to her.

Beedubya said...

Consider it mailed. I'm sending some serious positive energy her way. Take care,


Anonymous said...

Mailing off a card to Malia today... Judy and her whole family are in our thoughts and prayers. Auntie CJ

PS: Know your leaving for your trip... have a fun time!

love2Bcreative said...

Hello Everyone!
Thanks soo much for your cards and prayers ~ they will soo appreciate it!

One of you had asked if you could spread the word on your blog -- wow! That is an awesome idea and I would absolutely love it and welcome it ;o) THANKS!!

I'll be posting more updates as soon as I hear any new news ~

Stampin' Huggs~

Tegan said...

what a gorgeous little girl :)

my best wishes for her and her family