"Our Little Trooper"

"Our Little Trooper"
"Let me live, that I may praise you!" Psalm 119:175

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Day O (again)...the cells are in!

Today was the big day...the last link in the chain.  Transplant #2 Tuesday! 

But it ended up being a big day for more reasons than just that that one.  So far in his room today, Rowan has had a shunt series of xrays, an eeg, and abdominal ultrasound, had another central line placed in his groin, tons of labs and blood sugar checks, suctioning, changes to his vent settings, platelets twice, and red blood cells, etc.  Sometimes, two procedures were going on at the same time.  Add that to all of the regular iv meds and infusions he had going on and it amounted to one very crazy day, with dozens of people in and out all day long, bells ringing left and right, orders being changed frequently, and critical lab results being called again and again.


Then, two of his lovely Cancer Care Unit Nurses brought Brian's cells down to PICU to infuse them into Rowan over 4 hours.

As if going through a second transplant wasn't excitement enough, they also decided that Rowan needs to start dialysis.  He is extremely fluid overloaded, his electrolytes are all over the place, and he is now acidotic.  It's a scary place to be, terrifying to think of his little body dealing with everything he is currently, and us beginning the transplant today...but that is indeed where we are.  He will be getting hooked up to the dialysis machine within the next 30 minutes.

There was a lot to take in today, but you know what...we made it to day zero!  There were times I wasn't sure we would...but we did.  And at 5:10 pm Pacific time zone, Rowan's new stem cells finished entering into his body.  They came from his Daddy, and we are hoping and praying they will circulate through his vessels, take root in his bones and start multiplying like crazy.

Thank you Bri, for monitoring the transplant for us down here in PICU, and thank you for being the one who was watching Rowan closely enough on Sunday to know that he needed to be transferred to PICU immediately.  We thank God for your intuition and for taking action, and are so happy you could share this day with us as well.


Another person we were so thankful for today was our PICU bedside nurse from today. 

God truly placed him here with us today.  At one point this morning, when Brian was gone getting more lab work done, follow-up to his apheresis yesterday, I got a bit emotional here in the room after the doctors started explaining to me that Rowan needed dialysis.  Our nurse was charting out in the hall, noticed I was upset, came in the room, closed the door and the curtain for privacy and asked if he could help, and was I doing ok?  We chatted for a bit and he really helped calm me down.  Then he told me, "I worked all week.  Today was my day off.  They called me at 5 am and asked if I could come work overtime.  I think God wanted me here with you all today."  Can you imagine the sense of peace that gave me?  He didn't just take care of Rowan today, he also was there for Brian and I.

Rowan also had several other visitors from the Cancer Care Unit upstairs.  The PT/OTs brought me a green tea and a hug, several groups of nurses from his old floor stopped down to check on him, and encourage us, with a card or a hug, and the housekeeper from upstairs even came to check on us, with tears in her eyes.  It really helped on such a difficult day, knowing how many people have cared for him and grown to love him in the past 3 months here.

The highlight of the day came at one point when Brian, myself, our PICU nurse, and the BMT nurse all came around Rowan's bed and prayed together, with the EEG tech bowing his head at the foot of the bed as well.  It was a beautiful, emotional moment, and we felt like we were all in the right place today...exactly where we were supposed to be.

Rowan has a huge hill to climb as he not only gets through this transplant, but as he also now tackles all of these serious health issues on top of it, including dialysis.  We continue to remain faithful that God has all of us where he wants us, and that he is not done with Rowan yet.  These new cells made it into Rowan's body today for a reason.  We cannot wait to hear Rowan, awake, alert, praising God for saving his life.

As his life verse reminds us:

"Let me live, that I may praise you!"
Psalm 119:175

We are tucking him in now, and as they hook him up to dialysis, we thank God for another day...we thank him for another Day zero.


  1. Prayers for this sweet boy and Prayers for you and your family.

  2. My eyes are so full of tears I am not sure if im typing this right. God bless you Rowan for being you! We all love you and are praying hard little buddy! May God bless you now and forever!!!!!

  3. Prayers for you, Brian, Rowan, the care team and the rest of your family. Anxious times for all of you.

  4. Prayers for Rowan and his family. So glad the day was such a success. Your beautiful little man is now on his way to a successful transplant. We just know it. God is good. Love you sweet little man. Keep up the work. You are truly an inspiration.

  5. Carrie and Brian. What a testimony of true faith you all are to us. I have been praying constantly for God to continue to heal Rowan. That sweet boy is and will change lives and bring many to know Jesus. I know you are surrounded by so many living and caring people. I wish I had millions of dollars to give you. But I can offer help with anything else you may need. I love in Austin now so if Zoe or Ian every need ANYTHING do not hesitate to ask. 2106011720. Praying without ceasing! Norma (Ma OConnell)

  6. Tight hugs and much love to all of you. Praying for healing this side of Heaven.

  7. Praying for your sweet family. You are amazing and a true testimony to amazing faith! Wishing I had a million dollars to give you and super powers to heal him. Of course God will heal him!! This we know. I live in Austin now so if Zoe or Ian every need ANYTHING call me. 2106011720 PRAYING WITHOUT CEASING

  8. I am so thankful to God to hear that you were cared for yesterday, Carrie. I prayed so hard, the tears raced down my face for what seemed like hours. I begged God to take my health and give it to Rowan. I pleaded that you were renewed and felt God close by; that you both felt LOVE and were surrounded by people who lift you up. After my prayer, I felt numb, I was frozen for awhile in thought. A flood of emotions and then a calming. I rejected that calming, I wanted to suffer for Rowan. It consumed my day. I rushed this morning to see if there was an update. OH MY, GOD IS GREAT! It is so heartwarming to see God renewed you and surrounded you with love yesterday. I cant wait to see what God does through Rowan! Thinking and praying for you all day everyday! Truly appreciate the updates!It impacts my day and how I treat others. You all are doing God's work. Bless you!

  9. You are all such an inspiration. The lives you have all touched over the years. The prayers coming in from all over. Yes, God is not through with Rowan or any of you!!! I've never felt such power in His name with the true power of prayer. I know this story has a very long way to go. God has such a special purpose for Rowan. Love from Texas.

  10. I honestly don't know how you do it! Thank you so, SO much for letting us all be a small part of your lives, and keeping us updated with Rowan's progress. That boy of yours is loved so much by so many, and his faith is a testament to your and Brian's commitment to God. We all take strength from all of you, and we too, believe that God is in control. We pray with you that God will let him live, and know that we will praise Him.