We will always remember Ellie for her love for others, her creativity, sensitivity, and delight in life! Ellie's light has spread far and wide... may it continue to shine in our hearts.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A family of aliens

What does a family of aliens have to do with the Skees family? More than you might think! Ellie strongly wanted to trick or treat and had planned out what everyone would wear. So they all dressed in black and had glow sticks all around, including coming out of their aluminum foil heads! The four of them went to 3 specifically chosen houses, then to Grandpa Gary and Grandma Nancy's house. Ellie was pretty tired by the time it was all over, but she had the time of her life.

Another deep desire was fulfilled when Jill, a friend from New Tribes Mission, came over and brought Ellie a pumpkin to carve. Ellie and John got to carve it later and make a masterpiece!

Physically, Ellie's feeling better, but isn't eating as much as she needs to. She still gets tired quickly too. She will have her blood tested again on Thursday and will likely have a transfusion of platelets and maybe hemoglobin. Since all are hopeful that tomorrow will be uneventful, the next blog entry will be Thurday after Ellie receives her report from the blood tests.

Praise the Lord that Ellie and her family made some special memories today!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and particularly that she will eat more.

2.) For comfort, strength, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Hanging in there

Ellie went in to have her blood tested today. Her counts were a little low, but not low enough for a transfusion. She'll go back on Thursday to be checked again and probably have a platelet transfusion then. After having her blood tested this morning and then visiting her chiropractor, Ellie was able to eat lunch at a restaurant with John and Sarah. They took precautions to avoid unnecessary exposure to germs while there, and enjoyed a nice lunch.

Ethan spent the night at home last night, then went to Stan and Pat's during the day. He was back home again for the evening and some good family time.

Praise God for even little things.

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and that she will continue to be able to eat well.

2.) For comfort, strength, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Restful day

Nothing exciting happened today...and that's good! Ellie and Sarah had a restful, lazy day. Even though Ellie had some stomach pain, she pushed through it and was able to nibble on foods throughout the day. She's feeling better sooner this round! Sarah and her family support staff have continued to search out comfort measures that seem to be making the process easier.

Ethan had a great time with Stan today. Few things are more exciting to an almost 4-year-old boy than watching the tires be rotated on your Grandpa's truck!

Praise the Lord that Ellie's doing well!

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie to be healed and that she would be able to continue to eat.

2.) For comfort, strength, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort and security for Ethan.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Home again!

Sarah and Ellie were surprised to get the news this morning that they could go home! They packed up and arrived in their own abode at 2:30 this afternoon. Ellie is still in the time where the chemo is working and her body is feeling the effects, but she's happy to be home! She's also excited about 2 new fish! Over the next several days she will be struggling to deal with the pain and nausea well enough to eat. On Monday, they will go to have Ellie's blood tested and possibly have a transfusion.

John and Sarah would like to ask again that they not have visitors for a time because of how Ellie feels as well as her susceptibility to illness, but would love notes and cards and especially your prayers!

Praise God that Ellie is in the familiar surroundings of her home - and fish tank! Praise Him also that round 2 went fairly well!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and for her comfort in the next few days.

2.) For comfort, strength, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For Sarah in particular as she cares for Ellie by herself instead of having the help of hospital staff.

4.) For Ethan to adjust to a new schedule of daytime with Stan and Pat and nighttime at home.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Round Two Over

Sarah writes about today's highlights:
Round two of chemo is over!
Blood transfusion - her hemoglobin was low Clarification: Ellie's bone marrow test indicated that while there is still some disease present, there has been improvement since the initial testing (which happened before her first round of chemo). Her bone marrow will be tested before each round of chemo until we find that there is no disease present. Once this is determined, we will be able to have her stem cells harvested to be transplanted back into her at the end of chemo.

Today was Ellie's third and final day of her second round of chemo. Round two was not exactly as easy as I'd hoped but I have a theory that, while not based on medical knowledge, is rather logical and makes me feel better. The theory is this: strong negative reactions (in terms of chemo) equals powerful work on the part of the medication. I would much rather the chemo do it's job in a powerful way, even if it's unpleasant, than Ellie's body (most importantly, the cancer cells) become accustomed to the drugs. And now I must confess, lest any of you who like my theory think that I am exceptionally brilliant, I did have help thinking this through. For those of you who may disagree completely, my disclaimer is that I have absolutely no medical training and am a mother who has a deep need to put a positive spin on watching her daughter suffer (without it all having meaning, it just plain stinks - and I won't be having that!).

I'm tempted to breathe a giant sigh of relief that this round of chemo is over, but we are now heading into the arena of after-effects. Now begins the fight to get Ellie to eat while keeping the stomach, throat and mouth pain at bay. This was brutal last time, but we worked and fought and Ellie was a trooper. By the time we got back to the hospital to start round two, Ellie had actually gained weight - she was 54 lbs. To know how exciting this is to us, you have to realize that before finding out that she had cancer, the most Ellie (at a height of 4'2") had ever weighed before was 48 lbs.!! We have mounted a full scale nutritional attack! In this crazy world of cancer, there is so little that we can control that it feels really good to be able to research and execute a plan. We are whole-heartedly on board with the chemo doing it's work, and so we want to do our part in making her body strong and healthy to withstand the process. Our plan is to completely eliminate refined sugar, processed food, and chemicals of any kind. We have begun giving her whole, natural and organic foods. Lest any of you worry about the emotional state of an 8 year old who is denied sugar, we have people who are finding, buying and making sweet alternatives to refined sugar. All of this brings me to another theory - and this one is very simple, perhaps even "blonde" if you want to go there (and believe me, in the mode in which I now operate, you do NOT want to go there) Cancer = evil; Nutrition = good and which one always prevails? :-)

Well, enough of my babbling for this evening. I am too tired to look up the reference, but the verse that comes to mind is "I thank my God upon every remembrance of you" and it sums up my feelings for each and every one of you out there who are praying for us and loving us. That is what keeps us going every day. Thank you.

We appreciate your daily prayers for us, but I would like to ask that today you would focus your prayers on all of the things that we have to thank God for:

Knowledgeable and patient medical staff at the hospital who always have time to answer our never-ending supply of questions and concerns (we love you, Kristen).

The strength and grace from God that gets us through the days (and nights).

The special times of joy that our family has been able to have together.

Ellie's fighting attitude and ability to find joy in the simplest things. She had a fun time today petting and playing with dogs. And did you know that an 8 year old can sit comfortably at the base of an IV pole while it zooms across the room (with Uncle Michael at the helm)?

The always faithful family and friends who take care of us each and every day as we take care of our children and each other.

The list could go on and on, but I suspect that as you pray God will show you many more things to thank Him for!


Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Day two of chemo

Ellie did pretty well today. Sarah, along with medical personnel had to watch her closely and deal with situations such as low potassium, nausea, etc. The gave her a steroid shot for the nausea, so when that took effect she was able to eat. She ate quite a bit today which is really good. She can only have one steroid shot in a day, so when that wore off, she was nauseous again.

During the time she was feeling able, she played some computer games and did some crafts with the activities person at the hospital.

The bone marrow test from yesterday didn't show improvement, but this is early in the treatment.

Praise the Lord that she's nearing the end of round two!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and for her comfort during this process.

2.) For comfort, strength, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

4.) That the chemo would be effective.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Day one of round two

Ellie started her second round of chemo at 11:30 a.m. She spent some time in the playroom, but then began the vomiting and other uncomfortable reactions. She's also quite sore from the bone marrow test this morning.

John and Sarah have not received the results of this morning's test yet. Hopefully that will be soon.

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and for her comfort. Pray that she can get some rest.

2.) For strength, comfort, and wisdom for John and Sarah. Also that they would have the perseverance needed to handle the long haul.

3.) For comfort and security for Ethan while he's staying with Stan and Pat.

4.) For strength and wisdom for Stan and Pat as they care for Ethan.

A message from Sarah

Last night we settled in at the hospital. John made countless trips to the car to bring up the loads of things I had packed. Hey, a girl's gotta have her stuff... besides, Ellie's just like her mamma - we must feel at home wherever we go (perhaps remnants of my past semi-nomadic lifestyle?) We are now comfortably ensconsed in our little nest - complete with throw pillows and a lamp (you KNOW that I can't live in flourescent light...).

So far we have had two of the nurses that we are already familiar with, and we even got the biggest room on the floor, so life isn't all that bad. :-) Ellie had a bone marrow aspiration and biopsy this morning. She was nervous about the idea, but she was calm and the drugs did their job. I only stayed in the room until she fell asleep, but John remained by her side through the whole proceedure. She is now coming out of the groggy stupor, watching TV and eating slushies. The nurse will come in and start the chemo in a few minutes. A special bonus here at the hospital is that our Dr. got his degree in marine biology before he became an oncologist, so we have gotten extra special help and advise on our new fish tank.

Ethan had a hard time last night when we told him that he had to spend the night with Stan and Pat. He loves being at their house, but he is now afraid that when he goes he might not come home for weeks. When the hospital called to tell us that there was a room available, Ethan was so upset. The song that was playing on our sterio at the time was Twila Paris' "Do I trust you, Lord?" so I held Ethan while he cried and gently danced around the front room to the music. Later, when it was time to go Ethan started crying again. We sat on the floor in a corner of the kitchen and prayed that God would help him. He asked me if God would go with him, and then he wanted it know if God was bigger than Ellie, me, and EVEN Daddy. After assuring him that yes, God is the biggest and would be with hiim the whole time, we sang "My God is so BIG" and then he cheerfully kissed me goodbye and calmly went with Papi and Bubbie. I was so proud of him and thankful that we can trust God to take care of Ethan as well. I have been so burdened for Ethan's emotional state during all of this, but God clearly impressed on my heart that if we can trust him with Ellie during this time, that we can certainly trust that He will take care of Ethan as well.

I just wanted to thank all of you who have been praying for us and thinking of us during this past month. It means more to us than we can ever convey to you. I just wanted to leave you with a verse that God has used to comfort my heart. Isaiah 40:11 "He will feed his flock like a shepherd. He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to His heart. He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young." Ellie and Ethan have been held close to the heart of their Shepherd, and I have been led so gently over the roughest terrain. (And I suspect that this verse also applies to daddy sheep in situations such as these. God has given John the most amazing strength - he has been my greatest comfort during this time.) God has been answering your prayers in the most wonderful way.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Back to the hospital

Ellie enjoyed a nice day today, then the hospital called this evening to say that a bed was available. So Ellie's now back at the hospital. Tomorrow there will be some tests, then round 2 of the chemo will begin.

This round may go more smoothly now that John, Sarah, and Ellie know more of what to expect. They have found some good comfort measures to help Ellie along the way.

John and Sarah ask that just as with the first chemo round, that Ellie not have visitors for 2 weeks. During the first week, she feels too sick, and during the second week, her immunity is gone. They again express their thanks for your continued prayers and understanding.

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and that this chemo round would be successful and go smoothly.

2.) For strength, wisdom, and comfort for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Back to church!

Ellie had a social day today. She was able to attend an hour of church and really enjoyed seeing everyone there. Later in the day she wanted to see John's cousin Kristen, so they enjoyed some special time together.

There won't be a bed available at the hospital tomorrow, but possibly Tuesday. This extra time is good because Ellie can continue to work on trying to gain weight. She's always been thin, so she needs to keep what she has and even put more on.

Praise God for the time with friends and family today!

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's healing and that she will gain weight before going into the next round.

2.) For comfort, strength, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

4.) That this next round of chemo will go smoothly.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Good blood

Ellie's blood levels were good yesterday, so she didn't need a transfusion. She will be back in the hospital to begin her next round of chemo either Monday or Tuesday depending on when a bed becomes available.

Yesterday Ellie was able to visit her school and tell her classmates as well as a couple other classes about her experiences. It was great for her to see everyone and to be able to tell them all about what's going on with her.

Praise God for His graciousness and that Ellie's blood levels are maintaining!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and that the upcoming treatments will go well.

2.) For strength, comfort, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

A nice day

Today was a nice day in that Grandma Nancy came over and watched Ellie and Ethan while John and Sarah got to spend a good part of the day together. Ellie had a friend over for a while and enjoyed some play time. She also got 6 new fish for her fish tank. Also, every night John and Sarah are enjoying a special time of reading and snuggling with the kids before bedtime.

Tomorrow Ellie will have her blood levels checked again to see if they are maintaining on their own.

Praise the Lord for special family time!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie.

2.) For strength, comfort, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort for Ethan.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

A new plan

The plan as of now is for Ellie to continue treatment here at Arnold Palmer through her fifth round of chemo. Then John and Sarah in agreement with the doctors hope to transfer Ellie to Sloan - Kettering for some specialized treatment there.

The surgery to remove the mother tumor as well as the harvesting of the bone marrow is tentatively planned for after the second chemo round.

Ellie is still doing well at home.

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's healing and strength of mind and purpose.

2.) For John and Sarah to have the strength and wisdom they need.

3.) For Ethan to feel comforted and secure.

4.) For continued financial provision.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Second opinion

John and Sarah are looking to get a second opinion from Sloan - Kettering Cancer Center in New York, NY. The doctors from both Arnold Palmer and Sloan - Kettering will converse to work out when would be the best time for Ellie to go.

Ellie had her blood tested today and although the platelets were a little low, they did not give her a transfusion. They will be taking a few extra days to watch her levels to see if they are up just because of the transfusions or if her body is able to maintain. The schedule as of now is to begin the second round of chemo on Monday.

Ellie's doing well and is enjoying time with family and occasionally a friend.

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's healing and that her blood levels would maintain.

2.) For John and Sarah to have comfort, wisdom, and direction.

3.) For Ethan to feel secure and comforted.

4.) For financial provision, especially in regards to Sloan - Kettering.

Monday, October 16, 2006

New options?

After research and conversations with the oncologists at Arnold Palmer, John and Sarah are looking at Sloan - Kettering Cancer Center in New York, NY. This center is special in that it has a neuroblastoma program that has 4 pediatric oncologists on staff who only work with the neuroblastoma patients. They are the neuroblastoma experts of the country!

Tomorrow Ellie will have her blood levels tested at Arnold Palmer and if needed she will have a platelet transfusion. They will also begin planning for the next round of chemo. She's on a 21 day cycle which would mean that the next round would begin on Friday if they stay with that schedule.

Ellie is enjoying her time at home. She had her second cousin Alex over for a couple hours today to play. Their time together was much shorter than they wanted, but it meant a lot to both of them.

Praise the Lord that Ellie is feeling pretty well!

Please pray:

1.) That Ellie would be healed and that she would be strong going in to her next treatment.

2.) That John and Sarah would have the wisdom they need to make the next steps.

3.) For comfort and security for Ethan.

4.) That God would provide in the area of finances.

Sunday, October 15, 2006


Ellie was able to check out of the hospital and go home about 1:00 today!! Once back home, she got to see her brand new room that's her very own! (She's been sharing with Ethan). Her grandparents Gary and Nancy got her a fishtank for her birthday, so that's a special treat too!

Ethan returned home today too after several days of staying with his grandparents Stan and Pat. Ellie's request was that the four of them - John, Sarah, Ellie, and Ethan - snuggle together in one bed for a while before bedtime. She's very glad to be home with her whole family.

Praise God for this special time of being home together.

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and that she would enjoy her time home.

2.) For wisdom and comfort for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort and security for Ethan.

*Please read comments below - Sarah had something to say!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Ready to play

Ellie's ready to play now, but even being pushed around in her wheelchair can quickly exhaust her. It doesn't diminish her enthusiasm though! She gets in some fun before she needs to rest. The pain is managable and her white blood cell count is up quite a bit. She will receive a plasma transfusion tomorrow. Then hopefully sometime next week, she'll be able to go home! She'll have some days/weeks of recovery there before the next chemo round.

Today Stan and Pat spent the afternoon with Ellie at the hospital while Sarah got a much needed break by attending a baby shower for a good friend. Stan and Pat had some great quality time with Ellie, and Sarah got some relaxation and laughs. Ethan spent the day with friends too.

Praise God for His constant provision and love and that Ellie is improving!

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's healing and that all will go well for her to go home soon.

2.) For wisdom and strength for John and Sarah.

3.) For comfort and security for Ethan.

4.) For strength and comfort for family members who are helping in different ways.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Looking up

Ellie's blood count took a jump up today so she has felt pretty well. It has been a bit difficult to allow her to move around and enjoy herself without letting her become exhausted! It's good to see her rebounding.

Praise: That Ellie's blood count is up!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie and that she will continue to feel better.

2.) For wisdom and strength for John and Sarah.

3.) For Ethan and those caring for him.

Small improvments

Ellie's pain is a little better and she's eating slightly better. She still needs to eat more. Her blood counts are still very low and the main goal right now is to get them up. The daily shot is for that purpose.

Her hair is coming out quite a bit now. It should all be gone soon. At first, seeing the hair come out was upsetting for Ellie, but now she's okay with it.

Ellie's days are rather up and down. Sometimes she feels quite a bit of pain and sometimes things are quite managable. She tires very quickly because of the low blood count. We are hopeful that things will continue to slowly improve.

Please pray:

1.) For peace, comfort, and healing for Ellie.

2.) That her blood levels would come up.

3.) For strength, rest, and wisdom for John and Sarah.

4.) Comfort and peace for Ethan and those caring for him.

"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God ... and it will be given to him." (James 1:4-6) God knows what's best for Ellie and he will guide John and Sarah along this path toward healing.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

No big change

Ellie is much the same today. There is pain and other side effects. She has received some blood transfusions and will most likely receive more in the next day or so.

She has allowed the music thereapy guy from the hospital to come in and entertain her. She was reluctant when he first came a couple weeks ago, but now really enjoys when he comes.

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's peace, strength, comfort, and healing.

2.) For wisdom and strength for John and Sarah as they try to help her cope.

3.) For Ethan and other family as they continue with life that is different.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Life with chemo

Ellie is continuing to feel the effects of the chemo treatments. They are not still being administered, but they are doing their work. Because chemo kills the blood cells, Ellie's immunity is virtually nonexistant, and she has a fever which indicates infection. She will be given antibiotics for that. Small doses of morphine are helping her to be able to eat a little. Some good news is that Ellie's sodium level seems to be maintaining.

Ellie's struggle these days are expected struggles for chemo patients. That doesn't make it easier, but it is not a cause to be discouraged. Please continue to "Pray without ceasing".

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's comfort, strength, and healing.

2.) That effort to help Ellie to be more comfortable would be successful.

3.) For sustaining grace for John, Sarah, Ethan, and family.

Sunday, October 08, 2006


Ellie is feeling the effects of the chemo. It's causing quite a bit of pain in the abdomen. She has eaten very little today. Although her bowels are not quite right, she is not having diarrhea now. Also, there is good news in that the tests done as a result of her diarrhea yesterday showed that nothing else is going on.

Consider the words of this song:

"Sometimes He calms the storm, tells the winds to 'Peace, be still'. He can settle any sea, but that doesn't mean He will. Sometimes He holds us close, and lets the wind and waves go wild. Sometimes He calms the storm, other times He calms His child."

He is sustaining Ellie.

Please pray:

1.) That Ellie's pain will ease away, and for her healing.

2.) For strength for John, Sarah, Ethan, and other family as the long haul is wearying.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Side effect

Ellie had some trouble with diarrhea today. Diarrhea is a common side effect of chemo, but they are testing to make sure nothing else is going on.

Ellie has been in good spirits and is being strong through unpleasantness like the daily shot.

Ethan visited with some friends today and had a great time. Someone else's toys are so much fun! He had some time with Sarah today too.

Praise: Ellie's good attitude! It's helpful to her and an encouragement to those around her.

Please pray:

1.) That Ellie would stop having trouble with diarrhea.

2.) For daily strength and encouragement for John, Sarah, Ethan, and family.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Primary source

The doctors have been able to find the primary source of the cancer! It is in the left adrenal gland. Ellie's sodium is low, but still in the safe range. She's been in good spirits through the pain from the cancer as well as the pain from the shot. The family is so thankful to see her strength and spirit through this.

Praise: They found the primary source!

Please pray:

1.) For healing for Ellie

2.) For comfort and strength for John, Sarah, Ethan, and the family.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

The next step

Ellie's sodium dropped to lower than it should be, but remained in the safe range. She did pretty well with the reinstated chemo drug last night and today. This evening she will receive her first shot to stimulate white blood cell growth. To help Ellie face the shot, John is going to allow his Aunt Melanie to give him a saline shot. He's a good dad! Ellie will get this shot once a day for the next 10-14 days. John will be the one to administer the upcoming shots, especially once Ellie is home.

Ellie is still weak, has pain, and is by no means feeling well, but she was able to walk a little today. Also, she had a lot of fun decorating some scarecrow cookies! As if that wasn't enough, her Aunt Kathy got her a Baby Alive doll which has gotten an enthusiastic response from Ellie!

Over all, it was a good day and everyone is thankful that Ellie reacted fairly well to yesterday's chemo.

Please pray:

1.) For Ellie's strength and healing.

2.) That the MIBG test will show the source of the cancer.

3.) Continued strength for John, Sarah, Ethan, and the rest of the family.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Finishing this round

Ellie's sodium rose to proper levels today so the doctors were able to readminister the chemo drug that had been stopped. Tomorrow will tell how Ellie will respond to it. After the completion of the chemo round, Ellie will be administered a daily shot that will help stimulate white blood cell growth. The MIBG test is still scheduled for tomorrow.

Ellie had a pretty good day today. Her job right now is to concentrate on eating, drinking, and resting. Hopefully this round of chemo will be over soon and she will have some time of feeling better.

Ethan got to spend time with Sarah today. They got to play together at the Ronald McDonald house playroom and have a meal together. That meant a lot to both Ethan and Sarah.

Please pray:

1.) That Ellie will tolerate the chemo drug.

2.) That the MIBG test will provide helpful information.

3.) That all family members, especially Ethan, will be comforted and will adjust to life being different.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Test results and more tests to come

Ellie continued receiving the one chemo drug today. She was fairly comfortable so it was a blessing that she was able to rest and eat. Tomorrow the doctor may try to continue the drug that was suspected of causing the seizure. They've been monitoring Ellie's sodium and will see how it is tomorrow.

John and Sarah received the results of the bone marrow test, and the results show that the cancer has spread to the bone marrow. The doctors plan to harvest some of Ellie's bone marrow soon and at the end of the 6 cycles of chemo, she will have a bone marrow transplant.

Ellie is scheduled for a test called an MIBG on Thursday to look for the primary source of the cancer. It will be helpful to the doctors when they find the location where the cancer started.

The hospital is really good about having special entertainment for the kids. So while Ellie was resting today, a magician came by and did a show just for her. She enjoyed his tricks and got to laugh a little. We'll count this as a good day.

Please pray:

1.) That Ellie will tolerate the treatments.

2.) For physical and emotional strength for John, Sarah, and extended family.

3.) For brother Ethan as he misses normal life.

Monday, October 02, 2006


While receiving chemo treatments yesterday, Ellie experienced a seizure. The cause of the seizure was low sodium, but doctors are still looking for the cause of the low sodium. They discontinued one of the treatment drugs for the time being in response. Tomorrow John and Sarah will meet with the doctor to find out what needs to be done next. Today should have been the last day of this round of chemo, but John and Sarah are unsure about what tomorrow will bring in that respect.

We are thankful that Ellie had a fairly comfortable, restful day today.

Please continue to pray:
1.) For wisdom for those making decisions

2.) For strength, rest, and healing for Ellie

3.) Continued strength for the family

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Day two of chemo

Today was Ellie's second day of chemotherapy. Throughout the pain, nausea, and reactions to the treatment, Ellie has really shown her inner strength. She is bearing up under the difficulty and is adapting well by learning to trust the medical staff. She will have more chemo tomorrow, then have 18 days off of treatment.

Ellie's immune system will be weakened by the chemo treatments and rest is very important right now. For these reasons, John and Sarah are asking that Ellie not have visitors at this time. They are so appreciative of your love and care for them. Your notes of encouragement have been a huge blessing. If you would like to visit them in the future, please call or email Ginger. She will take your name and number in order to contact you when Ellie is able to receive visitors. If you don't know how to reach Ginger, post a comment to this blog and she will get it.

Please continue to send your notes and emails of encouragement. They are reading them and receiving comfort from knowing that many of you are thinking of and praying for them.

Please pray specifically for Ellie's physical strength, that she would handle the treatments, and for her inner strength.
Please pray for Sarah, Nancy, and John’s aunts as they care for Ellie at this time.

Thank you from all of the family.