Goodbye 2020

Thank you to those of you who said an extra prayer that Ryan would get through Christmas without an ER visit - it worked! After getting the transfusions on December 23rd, he ended up feeling really good for Christmas Eve and Day - a Christmas miracle if you ask me. When he went in the Monday after Christmas for his clinic appointment, his hemoglobin count had increased and he didn't need any further transfusions - Hallelujah!

Luckily we were able to enjoy the second week of the holiday break and just relax and recharge. We, like many, celebrated New Year's Eve over Zoom, barely making it to 12:30am before crashing. Honestly, this was fine by me; as a resident of the Midwest, I always say that the better time to start the new year would be sometime in the spring, when you have summer to look forward to. In my opinion, January is not typically worth celebrating. But as always, we're reflecting on the ups and downs of the past year and counting our blessings going into the new one.

Usually I get really excited to fill out my planner for the year and look ahead to all the upcoming plans. This year feels quite a bit different. When I sat down to write goals and look ahead, it felt almost painful after the trauma of so many plans and expectations being ripped apart this year. It's easy to be afraid of what the future could possibly bring. But each day I fight that fear and try to remind myself that there's an equally good chance, if not more, that the future is bright.

We were lucky to have Ryan's sister, Lisa, stay with us for five days this week. Having her here was a godsend as Ryan and I both started back at work. She was able to take him to his appointment on Monday, which ended up being the shortest one yet. They were supposed to start the second month of consolidation, which is very similar to the regimen from last month. However, since the first two weeks are so intense, it's count-dependent. Ryan's hemoglobin and platelet counts were higher but his ANC (absolute neutrophil count - a measure of his immune system) still wasn't high enough, so they postponed the treatment a week. They had already told us this wasn't uncommon, so it didn't come as a surprise - and I don't think Ryan was too upset to have another week of feeling good before heading back into intensive treatment.

The past few weeks have been a nice physical and mental break, and have somewhat recharged us so that we can get through the inevitably challenging month ahead. In the meantime, we're sending love to all of you, and wishes for a happy and safe new year!