Kim was diagnosed with AML Leukemia on July 22, 2009, just after she finished high school. She'd been feeling well, just showing a few bruises when she went to Primary Childrens Medical Center for a heart surgery to fix a relatively minor condition she's had since she was born. A blood test before the surgery showed that her blood had been completely taken over by the cancer. They admitted her that day and began treatment right away. She went through five long rounds of chemotherapy, doing relatively well, with the exception of one infection that led to a very scary stay in the Pediatric ICU. She spent almost all of that time in the hospital, with just a few breaks to go home. By the end of March 2010 she was allowed to go home for good- officially in remission! She was so excited to finally go to USU Fall semester, and got strait A's in all of her classes! Psychology, Humanities, Family Finance and ANATOMY. Not a week after finals, at a regular check up at PCMC, her blood tests showed that her cancer was back. And thus began round two- Kim's goal was to make it to a bone marrow transplant. We had found a donor, so all that was left was to get her in remission once more. After three rounds of chemotherapy, her body was no longer strong enough to keep fighting, no matter that her spirit was. She will always be with us. 7:48 pm, March 31, 2011

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Kim is in a coma. Not doing well. Sorry, things are so hard. Please pray for us.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sorry for the long break everyone... I've had a really tired few days. Kim is doing okay, but not any better than she was the last time I posted. Still has the infection, still no PICC line, so still on an IV they move every day or three, when her vein starts going bad. Still having fevers, still throwing up. Still no blood counts.

Yesterday, though, Dr Barnette, her primary, told mom and Kim that they think the last round of chemo that she had might have killed off her marrow, and if so, she'll never get blood counts back, and so will probably never get over the infection- without the bone marrow transplant. Though it will be risky to move ahead while she still has the infection, they might have to. They are going to do one more bone marrow test, during which they will also extract a small piece of her hip bone, for one more check, before they decide what to do for sure. That will probably be a week from today.

Aside from that... as I said, things haven't really changed much. We are still worried about Kim, but keeping optimistic (just don't talk to mom.) I am very glad to see that many of you have signed up for relay for life! Just two more weeks! And we had our first donation- special thanks to the Kent Family!

It will be okay. Thank you ALL- Love, Emily

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Kim is still battling that infection. She's had a fever most of the day, so they've completely stopped talking about giving her a PICC line. It seems like steps backwards, doesn't it?
We need her body to start growing back blood, so that she can fight this off and move on.
Mike's birthday is this Friday, and we're probably all going to spend the weekend in Salt Lake.
I haven't really been doing much for Relay for Life- but it is coming up soon. Just a couple more weeks.
Thanks, everyone. We love you.

Monday, March 21, 2011

No PICC line today- they are still finding yeast in her blood cultures - it will be at least a couple more days of IVs. (It takes a few days of peatry dish time before these things grow- so, if it's gone now, we still have to wait until nothing grows from her blood.)
Other than that, doing okay. She only threw up once today. And our grandma Marie came to visit! And so did Uncle Larry and Aunt Dianna. And Larry probably doesn't have cancer at all! So, in many ways, today was very wonderful, too. Thank you!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Hi Friends!

Today was beautiful. The days since Mike has been home have been quite hectic, and we haven't really had much time to spend with just the five of us. Five? It's surreal having a whole family again, even if it was just for a few hours today.

Kim has been gradually doing better- her kidneys are functioning, her fevers have come down, and she's gradually being taken off of one medication at a time. They feel that the infection in her blood is gone, taken care of with the removal of her central line, and anti-fungal and antibiotic medications. The plan is to place a PICC line in her arm tomorrow- she's still living with IVs in both arms. The PICC line, rather than placing another central line, as they will have to eventually, is just a step. She still has virtually no blood counts, and would have a difficult time recovering from the more intense procedure that the central line would need. We're just looking forward to no more IVs! Though they have them placed in her wrists rather than hands now, they are still quite painful for her.

There hasn't been any talk as to her transplant, starting another round, or coming home. Everything has been put on hold as they've been trying to get her stable again. It looks like we're finally getting there- and thank goodness, it didn't take a trip to PICU this time!

There is yet another bone marrow aspirate (test) planned for later this week. Though she's had two already, they really aren't a good indication until she starts to produce marrow again, which she hasn't, yet. Then they'll know if the leukemia is growing back as well.

Things take much longer now, than they used to. Kim's body is at its breaking point- and it's scary to think that she still has a ways to go, and the transplant will be harder than anything she's done yet. But she's still Our Kim, and as always- she keeps running!

Thank you for being the wind beneath our wings.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Hi my dear friends,

I just wanted you to know that Kim is doing well. Not much has changed, but in small ways she is doing better. They've taken her off of one of her antibiotics, and are slowly decreasing the amount of fluids they give her, which means her kidneys are starting to function just a little bit better. She is still making do with IVs in her hands/arms, because they haven't wanted to risk the infection that an internal line might cause.

I just wanted to thank all of you again for all of the support you've been giving her. It's just as hard as it's ever been- even harder, in ways, and we always need you more than ever. Thank you.

To the McDonalds- thanks for the Irish Luck basket! The green decorations have been fun for the holiday!

To the McClungs- Thanks as always for your adorable packages! They're always winners.

To the Nolans and Rawlinsons- thank you for always posting your support.

To Melissa- thank you, dear, for spending the weekend with Kim so mom, dad and I could pay attention to Mike. It was hard leaving her, but I know you took good care of her.

Ah, you know how individual thanks are- of course I'm going to leave people out. But I love you all, so much, for what you've been doing for my family. Thank YOU!

And hey- those new wristbands will work great for St. Patrick's Day!

Oh- one more side note. These late posts are almost always done as I'm falling asleep, and usually from my phone. After the first paragraph, it doesn't automatically keep up with where I am typing- so I make a lot of errors. I decided long ago not to let it bother me- and even though I usually notice as I'm posting it... I tend to just let it go. Maybe some day I'll go through and edit them. Until then- I know you love me anyway!

Goodnight! Love, Emily

Monday, March 14, 2011

Ah! I've been so lazy! Fortunately, many of you came to Mike's Homecoming and got updates on Kim in person. To the rest of you- sorry! It has been a crazy week.

Kim has been having a bit of a rough time this past while. Friday we learned that she had a yeast infection growing in her blood, so they needed to remove her central line, as yeast infections tend to cluster around foreign objects like that. Her kidney function has been improving, and her nausea has mostly gone, but she still has mouth sores that make it difficult for her to eat, so they still have her on IV nutrition.

A CT scan showed that most of her organs are looking good, but she does have ovarian cysts which are probably contributing to the abdominal pain she's been having. Alon with bed sores and hemroids, and feet that still haven't quite healed up- she's still in a lot of pain.

Her central line was removed Friday afternoon. She's having to have all of her medications and fluids through IVs that have been placed in both hands (but were later moved a little higher up her arms, much to her relief- the hand IVs really hurt her.)

Today we learned that the doctors aren't seeing any yeast in her blood anymore, but she is still having fevers, so we don't know what else could be going on. They are considering placing a PICC line in her arm tomorrow, but we'll have to are.

For now, she's being kept pretty sedated, but we think she's over-all coming along alright. Her second, double- check bone marrow test is Wednesda. No plans for the transplant or coming home yet, but we are hoping to get there soon.

Thank you all for your support of our family! Seeing so many of you with her wristbands makes us all so happy :). ( If you still need one- let me know!)

Lots of love-

The Nelsons

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wow. The past few days have been a lot of the same old story- Kim's been feeling pretty crummy and is on loads of meds and liquids. Her test on Monday went well- her hip isn't too sore from the marrow draw.

Alright, that was everything I should have told you a day or two ago- now to today. And yes- wow.

Mike is HOME. Dad, mom and I picked him up at the airport around seven, and brought him right here to the hospital. Our family is finally together again. It's such an incredible feeling. Technically, Kim and I are at the hospital still, and Mike went home with our parents, but we were together for about an hour :) Now we just need to get Kim home!

Now, as to Kim's test results. Technically, we got them back today- but the doctors want to wait another week or so and do another aspirate- just to be sure. But... Let's just say things looked good. Now we just need to start healing!

Make sure to come to Mike's hecong this Saturday, if you can. See more details on his blog. I willtry too return ails tomorrow- sorry
I Love you all- what an amazing day! Thanks!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Oh, poor Kim. She is so miserable. She has just been in souch pain lately, and her nausea is still Terrible. Her blood counts Are coming up a tiny bit, so we're hoping her body will start healing. She's under a hundred pounds now, poor little thing.
Still no news, really. A lot depends on how Monday's test goes.
Thank you all so much-

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Next Test witll be Monday!

Funny story for you:

I just spoke with Kim, and she was telling me about her day. The conversation went more or less like this:

Kim: "All I've done today is thrown up! At least ten times! I swear I've never thrown up this much in my whole life put together! At least I've been able to work it out though- I ordered some really great ice cream, and it was so delicious! It didn't even taste all that bad when I threw it right back up. So then I ordrered up some more! I haven't thrown that back up yet, but just thinking about it... urhhhg.... hold on...."

Mom: "Hi, Em. Kim's throwing up again. But how was your day?"

:) For all that she's still feeling so crummy, she is just a little bit better than she was Sunday, so we're grateful for that.

As I said in today's title, we have the date for her next bone marrow aspirate: this Monday. As you know, we really, really need her leukemia count to be under 8%. It was still at 15 after her last test. If it's under 8, they should be going ahead with the transplant round. If it's not, I really don't know what will happen.

So, again, and as always, please pray extra hard for Kim and her upcoming test.

Mike will be home in one week! Are you coming to his homecoming?