Little fighters stories:
Please feel free to read all the stories of our little fighters. PLEASE NOTE: Not all the photographs in our Little Fighters Albums are nice to look at. Some of the photographs depict the horrid realities of Childhood Cancer. Sensitive viewers should be mindful.
Born 20 September 2011
Ethan was just like any other toddler… full of life and cute as a button! He was so lucky to have his Dad feel a lump in his right leg. We did not hesitate to get to a pediatrician right away and after a scan, a MRI and finally a biopsy, it was confirmed to be a cancerous growth.
Ethan was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma of the right leg muscle at 16 months old with the ray of hope that it had not yet spread. We started a 5 day chemotherapy session immediately after insertion of a port which was an adjustment beyond words. Our entire lives and how we lived it had changed. Days in hospital replaced outings to the park, check-ups replaced trips to the mall; low blood counts replaced visits to family and friends.
Life was about keeping everything clean and sterilized, keeping Ethan free from fevers, and declining invitations, explaining his disease over and over to everyone. Life was exhausting!
At 18 months, Ethan braved major surgery to have the now shrunken lump (the lump had shrunk significantly due to chemotherapy) completely removed. He now sports a scar about 15cm long on his right thigh where the cut was made to remove the lump. He further conquered 20 days of radiation under general anesthetic to the affected area to be sure all the cancer cells are destroyed. After this, there were maintenance chemo sessions of alternating 5 and 2 days in hospital every 3 weeks. He had fought hard during this time to keep his strength up, and was an inspiration to me to keep going. At times it was very hard on us all, but Ethan’s smile and infectious laughter through it all really made the difference.
We have just completed our 51 week treatment plan, and thank God for carrying Ethan through his fight. Our fight continues with check-ups and later a surgery to remove his port.
This is a very short account of a story that brings tears to my eyes whenever I think of my brave son. His undeniable strength and resilience has given me a brand new lease on life and taught us so many beautiful lessons. He is truly a Little Fighter to be reckoned with!