I have the most wonderful news! Our pediatric oncologist called us this evening to share a most hopeful update. He started by saying that some of the test results have been very strange, not at all what he and the team had expected.
The initial biopsy results, from samples taken during the first surgery, had indicated Ependymoma. A nightmare of a diagnosis. We had been told that this was an incredibly stubborn tumour, extremely difficult to treat, and having a high rate of recurrence. The prognosis after failing to achieve a complete resection (removal of the tumour), was not good.
We were heartbroken at the bleak outlook, and yet never lost sight of hope. We know that we serve a mighty God. We believe that He is able to restore that which is broken, whether that be a grief-stricken heart, a shattered life, or in our case a very sick little boy.
We boldly asked people to pray for a miracle that would defy all medical understanding. Specifically, we asked for prayer that the tumour would simply not be there when Ethan has his MRI on Monday. We believed 100% that God was able to grant this miracle, and prayed in faith for Ethan’s healing.
Ethan’s doctor shared tonight, that the team feels Ethan’s initial diagnosis may have been wrong. The biopsy sample was very small, and had led the pathologist to believe that we were dealing with Ependymoma. The tumour itself, a much larger sample of tissue, has been under scrutiny by a team of pathologists since Ethan’s surgery two weeks ago. It now seems probable that we are not dealing with Ependymoma after all, but with a different type of cancer altogether.
This other cancer, Ganglioglioma, is a far less dangerous disease. While still a malignant tumour, it is much more responsive to treatment. There are proven drugs that can be used in fighting the disease. There is even the possibility that if enough of the tumour was removed, we might be able to safely enter a period of observation, without the need for any further treatment whatsoever.
A true miracle in the making.
To be clear. This news is probable, but not confirmed. The pathogists at McMaster are fairly certain that we are dealing with Ganglioglioma, but because there was an initial discrepancy, they are sending tissue samples to Sick Kids in Toronto for a third opinion. Our team will not take chances when the life of a child is at stake.
The doctor commented that this is all very strange. In response, I shared with him that we have thousands of people praying for Ethan, all over the world.
“I wondered if you did,” he said.
I do not know whether our doctor shares our faith, but I am sure of this… He has seen miracles throughout his career. Times when the outcomes defy medical understanding. He has told us as much.
We believe in miracles. 100%. We have experienced a miracle before, in the circumstances surrounding the birth of our baby girl. Tonight, we are trusting that this hope for healing, indeed for life itself, will be God’s truth for our precious boy. A miracle for today.
Please continue to intercede for Ethan. That the pathologists at Sick Kids will find that Ethan’s tumour is not Ependymoma, as initially feared. That all cancerous cells, of whatever kind, can be safely and effectively removed from his body. That he will live a long and healthy life. That Ethan will glorify God by sharing his story of healing and grace. That people will recognize and acknowledge the power of prayer. That lives would be changed for eternity.
Thank you for loving us, for your kindness to us, and for your prayers. Each of you has helped to carry us at a time when we have not been strong enough to stand on our own.
Much love and big hugs,