Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Happy 1 year Anniversary Parker!

I would like to begin by apologizing for the long delay in an entry. We have been so busy for the past few weeks and have literally had very little time to sit down and write a blog. I know that there are many people who are very faithful in reading about Parker and genuinely care and worry when they have not seen an entry in a while, so I apologize for that.
We just returned from Italy on Sunday night after a two week follow up visit for Parker. We had a wonderful time in Italy and it was so nice and comforting to see so many familiar faces again. Our travel to and from Italy was a little more eventful this year with delays and stolen luggage. However, we are now home safe and with a lot of encouraging news!
Parker is doing well clinically and is definitely responding positively to the gene therapy treatment. We are still waiting for a lot of his bone marrow results to come back, but his doctor in Italy remains very optimistic about Parker and the progress he has made to date. Although, Parker's numbers remain nowhere near normal, the function of his cells is excellent which is extremely important. This past year has been very difficult for us on many different levels and it was such a great feeling to hear some optimistic and encouraging news about Parker. Dr. Aiuti has reduced some of the restrictions we have been practicing with Parker which is wonderful news. For the first time, Parker has actually been given the green light to play with his cousins and friends as long as they are not sick with something that could potentially harm him. Therefore, we must still continue to protect Parker, but unlike before he is actually allowed to see other children as long as they are well. This is fantastic as Parker is at an age now where he needs to interact and socialize with children developmentally. With time, more conclusive results and further improvement, Parker will eventually be able to lead a very normal life which is all that we care about. We have time and as long as Parker will be o.k then we are prepared to do whatever it takes to ease his transition into living a normal and healthy life. May 18th marked Parker's one year anniversary of having gene therapy. It is crazy to think that one year has gone by. We are so thankful and blessed for all of Parker's doctors who dedicate their time and life to children who are severely immune compromised. They are such incredible people and we will be forever grateful for everything they have done for our son and us as parents of a sick child. Dr Aiuti is such a brilliant man and we could never thank him enough for essentially giving Parker a fighting chance at life. Sick kids is the most amazing hospital and we have so much respect and gratitude for Parker's doctors and nurses. We are so fortunate to have such an amazing facility close by lead by such an incredible medical team.
I would like to also thank everyone who has supported us to date through this journey. We are extremely lucky to have such an incredible support network and to be surrounded by so much love and positive energy. So many people have made such a difference in our life and we thank everyone who has helped us financially or emotionally for your support.
There are still some tickets left for the golf fundraiser being held on June 1. If you are still interested, but have not purchased tickets yet, please e-mail before it is too late. This is going to be an incredible day!
I am leaving you with some images from our trip. Please continue to keep Parker in your thoughts and prayers. While we were in Italy we met our friends from the United States and their son who will be having his treatment in the next couple of weeks. We had such a wonderful time with them and wish them all the best as they begin this next chapter of their journey. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers as well.
Happy Anniversary Parker. You are loved by so many people on so many different levels. You will never know just how much you have touched the lives of so many. God bless!