Wednesday, September 29, 2010

patiently waiting...and praying

So we had the bone marrow biopsy today. The test itself went well (or as well as they can go I guess). We probably won't get any results until Friday. So until then we just wait patiently and keep on praying like crazy for good news.
Thanks to all of you out there who offered a prayer or thought for Clint today. It's amazing what a difference it can make.
I'll try and post when we get the results. Prayer, Patience, Prayer, Patience, Prayer,.....
Love you all!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Need Prayers

We have a big day tomorrow and could really use some extra prayers!

Let me start by saying that we had a really great time away for our anniversary. On Wednesday we went to Midway. We golfed at Wasatch Mountain State Park, which was beautiful. We even saw a moose on the 9th hole! We stayed at the Zermatt (thanks Bryce & Allison) and then in the morning we headed to Wolf Creek (thanks LaDee) where we stayed Thursday night. We mostly just lounged around while we were there, we went for a few walks, it's really beautiful there. We had a really great dinner that night. It would've been a perfect couple days if only Clint wasn't having pretty high fevers the whole time:(
We were supposed to go get a blood draw at American Fork on Friday. But since Clint had still been having fevers and had a rash that was getting progressively worse we decided to just go to LDS for the blood draw. All his labs looked okay and Dr. Asch thought the rash looked a lot like a GVH rash (graft versus host). She told us to keep an eye on it and they'd check it again at clinic. Well we had our clinic visit today and everyone we saw said it definitely looked like a GVH rash. Which is good because if he has GVH there is a good chance that he will get GVL(graft versus leukemia) which is definitely what we want. So they took a skin biopsy today to see if that'll give us any extra info on the rash. His platelets have also been trending down the last week, which can be from GVH or can be from leukemia. So they gave him some platelets (and some potassium because it was low) and decided that tomorrow they will do a bone marrow biopsy to find out for sure what is going on in there.
So that is where the prayers come in. This bone marrow biopsy will either bring us really good news or really bad news. Also, Clint is pretty miserable with these fevers and this rash. So if we could get some extra prayers that this is GVH and that it will do it's job and then leave that'd be awesome :) Thank you so much for all the support! We couldn't do this without the amazing people around us. We love you!

I also want to give a BIG thank you to Clint's family and everyone who helped and came to the yard sale Saturday! You guys are the best! And a BIG thanks to Riker for doing the donor drive. I know I feel great knowing that I could possibly save a life! If you were not able to make it I will be posting the information on how you can sign up for the donor registry online really stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


We're Home!!! We finally just said we're out of here! The doctors weren't super excited about the idea, but since they knew they weren't really doing much for us there anyways, they didn't fight us too much. Clint is still having a fever here and there, but they haven't been able to find anything. So we're hoping that with all the antibiotics he's on one of them will do their job. He finished his last dose of vidaza today so maybe that will help the fevers go away too, who knows.

Well tomorrow (or today now because it's after midnight), Wednesday, is the big '10 year anniversary' (I think I misled people on a post earlier to believe it was on Tuesday, but thanks for all the sweet messages, I just figured we'd celebrate a little today too:)! So Clint and I are taking off for a couple days (thanks to some amazing friends and the best transplant coordinator in the world) so I probably won't post again for a bit.

Just a quick leukemia update...Clint's counts are looking pretty good. The vidaza brought them down a bit, he had to have a blood transfusion on Sunday, but they seem to be coming back up again. We were lucky that we started the vidaza when his counts were almost normal, I think that helped a lot.
Yesterday was a little rough for me. I think I just needed one of those mini breakdown days. I was just feeling like all of our doctors have given up on Clint and it was very frustrating. I've been spending a lot of time on the LLS(leukemia & lymphoma society) message boards the last few days, just trying to find out if there is anyone out there in a situation similar to Clints. I have come across a bunch of new information, drugs, treatment options, etc. So we have been talking a lot to our transplant coordinator, LaDee, to see what she's heard about some of them. She is going to set up a conference with one of the docs soon so we can go over all the questions I have and see what our options are. I know that our situation is bad. Really bad. But I am going to fight for all the time we can get! Don't get me wrong, I have a lot of faith in our doctors. I believe they are doing what they think is best for Clint. I just want to know there is a plan in place if the vidaza stops working. So hopefully we can meet with the docs and get some answers about what treatment options are available to us, should we need them.
I know it will take a miracle to cure Clint of AML. But I believe in miracles. I believe they happen everyday. I have seen them happen for us already. And I see no reason why we can't believe we will get some more miracles.

Anyways, I'd better get some sleep. But if we could get a few extra prayers for Clint's fevers to go away that would be amazing! Again, we are so blessed and so grateful for all the love and support we have around us. Thank you so much!!!

***Don't forget about the Be The Match Donor Drive this Saturday! Come join me in signing up to be a donor and possibly save a life! And stop by the Jepperson Family Yard Sale Friday & Saturday!

Monday, September 20, 2010

My Mom

I don't know what I would do without you mom! Hope you had a super duper birthday! You deserve it so much! Thanks for always being there for me. I could not have dreamed up a better mom. I love you more than you'll ever know!!!
I know you'll probably kill me for putting this picture on here, but I wanted everyone to know what the best mom in the world looks like! We love you!!!

Jepperson Family Yard Sale #2

Clint's family is having another yard sale!!!

This Friday September 24 from 10-8
& Saturday September 25 from 8-4
Location: 1855 W 1100 N
Pleasant Grove

They'll have tons of great stuff!
So come by and find something you never knew you needed :)
Feel free to spread the word.....Thanks!

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Riker, one of our nephews, is doing something amazing. For his Eagle Project he has decided to do a bone marrow drive. The donor drive is this Saturday September 25 from 3-5pm at the LDS Church building located at 1000 N 900 W in Orem. He is hoping to sign up at least 75 new donors during the drive that day.
Please, if you can, come support Riker, Clint, and all those waiting for a bone marrow or stem cell transplant by signing up to be a donor. If you have any questions about becoming a donor you can get more info by clicking here. Be The Match has asked the family to raise $1000 to help offset the amount it costs to register people, so if you would like to donate to Be The Match you can click here and donate through the friends4clint fund (just be sure to write Be The Match in the memo so we can be sure to get them the money).
If you have any questions please leave a comment or call one of the numbers on the flier below

A big thank you to Riker for doing this. And for all of you who support us everyday.
Please come sign up to Be The Match and you could Save A Life!!!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Back in the hospital :(

Well we are back up at LDS. We started the Vidaza on Wednesday as planned, then Thursday morning Clint woke up with a fever of 102.7. He walked the boys to school with me and when we got back it was down to 101.1. So we called up here and talked to Peter, the PA(physicians assistant), and he really wanted us to come up but we talked him into letting us just go over to American Fork Hospital to get blood cultures drawn and get some antibiotics, since we were supposed to go there to get our Vidaza treatment anyways. So we headed over to AF and were pretty much there most of the day.
The boys had a school carnival that night and Clint was pretty tired so we left him to rest while me and my mom took the boys to the carnival. When we got back around 8pm (with 10 bazillion balloon creations) Clint was shivering on the couch, so I made him take his temperature again. Well it was up to 104.2 which definitely meant we were heading up here to LDS Hospital.
We got up here about 9:30 and it took them a few hours to get his fever under control. It got up to 106.5, which was really scary. They still don't know what is causing the fevers, it could be the Vidaza or an infection, who knows. They started him on a few new antibiotics and so far none of his blood cultures have grown any infections, which is good, so we are thinking it is probably the Vidaza because it seems like he has always had fevers when receiving any kind of chemo. But only time will tell. He went a few hours this afternoon without a fever but it is starting to climb back up tonight :( Hopefully we can keep it from getting anywhere near as high as it got last night! The crazy thing is that this Vidaza is supposed to be a more mild chemo, with less severe side effects, but so far it has been a little rough for Clint.
I have told Clint and all the nurses that we better be out of the hospital by Tuesday because I do not want to spend our 10 year anniversary in the hospital (hopefully). But I guess we will just see what the next few days bring.

On a more positive note...we did have a really good week up until yesterday. Monday after our clinic visit Clint took me out to a romantic dinner. We ate at Log Haven, which is on old cabin up Millcreek Canyon. We ate outside in front of a beautiful, natural water feature. It was so nice to have a quiet, romantic dinner. Then on Tuesday Clint went golfing and played the best he has played in a while, and then that night we took the boys to see Despicable Me which was such a cute movie. And on Wednesday Clint and I were able to go to the temple and do some sealings, which was such a great reminder of how blessed we are to know that we can be together forever! We were able to witness sealings for people who died in the 1700's, so it was fun to think how exciting that was for them after waiting so long to have their work done. It also made me realize that I really need to get to the temple more often. But it was definitely an incredible few days!
I want to thank everyone for all your messages, well wishes, prayers, thought and love. It means so much to us that we have so much support! Love you all!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Clint's first post ever!!!

The past few months have been full of so many ups and downs, and ups and down, and crap and the unknown. How the heck are you suppose to know what to do and when to do it and if u can do it or should be doing it. So we got a bone marrow biopsy on Monday because they wanted to see if the Leukemia was still in the marrow. We got the results this morning, which they told us that there is about 4% of Leukemic cells or cells with those markers. So the plan is to start a treatment with a drug called Azacitidine or (Vidaza), which is a drug that becomes incorporated into DNA and changes the structure of the DNA to allow the genes that suppress growth of the leukemia cells to function. So now we have 7 days of this treatment which fortunately for us we should be able to do at American Fork Hospital. So the success rate is about 50% of this stuff having an effect on the leukemia, and each case is obviously different but people can have anywhere from months to around a year to possibly longer. So back to planning things and what and when and how to do, sure would be nice if we knew what was going to happen from day to day. We have our 10 year anniversary next week and would like to be able to do something for it but we will probably have to be around to see a doctor or something. Oh how crazy life is, but thanks for everyones love and support and understanding when we don't know what or when or why we are doing what we do. We hope to have many more good times with all of you. Life is still good and we are fighting for the best possible outcome from all of this crap, so thanks for all your hopes and prayers in our behalf.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Beautiful Temple Square

Things have been going really well since I last posted. We went to American Fork hospital for a blood draw on Friday and everything still looked good. His platelets were coming up on their own (52) but his hematocrit was right at his transfusion level (24) so he ended up getting some red blood that day. He had a white blood count of 800 and had 400 netrophils (so he was still a bit neutropenic). While we were getting our transfusion we were informed that LDS had called and said we didn't need to get another blood draw until our clinic visit on Tuesday! I wasn't quite sure how to feel about that. It was just weird after getting it drawn everyday to go for 3 full days without getting it drawn at all. So I was a little apprehensive about what his labs would show at clinic today....

But they were great! His platelets jumped all the way to 111. His hematocrit was holding at 26.7. His white cell count was 2900 and he had 1900 neutrophils!!! Dr. Asch was very happy with what she saw. So as you can imagine it was a very good (although long, as always) clinic visit! And we don't get another blood draw until Friday at AF. I think it's vacation time?!?

After clinic my mom was nice enough to drive the boys up to Salt Lake. We just hung out at temple square for a couple hours. We walked around the visitor centers and checked out the view from the Joseph Smith memorial building. We walked through the tabernacle and the conference center. It was really nice!
Here are the boys in front of the Christus statue
Nate & Clint
Nate in the JSMB
Clint again
And our forever family
It was a great day, followed up with some great food at Iggy's! Yummy Ribs! Thanks again Mom for bringing the boys up and for playing with us! We love you!!!

I also want to give a heart felt thank you to all of you out there who have ever donated blood. It is really an amazing thing you are doing for complete strangers. Every time Clint needs blood or platelets I think to myself "what would happen to him if these people weren't willing to donate?" It is a very scary and humbling thought. I am forever indebted to all who have donated. I love you!
I also want to let my Heavenly Father know how much I love him! I have been blessed beyond measure, and have been able to witness miracles firsthand. This experience has strengthened my testimony so much and has brought Clint and I closer than I even thought was possible. I am so grateful for eternal families. And for the knowledge I have of that incredible blessing. What an amazing thing it is to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints!
I am a lucky girl!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Another Good Day

Everything is still looking good today! Clint's platelets went up on their own for the 2nd day in a row. His hematocrit went down a little but not enough for a transfusion. His neutrophils are still at 100 so he is still neutropenic (has to be above 500 to not be). And his white cells came up to 500. He did have another fever this morning but it seemed to go away quickly, like usual. We think that his fevers might just be from his cells starting to come back since nothing has grown out of his blood cultures.
We did go golf 9 holes today! (Thanks Kevin!) It was so good for Clint to get out and do something. It still makes me pretty nervous to be outside with him neutropenic but he seemed really happy to be golfing. He felt pretty good, even afterwards (I thought he'd be exhausted)!
But I'm pretty sure the exhaustion has kicked in...Have I mentioned I LOVE this man!
Yes he might kill me tomorrow for posting this picture :)

Here are a couple pictures of Nik & Nate that I just wanted to post because I hadn't yet...
Here they are on their birthday. I still can't believe they are 7!!!
And here they are on the first day of 1st grade!
They were a little nervous and A LOT excited!
And here is one of Noah, just so he doesn't feel left out!

I'm so blessed to be able to be the mother of these 3 amazing boys! And to be married to their incredible dad! They are all so much fun and I love them so much! (I just need to try a little harder to remember this when we are doing homework:)

Here's to another great day tomorrow! Goodnight everyone!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I think today is a good day for a miracle

Well the past week had been going pretty good. We got Nik & Nate off to the first grade and they love it which is great! We'd just been plugging away trying to stay healthy. We had been going over to american fork hospital daily for blood draws, and so far things were looking fine. We went to a clinic visit up at LDS on Monday and Dr. Asch told us things looked good and we should get out and enjoy life a little. So here we were feeling pretty good about things.....
Until Tuesday morning. Clint woke up early with a fever of 102.7 (although he told me it was 101.9 and only admitted it was higher that night) but by the time we called the hospital to let them know a couple hours later it was already down to 100.3. They told us the doctors wanted to see us to draw some blood cultures and stuff. So we head up to LDS again. They do the normal blood draw, along with a bunch of other blood tests and we're sent to an infusion chair to wait. We're just thinking that maybe he needs some platelets or some red blood cells because he was feeling pretty tired that day. So while Clint is kind of in and out of sleep while we're waiting, I am checking online to see if our results are in (I can check on our insurance site, they post them as soon as they are available, which I've decided can be good or bad). Well the results come up and I start looking them over and I notice that both his platelets and hematocrit are both above his parameter for needing a transfusion. So I'm thinking great we won't have to be here too long. And then I see his blast count, which has been at 0 for a while now, which needs to stay at 0 (forever preferably), but it says 9...
I think I might have stopped breathing for a minute. Clint was sleeping, and I didn't want to tell him what I'd seen anyways. So I just sat there, for almost an hour, before the doctor finally came in. When he asked the nurse if there was a room available (because we were still in the infusion area) I knew we needed to brace ourselves for bad news. At this point I'm feeling really guilty for not telling Clint about the blasts, because I knew what was coming, although I'm not sure if that was better or worse. So Dr. Hoda tells us that there are blasts in Clints blood (yes I wanted to shake him and say, I know what do we do now, but I was really trying to be calm for Clint). He tells us that they are pretty sure they are leukemic blasts, although there is a very small chance that they could just be immature cells that show as blasts but will turn into healthy cells. He tells us they are sending them to the pathologist so they can look at them and see if they can tell for sure if they are leukemic or not, but that there was a chance they wouldn't be able to tell for sure without doing a bone marrow biopsy. At this point we start going over options of what to do from here (stay at the hospital to figure out his fever-which is completely gone by this point, maybe do another round of chemo, etc). Dr. Hoda said they would like us to stay at the hospital until the pathology reports came back, but this was at 11am and the reports wouldn't be back until 4 or 5pm at the earliest. So we told him we were going home. We did not see any point in sitting at the hospital doing nothing (other than another IV antibiotic that they ended up sending us home with anyways) when we could come home and spend time with the boys. Especially since we had no idea what tomorrow would bring.
So we left. We came home, played with the boys, had a nice night. And didn't hear anything from the hospital that night. Well this morning Clint woke up with the same crazy fever, but just like the day before it went down fairly fast. We decided to just go to american fork hospital for our blood draw. So we called up to LDS because we know that on Wednesday mornings they have tumor board (where all the docs meet to discuss all the transplant patients) and we let them know that the results of our blood work should be coming over soon so if they would discuss our case and let us know what the best next step would be that would be good. And then we wait...
Well about 11:30 we get a call from LaDee, our transplant coordinator, with amazing news. According to the pathologist the cells did not look leukemic, and there were no blasts in our blood draw today!!! LaDee was so happy on the phone, I wanted to reach through the phone and kiss her! It was the most amazing feeling I think I've ever had, I knew I had just witnessed a miracle! I just had a huge smile and wanted to dance around the house. We really wanted to do something to celebrate but couldn't think of anything that sounded fun and safe (we're still trying to keep Clint healthy ya know). So we just hung out with the boys, we took them over to the church to ride their bikes, and then we had a yummy dinner with my parents, and then went to Clints parents and had ice cream sundaes. It was a wonderful day!
This doesn't mean that we are out of the woods in anyway. And I'm sure we still have a long road ahead of us. But we are treasuring this day. This great news. And this miracle that we received today!
Today was most definitely a wonderful day full of miracles and love. I'm so grateful for all the prayers that are said in our behalf, I know that many of them were answered today! Love you!

**Sorry if this post doesn't make a whole lot of sense. It's really late, and I am in a weird state of mind, somewhere between complete exhaustion and witnessed a miracle today euphoria. So you'll just have to excuse the randomness:)