Thursday, July 17, 2008

Day 0: Caroline's Transplant

Today is it. The day that 10-year-old Caroline, who has been battling leukemia for three years this month, will receive the transplant of bone marrow. Her mom Carmen writes:

Just a quick update. Today is the big day. The cells have been harvested and are coming in from New York. They should arrive at LAX at 4pm and then they will come here to COH -- yes during rush hour! Once they arrive, they will go to the blood bank, they are checked there and then they send them up to us. I think they are hoping to get the process started around 6pm. Of course, it all depends on flight times and traffic.

I woke up this morning praying for the donor and that the process will go smoothly for him. I am still amazed by his generosity and willingness to do this for a little girl he doesn't even know. He must be an amazing individual. I pray that God grant him many graces for this wonderful gift that he is giving us.

Caroline is feeling great today and doesn't seem anxious about the process. Thank you to everyone for keeping her in your prayers. Every step is one step closer to her cure! Sending many blessings to everyone.

PS: We just heard the cells arrived here at COH about five minutes ago at around 4:15pm. I feel like we are waiting for the delivery of a baby.

This morning I looked out my bedroom window at the nearby locust trees, so deeply green with foliage, across the sandy-colored meadow to the grayish purple mountains, including Cuyamaca Peak, sprinkled with rocks at its craggy top. I prayed for Caroline, using St. Patrick's Breastplate prayer, adapted here especially for Caroline:

I bind unto Caroline today the strong Name of the Trinity,
by invocation of the same, the Three in One, and One in Three.
Of whom all nature hath creation, eternal Father, Spirit, Word:
praise to the Lord of our salvation; salvation is of Christ the Lord.

Christ be with Caroline, Christ within her, Christ behind her, Christ before her,
Christ beside her, Christ to win her, Christ to comfort and restore her.
Christ beneath her, Christ above her, Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love her, Christ in mouth of friend and stranger [donor].

I bind this day to Caroline forever, by power of faith, Christ's Incarnation,
his baptism in Jordan river,
his death on the cross for our salvation,
his bursting from the spiced tomb,
his ride upon the heavenly way,
his coming at the day of doom,
I bind unto Caroline today.

I bind unto Caroline the power of the great love of cherubim,
the sweet "Well done" in judgment hour,
the service of the seraphim,
confessors' faith, apostles' word,
the patriarch's prayers, the prophets' scrolls,
all good deeds done unto the Lord,
and purity of virgin souls.

I bind unto Caroline today the virtues of the starlit heaven,
the glorious sun's life-giving ray,
the whiteness of the moon at even,
the flashing of the lightning free,
the whirling of the wind's tempestuous shocks,
the stable earth, the deep salt sea,
around the old eternal rocks.

I bind unto Caroline today the power of God to hold and lead,
his eye to watch. his might to stay,
his ear to hearken to her need,
the wisdom of our God to teach,
his hand to guide, his shield to ward,
the Word of God to give Caroline speech,
his heavenly host to be her guard.

Almighty Father, Lord of heaven and earth, we ask for your healing hand to be upon Caroline this day, even this hour, as the fresh, healthy bone marrow is to flow into her body. May Caroline's body accept the marrow, and may she experience no complications and no rejection. We pray for your guiding hands on the doctors and nurses, granting them wisdom and discernment as they transfer the new marrow into Caroline's body. Bless, O Father, the donor in New York who so generously provided his marrow for Caroline's healing. Grant Carmen, Jeff, their family and their friends peace and joy this day, and from this hour forward, may the news of Caroline's health ONLY be good news. Hear my prayers, O Lord, and fulfill them completely through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.

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