Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Mariah's Journey

If this blahg experience is going to be inclusive of all important and noteworthy events {in addition to the ramblings and not-so-noteworthy events} then I need to acknowledge the journey that Mariah is on. Fortunately for Mariah {and for the rest of us} she does not journey alone. However, we all may have to learn lessons we would have either preferred not to learn or preferred to learn on a smoother, more familiar road.

A Bit of History: Mariah has complained of being stiff and sore for a long time. Joe and Mandy did everything they felt directed to do and have taken her to plenty of doctors. Until just recently, the doctors were as baffled as they were. Finally they were sent to Primary Children's Hospital where they were able to get the hard answers they needed.

During that initial visit a couple of weeks ago, Mariah was diagnosed with Dermatomyositis, an autoimmune disease that has zoomed in on her muscles. The doctor explained it to Joe, Mandy and Mariah as well as outlined the course of therapy. To say they were overwhelmed would be an understatement. They have risen to the situation, though, and as a family are dedicated to completing this journey with Mariah.

Mariah has to have a weekly injection that's basically a diluted chemotherapy drug (methotrexate). Fortunately they can give it to her themselves at home. She has also been on a high dose of Prednisone since the day of diagnosis. She has been so brave and strong with all the accompanying side effects! What a testimony of how Heavenly Father blesses us with what we will need on our journey - especially when that journey takes unplanned jogs and turns!

Her checkup was today and the doctor {per Joe's report} was impressed with Mariah's improvements. It's still going to be a long road to reverse everything that her body has accepted as normal up to this point. But they can do it. Joe and Mandy have built a strong family and continue to do so. This will just be adding some supporting beams and joists that will hold it all together even more securely.

So, whether Mariah knows it or not, she's got a huge number of people on the journey with her. Because of the Prednisone, her space bubble has expanded a little bit and gotten a little more sensitive, so we'll try not to get too close! But we're there for you and with you as much as possible. Our prayers are there when we're not.

And, Mariah, hopefully you especially know how much I love you!


  1. Oh, my, our prayers will be with Mariah and her family. Life is full of challenges. Lots of Love.

  2. Thank you all for your prayers!!! Mariah has been a trooper and is determined to finish this course with a good attitude. The Dr. told us they are treating her with the same medical treatment they use with childhood luekimia (??spelling??) Her apperance has changed drastically now but she is as adorable now as she was before. She has finally adjusted to things that she has gone back to school and can make it through a full day. Go Mariah!