September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Join us today, September 30, 2014 as CURE Childhood Cancer honors Miley Parker. Join our fight as CURE’s Kids Conquer Cancer One Day at a Time! Donate to Miley’s fundraising page.
Miley, our six-year-old daughter, is a cancer survivor. At just seven months old, Miley was diagnosed with retinoblastoma. The doctors found a less than three-millimeter tumor in her left retina. To kill a tumor that was about the size of a sharpened pencil lead, our infant daughter endured six months of chemotherapy and nine laser treatments to her retina; targeted at burning the tumor away. The laser caused not only the tumor to die, but also scarred the area around the tumor that resulted in her having a blind spot in her left eye. We are very thankful that today she has great vision with both eyes. She wears protective glasses to prevent an accidental eye injury and we have patched her right eye for a few hours every day, for nearly five years, to keep her brain exercising her weaker left eye.
We now know that Miley’s story is extremely unique. Her cancer was caught very early. Her doctors told us to, “expect, even plan on” more tumors. We refused to do that and truly, through God alone, she has never had another tumor develop.
Miley has been screened closely for the past five years because of the probability of another tumor developing or the original tumor recurring. In five years, Miley has had anesthesia 29 times for eye exams under anesthesia (EUA) to check for more tumors in her eyes and regrowth of the original tumor and has had 12 sedated MRI’s to check for tumors outside of her eyes and in her brain, which are associated with retinoblastoma. We praise God that another tumor never developed and are thankful for the close watch her doctors have kept over her.
Today Miley is healed and a healthy six-year-old 1st grader. She is wise beyond her years. Miley loves her family and friends fiercely and is the best big sister to her little two-year-old brother, Eli. She loves life and Jesus Christ. She is cancer free and has been since March 30, 2009. We praise God with all of our being for the blessing of healing he gave to our daughter. Jeremiah 17: 14: “Heal me, O Lord, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise.” We praise God for the gift of both of our children’s lives, for the gift of all life, and our family is forever changed with hearts of daily gratitude.
Miley had ONE three-millimeter tumor. Miley’s cancer was a “best case” scenario (if there is a thing with cancer). It was caught early, the treatment worked, and the cancer has not recurred; that is too often not the case with childhood cancer. Join us to raise funding for research for better treatments, less side effects, and for a cure. Thank you so much for all the support you have shown our family. Join us for a cure for all.