September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Join us today, September 30, 2014 as CURE Childhood Cancer honors Blake Morgan. Join our fight as CURE’s Kids Conquer Cancer One Day at a Time! Donate to Blake’s fundraising page.
Around Christmas of 2011, while visiting his dad in Kansas, Blake found a knot on the back of his head. He called home and complained about the knot. We thought maybe he had bumped his head on something and just didn’t remember. He said it was small, maybe the size of a grape. None of us thought anything of it. When he returned home the first week in January, he said it had gotten a little bigger and still hurt. Still, we didn’t think much of it and we told him we’d watch it. On the last day of hunting season Blake went with his step-dad hunting and was telling him the sun light was bright. His step-dad told him to put on a hat. Blake let him know he couldn’t and that the knot had grown much bigger. His step dad immediately brought him home. They didn’t finish the hunt. That Monday we were in the doctor’s office. The pediatrician thought maybe a hematoma and scheduled us for an ultrasound three days later. The next morning Blake got up and was in a great amount of pain. He said it was the most pain he’d felt since he first found the knot. We called the doctor back and got him in for an MRI. The doctor told us not to leave – stay close until he got the results.
We got a call about an hour after the MRI to get back to the pediatrician’s office. Blake and I (mom) were worried, but not so much that we were to the upset point yet. Dr. Deal came in and told us that Blake had a tumor and that we were going to have to go to Savannah for treatment. Prelim results of the MRI were an eosinophilia granuloma. This was on January 24th. The next few days were like we were living in some other world. We didn’t know what to say, or even how to take it all in.
We saw the neurosurgeon the following Monday and by the following Friday Blake was in surgery. Everything seemed to be in slow motion for all of us, but happening so fast. Biopsy results from the tumor showed Langerhans Cell Histosytosis. This nasty thing was about the size of a golf ball, and had eaten almost a two inch hole in Blake’s head. Doctors struggled with treatment plans and follow ups. Blake went through radiation to the sight. We finished the treatments in April 2012 and we’ve had a few scares here and there, but thankfully nothing else has shown up. Blake goes for follow ups once a year which include having a PET scan and he is doing great!
One thing about Blake is that he’s very active, loves sports especially baseball and football. This stopped him from being about to enjoy life and be a “normal” kid for a full season of baseball and part of the next season for football. He couldn’t participate in the baseball practices but he would go out and sit and watch from the side. He couldn’t participate in football practice but he was out there encouraging his team mates, and building them up – snapping chin straps, making sure pads were in the right place You name it, Blake was doing it. The second game into the season, Blake was released from the Doctor and allowed to return to football. We got to the game at about the half, Blake walked into the dressing room, trying to hold his composure and excitement back as he handed the coach the release…but he couldn’t!! He was so excited. Blake was 13 when all of this took place. He’s now 16, a sophomore and going strong!! Through all of this we met many people – adults, kids and doctors. Blake’s favorite, Doctor Duttonhaver, encouraged Blake and kept his spirits up during this time. This has lead Blake to future plans of becoming a radiologist/oncologist. He would love to see a cure found for all types of cancers, even these that are in question.
This October 3rd the High School that Blake attends – Claxton High – will host it’s first “Gold Out” night in honor of all the children affected by cancer. They will honor those that have “won” their battle and those who have gained angel wings. Blake refuses to say any child lost their battle – they’ve all won. We will also be raising awareness and money for CURE. He also shaves his head every year during the entire month of September as his way of making people aware. He has a horseshoe scar on the back of his head and when people are curious and ask what happened, he always makes a joke about it and then he tells them the real story. From what we’ve been told, this type of cancer is only treatable, not curable. Blake would love to see all cancers CUREABLE!!