As most of you know, our son Caleb was in a car accident in September, 2011.
As he had blown apart his knee he was taken by ambulance to Kamloops for surgery.
After having a full body CT scan we were soon told that his knee, in three pieces, was the very least of our concerns.
We were shocked to find out that Caleb had a very large brain tumor that needed to be removed right away.
When we saw the CT scan it certainly explained all the headaches Caleb had been having.
Within four days Caleb underwent two huge surgeries, one for his knee and one for his brain.
It was the longest nine hours of our lives.
When Caleb woke up with a pounding headache and a cheeky attitude, Chad and I were relieved.
It seemed the same son that went into surgery had come out, minus the tumor and a substantial part of his brain.
Caleb scored 90 per cent on his post-surgery brain tests and the tumor appeared to be benign.
We had weathered the storm and we were going to be okay.
Caleb had a long road to recovery with physiotherapy but he was going to be okay.
The pathology report was taking a while but we believed staying positive – “no news is good news.”
Twenty five days later we received another blow.
Caleb’s tumor was a very rare aggressive cancer called clear-cell ependymoma.
Soon after this devastating news the treatment schedule and plan was made.
At this point our families, friends, co-workers, acquaintances, associations and wonderful people of Williams Lake pitched in financially, physically and emotionally.
We want to thank you all and let you know you all had a part in keeping our family unit intact.
We could not have done it without you all.
We watched our son go through radiation, lose his hair and struggle to regain his strength and mobility without one complaint or pity party.
Caleb showed so much courage and bravery our hearts were full to the top with pride and love.
The radiation technicians called him “a ray of sunshine in their day.”
We were also very proud of our daughter Kylie who had to cope with some hard times in what should have been the time of her life, Grade 12.
She has shown us what a strong and capable young lady she is. We love her with our whole hearts.
We recently finished our first follow-up MRI appointment, post radiation and things look pretty good. The cancer seems to be in remission.
They will be closely monitoring Caleb by MRI every four months.
There will always be uncertainty and fear but that is all part of life.
Caleb will be starting Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops in September.
We want to thank each and every one of you who helped us on our journey.
We really appreciate each and every one of you.
We have learned that it is okay to accept help even though it is hard.
Life is simple, enjoy and do the things that make you happy.
Laugh often. Make memories.
Chad and Malinda Gill