Saturday, January 01, 2005

Thursday, December 30th, 04…The sentence that changes lives

Thursday morning Tiffany took her in to see Dr. Samuelson, I tried to rest and fight off my cold at home with Anna. Dr. Samuelson had her go over to the hospital to get some blood tests on Abigail, and he gave Abby a antibiotic shot just encase it was meningitis. She also got a chest X-ray while she was there and then Tiffany came home. We were all shot so we put the kids to bed for a nap, turned the phone off and took a nap. Dr. Samuelson called and left a message, we called back after our nap to see what was going on.

Dr. Samuelson, told us to check her into the hospital so that they could do some more test and that he would meet us at the main entrance to help us get admitted. We hastily jumped in the van, grabbed Anna and Abby up from their naps and dropped off Anna at the Majeski’s house, and then off to the hospital. We waited for an hour till Dr. Samuelson came in and took us back to a little meeting room.

In this little exam room at Poudre Valley hospital is where he told us the news. “The blood test came back and show her white blood cells to be extremely high” he told us, “77,000 where they are normally around 8,000.” We just stood there holding our poor sweaty child trying to sort out what this would mean. “That high of a white count is a usually a sign of leukemia.” “You know what leukemia is don’t you?” Tiffany nodded yes and I a meek no…From there it gets pretty blurry pretty fast. All I knew was that we needed to do exactly what he was telling us to do and make haste in doing so. He gave us directions to the Denver hospital and the name of the doctor that he had already called that treats child cancer. He gave us his number, he filled us in with a few more thoughts, I think I asked him some logistical questions as to how much we should take with us from home or if we should just leave straight there. And then in the midst of this franticly overwhelming moment, he asked us to pray with him before we left. Scott, if you are reading this…”thank you!” Thank you for seeing the signs thank you for you incredible bedside manner, the directions to the hospital, light of Jesus that you brought to the darkness of the situation, thank you for so much more. “Thank you for saving our daughter and giving her the chance to fight this battle out.” You are a wonderful and Godly man, and an exceptional doctor; you are a man that got to shine God’s face upon us and direct us to Him in a time of extreme confusion. You were and incredible leader for us in our time of need; I can’t say it enough but “thank you again”.

Off to our house we went, holding it together only because we had to, we had to make this happen. I had to get my child do Denver. We stopped at the Majeski’s to ask the to take care of Anna for a couple days, we ran to the house grabbed my already packed backpack from our recent Christmas trip a few other things that we could think of and off to Pres. St. Luke’s we went. Called my folks, called Tiffany’s, calls that the will never forget, and told them that our daughter, happy and healthy as she seemed a few days ago, would now be engaging in a battle with cancer even though she is not even 3 years old.

The Abby Update - A Vision of Healing!

abby at disneyland
Originally uploaded by rdugall.

Welcome to the Abby Update! We have a vision of healing and community through this blog. First of all, we know that you have visited this blog because you want information on how Abby Schreiber is feeling as she continues the battle with childhood leukemia. If you are here to discover how you can pray specifically, praise God! We are encouraged by your desire to seek the Lord specifically in prayer for Abby's healing and strength. If you are here for updates on how Abby is feeling and what the doctors are saying about Abby's condition, praise God as well! Information that we share with you we share because we are "one in the Lord". As of the first of January, people around the globe, from all across America to Europe and other places around the world, are praying for Abby and our family. We have a vision of a great community of friends, family, brothers and sisters in Jesus and many others joining heart to heart for a common cause! Bookmark this blog and visit often. Mark and Tiffany, Robin and Vicky, Pam and Karl and the other members of our family will be blogging here regularly. We believe the truth of God...we trust in the power of the Spirit...we acknowledge the deep yearnings and cries of the heart that comes at times like this...we confess our need for strength, comfort and hope...we love the fact that we can pour out our fear, concern and questions before the King of the Universe who not only hears, responds but carries each tear.

Here is the most recent update: Abby was diagnosed with child leukemia on January 1, 2005. She received a bone marrow test, spinal fluid test, extensive blood tests, x-rays and other tests that rendered the diagnosis conclusive. She is beginning a two year journey fighting a leukemia that is 90% curable...she has the ALL type (according to the medical statistics). She is going to begin to receive chemotherapy on will be adminstered with medication that will counteract the nausea and other negative side effects as best as possible. She will be given the chemotherapy over the next couple of weeks with the hope of forcing the cancer into remission within 28 days. She will receive more extensive chemotherapy in May or June of this year. Over the next months she will lose her hair, experience some "bloating" because of the use of steroids, and also have to be "sheltered" for other people because of the susceptability to infection. She is beginning the journey surrounded by prayer, spiritual confidence and an amazing amount of love. You can email Mark and Tiffany at or or You can also email Robin Dugall, Abby's papa at Otherwise, keep posted through this blog. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for you passion and compassion for Abby! Let's be bound together in prayer for healing and new life!