Header image

Author Archives: the Allens

Hey all,

Thanks everyone who has responded quickly to the previous update. I wanted to put some additional details out there for some hands-on help this week if you are local and your schedule allows.

The carpet cleaning has been scheduled for Wednesday from 2-6pm. David will be moving some of the lighter furniture out of the carpeted areas this evening and tomorrow evening and may be able to use the help of 1-2 guys to get the job done a little quicker on one or both of those nights. The technician will be on the job Wednesday afternoon, and David will be there from 2-5pm to help move some of the larger furniture that is too heavy to remove from rooms, but will need to be shifted around for the cleaner. If there are 1-2 guys that can be available to help at that time also, that would be extremely helpful. If you can help, please give David a call. (425)516-8780

Kristin is leading the other cleaning efforts this week, and we’ve supplied her with names from those who have filled out the help sign-up form, so if you’ve signed up any time in the past year, you may be hearing from her by email or phone as she gets a team together. As soon as I have the details from Kristin on the date/time for a cleaning party I’ll post that here. Feel free to contact her directly if you’re interested in helping this week. (425) 605-0970

***Edit: The cleaning party is happening on Tuesday, March 13th at 7pm at the Schaub’s home. If you’d like to help, you are welcome to show up at that time, or contact Kristin (above) for details/address info etc.

If you’re just getting up to speed, check out yesterday’s post here.

Emily

Hi Everyone,

It’s been a long time since I’ve made an update on behalf of the Schaub Family, but I’m hoping to get everyone up to speed on what is going on right now, what their current needs are, and hopefully we as a community can come around them once again to help them in some very practical ways.

Most of you know that Jacob has been in treatment throughout this past year, with a few ups and downs, but mostly successes in his fight against cancer. So many people have offered encouragement and support to the entire Schaub family, and I know it is their hearts to express gratitude to every one of you who have helped in small and large ways. They are still moving forward because of the selfless people around them doing what they can to ease the burden and strengthen them through this truly difficult experience.

David and Sofia are remarkable parents, and most of the time no one can see the magnitude of their struggle to manage logistics, emotions, needs, and finances in the midst of all that is going on with all of the boys, with Jacob, work, and home. With the turn of 2012, they both hoped they’d see an end to this past challenging year, and see Jacob off into a new season of continued recovery from this journey. We all believe this is still coming, but these past few weeks and months have been extra-challenging in ways no one could have foreseen, which is why I’m writing this update to all of you now.

If I can speak as a friend, I think the situation is so multi-dimensional, and so unexpected, neither David nor Sofia have known how to ask for the kind of help they need right now, which is why I’ve been on a mission to take stock of everything with a clear mind and put all their needs out there so those who feel led to help can do so. Regardless of the brave faces they put on, the Schaubs really need us to gather around them and help hold them together through these coming weeks. Please consider the list below and see if there is a way you can help:

- Jacob is currently admitted to the hospital for an infection in his lungs and his immune system is more compromised than ever. Before he returns home, we need to arrange for their home to be cleaned (carpets and surfaces throughout) much like it was when he was first diagnosed. We’re arranging for a professional carpet cleaning company to do the floors, and will also need a work-party of volunteers who can help move furniture for the cleaners, as well as people who can thoroughly clean surfaces throughout their house. No date has been set for this yet, and there isn’t yet a team leader for this specific cleaning, so if you think you can help in this way, please let us know. Contributions toward the cost of the carpet cleaning, and cleaning supplies can be made through Band of Brothers NW on the right side of this website. ***If you happen to know of an environmentally-friendly carpet cleaner who might take on this task for cost, please send us leads!

-David has been home from work for the past month for personal reasons and to help with this turn of events regarding Jacob’s health, and they have a number of outstanding bills due this month that they don’t have immediate funds for because of some of the unexpected things that have happened. If you feel led to contribute in any way to these needs, you can do so by donating to them through Band of Brothers NW on the right side of this page, and please remember that many companies (like Microsoft) will match charitable donations if you register your donations through them. If you’re not sure, ask your employer if they have a match program. Every little bit helps.

- David is actively looking to sell their boat, and may need some help doing so. If anyone has a connection to someone who can help determine the boat’s current value and/or has connections to help him sell it, any leads would be much appreciated.

- Lastly, David & Sofia would probably never say so, but I think they’re both in need of serious encouragement. If you’re a close friend, please reach out to them! They’re in a ‘tunnel’ of sorts, just trying to do their best to hold everything together, but both of them could use lots of hugs, laughs, small gestures & notes…A small amount of encouragement goes a long way, and of course, your prayers are always appreciated.

I think that’s all for now. Thanks for reading this long post, and thanks also for being part of bringing this family through the toughest time of their lives. You cannot know how important your role is to them!

With love,

Emily (family friend)

 

 

Hi all! Wanted to drop in a quick note on behalf of the Schaubs to request that nearby friends consider bringing meals to them over the coming weeks and months. During the summer they had visitors and family in and out of their home, which was a big help with all the daily tasks, but now they will have a few months without extra hands. That’s where we come in! Please visit the meal website to sign up for a date to bring them a meal, or visit the help page for other ways to assist them. Thanks! Your support and encouragement means so much to them!  ~ Emily

Jacob is doing really well this week so far. He went in to the clinic today and his counts are getting better. He did not need a blood transfusion, and he seems happy. He says he has belly pain and nausea from time to time, so his appetite also comes and goes. He will begin another stretch of chemo on Friday.

Please pray:

For his belly pain to subside, and for him to continue eating well
For the whole family to stay healthy

Thanks everyone who attended the meeting we had yesterday for Sofia & family and also to all those who couldn’t make it but still want to help. I personally appreciate all the community support and desire to help the Schaub family get through this trying ordeal. It helps them so much, and eases my mind to know they have so many committed and wonderful friends!
At the meeting, we talked through the current and upcoming needs they have, and have identified team leaders for each area to ensure they have enough help at every turn. If you are interested in helping in one or more areas, head over to the Opportunities to Help page and contact the team leader of the area(s) you would like to help with. May and June will be especially critical with respect to having additional help, as they will not have any friends or family visiting from Europe during those months and Jacob has some milestones ahead in his treatment that may require overnight hospital stay.
Thanks in advance for your love and support. Sofia has told me several times that words just don’t do justice to how she feels about everything that has been done for them. At the meeting, we also decided that we’ll have another meeting in a few months to see how things are going with the teams and see if any adjustments need to be made, so when that comes around I’ll post it up.

Take care!  ~ Emily

Thanks for following along with Jacob’s journey! So many people have offered their support and help, and we want you to know, the Schaubs are SO grateful for your concern, words of encouragement, meals, financial help, etc. Having a supportive community truly helps them get through the tough days.

Now that Jacob’s treatment is in full-swing and the Schaubs have a pretty clear idea of what their needs are in the coming months, we are hosting a meeting for those of you who want to step in and be part of their ongoing support team. If you have a heart to be available for them in very practical ways, please try to make it to this meeting! We will be going over what their needs are and will be forming a few teams to help in those specific areas, so the burden is shared among many (and subsequently, not too taxing on any one person or family). During that time, we’ll be asking who might like to head up efforts in certain areas, so if you’d like to lead in some way, we need you to be there! If you’re not able to make it to the meeting, stay tuned on this website for how to get involved in supporting David & Sofia through the coming months.

  • The Volunteer Meeting will be at Molly’s home on Sunday, April 3rd at 3pm.
  • Molly’s address is: 8021 NE 122nd Pl., Kirkland, 98034
If you plan to attend, please RSVP to Molly – email her at brecknmol@comcast.net
If you have any questions about this meeting please contact Emily Allen: (206) 414-9628. Hope to see you there!

Jacob’s status:

Last week was very positive for everyone, as Jacob was between cycles and was feeling really good. He started the next round of chemo started yesterday. Yesterday was super busy, as they had several appointments throughout the day. Today was a little more relaxed, and Jacob had one long (5 hour) appointment for the largest of his infusion in this 5-day cycle. He will have three more days of shorter infusions lasting 1-2 hours each.

As of now, Jacob is still doing ok, but the doctors say it will catch up to him in about a week and that’s when he will start feeling really bad. They received the schedule for the next month and what will happen with Jacob’s treatment.

Sofia said Jacob’s magnesium level and blood pressure are a concern again.

Please pray:

  • For Jacob’s magnesium levels & blood pressure to normalize
  • For Sofia to stay focused on Jacob’s recovery and not let negative thoughts in
  • For Jacob’s hard days ahead, that his pain and discomfort would be minimized as much as possible.

Sorry it’s been a few days since the last update!

Jacob’s Status:
Last Friday, Jacob went to the doctor for a blood draw and spinal procedure to check out the status of the bone marrow and spinal fluid. Jacob’s doctor called today with the results and said the values are at zero which is what they want. It means there is no leukemia in his bloodstream, and they can proceed with treatment as planned. This is good news, because it means the treatment is working. Jacob’s blood pressure has been high, and it is still high, and the doctors want to find out why. They did an ultrasound of his kidneys today, and it showed that one kidney is back to a normal size, but the other one is still enlarged. It has improved a little since the last time they looked at it, but it’s taking longer, and is possibly responsible for Jacob’s high blood pressure, but they’re not sure. He will be seeing a kidney specialist this week, hopefully on Wednesday, to check it out a bit more.

Tomorrow Jacob has a dentist appointment and then a test administered by a brain doctor that will establish a baseline for his brain function before radiation treatments begin. This will help them determine/evaluate the effects the radiation has on him.

He will go in on Friday for blood work, and if all the numbers look good, they may start him on the next cycle of chemo as early as that day, which will usher in a really tough few weeks for them.

**They have also decided that they cannot have children over to visit Jacob until his immune system is more stable as they cannot risk him being exposed to any illness whatsoever. If you’re planning a visit to see them, please leave your children home, or check in with them before you come.**

Cleaning Team?
I will be going to the Schaub’s home on Saturday, March 12th from 1-4pm to clean, and if anyone would like to join me, I’d love to have a small team of people there so we can be thorough and quick. Sofia won’t know what Saturday will look like for them, since they’ll determine Friday if they start the next round of chemo, and if that happens they’ll be at the hospital for a few days. If they don’t begin the next round, they’ll be home. Whether they’re home or at the hospital, I think their home needs some scrubbin! Let me know if you would like to join me: Emily – (206) 414-9628.

Please Pray:

  • For Jacob’s blood pressure & kidneys – Sofia is really concerned
  • For Sofia to be able to stay focused on the good things that happen and not the bad things
  • For Jacob to be able to stay healthy while his immune system is down

Today:
Simon went to preschool this morning. David is still staying with a friend because he’s not well, but he’ll come home tomorrow to go to the hospital with Sofia, Lucas, and Jacob for Jacob’s appointments tomorrow. Sofia said today Jacob has been in a really super good mood. He woke up this morning and asked for Simon, so the boys piled into Jacob’s bed and played with the iPad together. Sofia took some cute photos of them together, and said she’d share them later. Before this week, Jacob didn’t want anyone to be close to him or touch him, so it was heartwarming for her to see them play together, and have a good time. Jacob has also started taking an interest in Lucas more, and makes comments about how he’s so cute, and that he loves Lucas. Sofia said he hasn’t held the baby yet, but he likes to touch him and look at his fingers.

This evening Jacob & Simon took a bath together and played in Jacob’s bed again. Sofia said they were laughing and playing, and great to see that. Jacob has also been moving a lot better (walking and almost running, not super fast, but he’s really starting to regain some of his strength and motion). He still struggles when he has to go up the stairs, but he doesn’t complain.

They have been building more on the LEGO Death Star, but they still have a lot left to do.Today, a woman who lives nearby knocked on the door, and brought Jacob two Costco hotdogs by surprise, and Jacob loved it.

Sofia also had a chance to see her friends Anna and Dashka, which was good for her, and they brought some really wonderful teas that Sofia is eager to try.

Tomorrow:
Jacob has a blood draw in the morning, and then a spinal procedure to check on his bone marrow. He can’t eat anything until after the procedure, which I think is somewhere around 11am.

Please Pray:

  • For continued good days
  • For the procedure tomorrow, and for the results from the procedure to be very good
  • For Jacob to do well with having to wait to eat until later in the day

Jacob has been in a really good mood today. Sofia said he has been building legos, and feeling really well.

David is staying at a friend’s house because he’s not feeling entirely well. The friends they have had staying with them from Sweden are also staying in a hotel tonight because they are also feeling not 100%, and no one wants to risk exposing Jacob to any illness.

Sofia said she received a large box today from the place she worked at when they lived in Copenhagen. She was really surprised and touched, as its been several years since she worked there, but they sent all kinds of wonderful things including beauty products (from the company she worked for), presents for the kids, swedish and danish candy, and even some danish beer for David. It really warmed their hearts.

Sofia also related a bit of a conversation she had with Jacob today. He told her that when he gets mad like he sometimes gets, its because he’s really really tired. She says he is really thinking about things and is trying to communicate how he feels, which comforts her.

Sofia’s friend Janna came by with a blanket and pair of socks someone made for the baby which was really sweet, and another family from Jacob’s school came by to visit Jacob & Simon which was nice also.

Please Pray:

  • For David’s health so he can return home
  • For everyone’s health to remain good
  • Sofia said she wanted to be sure to give thanks for all the good things, and for the answers to prayer