Flights of Compassion Required: 4
Travel Loyalty Points Required: 37,500
Points Raised: 37,500
Points to go: 0
Our daughter, Arya, was diagnosed with an aggressive brain cancer at 3 years old. She has been battling for more than two and a half years now. She is an oncology patient at the Alberta Children’s Hospital. Her particular cancer has no known standard-of-care chemo options, so at relapse, the only treatment options are experimental.
Accordingly, we have been pursuing clinical trials for our daughter, so that we may continue the fight and help contribute to ongoing research in trying to find a cure for aggressive cancers like Arya’s. We were just accepted onto another trial last week, and flew down to Pittsburgh on short notice to be here for an appointment on Monday morning. Arya’s grandparents traveled to Alberta to stay with her two brothers while we were away, and because they wanted to be with Arya for what may be her last Birthday and Christmas.
Unfortunately, the appointment that was supposed to be on Monday had to be cancelled due to tumour slides not arriving on time, so we lost our flight home on Tuesday (change fees were more than the cost of a new ticket, so the airline advised us to leave the tickets as ‘no show’). We are awaiting news of a new appointment and are hoping that blood counts and such work out for our daughter to have her trial treatment this afternoon – (fingers crossed!!). We will then need to book a new flight home. We also must return the week after Christmas for a second treatment and will then have an MRI to determine whether the treatment is helping to stabilize her tumours.
Arya and I are currently in Pittsburgh, along with her father and infant brother (‘dad’ had to be here for the consent process and signing, and because it is difficult to juggle an infant and 5 year old during labs and treatment). Arya’s brothers told us the house is very quiet without us there, and they miss us greatly, especially as they are waiting for us to get home to go and cut our Christmas tree, which we typically do on the first week of December each year. Arya’s 6th birthday is also just 9 days away, so we are anxious to get home to start organizing her party details!
We have been maintaining a GoFundMe account for treatment costs, but flights have been a significant portion of our expenses and we are a low-income family. Assistance with getting our family back together to celebrate Arya’s birthday and Christmas together would be an amazing gift! For more information about Arya’s cancer journey, please visit https://aryasjourney.wordpress.com.