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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Well... it's not lymphoma

Some words can really stop a parent's heart... words like autism and cystic fibrosis and childhood cancer. Two months ago, I held a friend's hand while we waited to hear whether or not her six-year-old daughter, a close friend of my Tongginator, had lymphoma. It was an agonizing two days of testing, trying to hide our concerns from the little ones and to pray through our fears. We rejoiced together when she received the negative tests results.

And then we didn't celebrate.

Because "not lymphoma" meant something else... not something life-threatening, thank God, but definitely something serious. And it's not something people tend to think about or worry about. In fact, it's something people tend to brush aside as being "not too big of a deal" until they really sit down with the information and look at the big picture. As adoptive parents, we all need to be aware of this medical condition, especially if we adopted our children internationally. It could happen to any of our children. And it is happening right now to my daughter the Tongginator's six-year-old friend.
Now in kindergarten, she was adopted from China at sixteen months of age.

And she is showing signs of....

{click over to Grown In My Heart to learn what she was diagnosed with}


Wuxi Mommy said...

Wow...I had no idea that our internationally adopted children were at risk for this. I worked with a nurse whose bio daughter developed this condition around age 7, but have never known anyone else with it. Thank you so much for sharing this with us! Our Maia is also very tall for her age, although very thin.

Debby said...

Wow, I didn't know all of this. Interesting. Just some info for you....I started my periods at age 9 and my daughter at 10. My daughter just had her second baby at 37. At least you have this information. Amazing what the body does to compensate.

Super Mommy said...

Unfortunately I know of another little girl adopted from China who is also dealing with PP - she is the same age. Thanks for making us aware about this.

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

WOW.... It is not Lymphoma, but this is not something to take lightly. I did not realize that Internationally Adopted children were at great risk!!

I am sorry I have been so absent around these parts...... life is a little crazy at the moment and blogging has had to take a backseat:( But that doesn't mean that I have not thought about you and my other bloggy buds....... miss you all!!

Any plans to make a trip up North in the near future?

Hope you are well!!



Georgia Peach said...

First off, I'm so happy for this little girl (and her family) to hear that the diagnosis is not lymphoma. As I read the rest of this post about PP among adopted girls, I was simultaneously frustrated that these children have an additional hurdle to overcome and relieved that you are arming parents with this information. Particularly if there are steps (albiet unpleasant steps) to slow the process.

Much respect to this family who allowed you to share this story with your readers. This is a very important post.

M3 said...

Thank you (as always) for the spot-on information. I always find something helpful when I come here.

Janet said...

Whoa. I had no idea. I will keep an eye out. Whoa.

Gail said...

Thank you for this very informative post TM. I was aware of this, and have been keeping a close eye on Grace and her travel group sisters. I'm very happy that the Tonginnator's friend doesn't have lymphoma.

Kristi said...

This makes my heart skip a beat. My sweetie has grown almost 13 inches in three years and towers above her peers. I'm going to be printing this information out and watching carefully. Thanks for sharing!

Colleen said...

I have heard of this and I am so happy you wrote about it. I think this is something that not many people adopting know about. Because I am aware of it I do watch for signs. About 3 weeks ago I was giving Livi a bath and she raised her arm up quickly...and I thought I saw something dark...so I raised her arm up and realized it was dirt : 0 I was a bit freaked out...thank you for your article and for always being on top of your game!!! Your bring a lot to the table and you always make me think...I am still going over your post from the other day about getting off the bus and anxiety...in fact my husband brought it up this morning when talking about Livi.

Colin and Jill Canada said...

I've read about this once before, and it scares the life out of me.

It's really good information.
Prayers for the T's friend.


Michelle@BornInOurHearts said...

Thank you so much for this information!! We have some concerns about a certain member of our household and thanks to this article, I'm calling our Dr. tomorrow. I wasn't aware there was anything we could do to slow the process. Thank you, thank you!!

LucisMomma said...

Would it be ok with you to link the Grown in My Heart post on my blog?

As for the bus stop situation--have you asked the Tongginator about it? My DD woke up yesterday morning (too early!) and told me she "didn't want to dream anymore" so she cuddled with me. And this morning, she had another dream, remembered her dream and told me about it. I think your T's anxiety is abandonment related. Hugs to both you and her.

Briana's Mom said...

Wow - this is something I will definitely watch out for. Briana was a little under weight when she came home but nothing dramatic. I've definitely heard of early puberty in these girls, but I always wondered if there was anything that could be done about it. I'm so glad to know there is now.

Erica said...

This is frightening. I am an RN and have a degree in anthropology. In several of my bio-anthro classes this was discussed (not in relation to adoption though) and the causes. Among American born children they noticed it more among the daughters of single mothers and felt it may be related to lack of a male (and testosterone). In order to explain it better I would need to write a page, but I will say there are so many interesting theories to what causes it so I appreciate the information.