Joe's Dad
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Day 21. A moment of joy.

Joe's Dad
Posted by
24 Oct 2014

My four year old son Joe has Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL), and these posts track the course of his treatment, and life around it. I blog regularly at

Over the past week, the daily doses of steroids have started to take their toll. Joe is finding that it takes more effort to move around, particularly walking upstairs, and at times he is almost unable to do anything until he has a clear plan for what he is going to eat next. His physical appearance has also started to change, as the consultants had warned us it would – his bodyweight has gone up by 15% just in the past two weeks.

We can just hope that the steroids are also having an impact on the leukaemia cells – we should find out later today when the results are back from his latest round of blood tests. As Joe’s energy levels have sapped, we are having to work harder to keep him occupied. He has now watched his way through much of the back catalogue of Star Wars, Lego and Lord of the Rings videos that we have borrowed from friends, and he seems less inclined, or less able, to engage in any sort of physical games, whether inside or out.

He does still perk up remarkably when he has company of his own age – and Joe has now had several successful playdates. Yesterday, we plucked up the courage to take Joe into school at home time, to collect his sister. This was Joe’s first outing in a pushchair since he was a toddler, but he managed to fit comfortably enough. We arrived in time to meet Joe’s class as they filed out of the Reception class. By this stage, Joe didn’t think that he wanted to meet anyone, but we persevered, and when Joe caught the eye of his class teacher, his face was transformed into a beaming smile.

A little moment of joy.



Such a touching story - I really hope the results today bring you good news.



Thank you - yes, the blood test shows that Joe is still making progress; the real test of progress will come in a couple of weeks, at the end of the induction phase.


Thanks for the update on Joe.

Treatment can be very tough at times and the steroids sound like they're certainly having an effect. We've got everything crossed that they have an impact on his leukaemia cells and that the results were positive when you picked them up last week. 

Finding things to keep his mind off things sounds like it's getting tougher, too, and I've been trying to rack my brains on what we can do to help out. We were thinking of putting together a video message to send to him. What sort of things does he like?

If there's anything else we can do please don't hesitate to get in touch.