(Editor’s note: Danielle Lowe is a Citizen Potawatomi Nation member of the Navarre Family. She is the oldest granddaughter of Robert Joseph Navarre Jr. and Rita Navarre of Harrah, Oklahoma. Because Danielle is of Native descent, the odds of her finding a match are greater among Potawatomi people. The Navarre Family thanks you for the prayers and support for our sister during these difficult times. This is her first-person account of her battle with leukemia.)
Hello, my name is Danielle Lowe. Currently I’m in a battle for my life against a very aggressive form of Leukemia called Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML). My diagnosis came as I was getting my four-month post-partum checkup after the birth of our son Thomas in December 2010. My husband Mark and I were crushed as we were looking forward to our first Christmas as a new family. Instead, I was immediately placed in the hospital to begin the necessary chemo treatment to fight this leukemia.
The only known cure for AML is a bone marrow transplant. I was released in March, and was able to visit with my transplant specialist in San Antonio. At that time my bloodwork was coming back showing I was in remission, and the urgency for the bone marrow transplant was very low. I was able to take on monthly chemo treatments, return to work part time at CPHS, and have fun play times with Thomas, who is almost nine months old. Then, on May 9, I learned that I was no longer in remission, and the urgency of the transplant became very immediate.
As we undergo another round of aggressive chemo, we are searching for a bone marrow match. The new marrow will replace my current marrow, allowing my body to produce only healthy cells. This is a lengthy three-month process.
During this treatment, I will have very limited access to my family. As a new mother this has been especially hard on me; I will miss many of Thomas’ first milestones. Financially, it will be hard on my family as I will not be able to work. Because of this, my family has pulled together to hold a benefit dinner and silent auction to help us pay for the cost of the transplant, once a matching donor is found, and all the expenses that come along with it.
Many have asked what they can do to help, to them I say the following:
I would like to you thank you for your support, if you do feel inclined to donate. Despite the economic hardship facing us all, I am in awe of the generous support and outpouring of love from all in our community. What a blessing it is to be loved by so many. I hope and pray that, once I am healed from AML, I am able to return that love and generosity to others who may find themselves in a similar pair of shoes.
I know that God will provide, and I have felt him so close to me during this time. He is “My strong tower, my Fortress when I am weak.’’ Please feel free to watch our journey on Facebook: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Danielle (Navarre) Lowe