Lyra is a confident three year old who spreads joy wherever she goes! She loves to sing, dance, draw, snuggle while reading stories and is rarely seen in anything but a princess dress. If you happen to pass Lyra at the store, she will most certainly ask you your name and probably tell you all about her favorite my little pony or what she ate for breakfast.
At two years old, Lyra and her Mom, Megan, walked into their pediatrician’s office thinking she had an ear infection, and hours later were admitted to Doernbecher Children’s Hospital awaiting a blood transfusion and a cancer diagnosis. The next day, Lyra was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), and she would receive her first chemotherapy treatment that evening. Even in the darkest first days surrounding her diagnosis, Lyra spread her light throughout the hospital walls, quickly becoming a favorite among the nurses and made friends with the other patients.
No one thinks cancer is going to happen to them, certainly not to their child. One day we were totally normal, and the next day, we weren’t. From a mom’s perspective, it was shocking. Even in the ER I was in disbelief, but when treatment started, and my hope slowly started to come back. You have no option but to go through it. You can’t stop. You say to yourself, I hate this but I have to go through it.
Lyra is so remarkable she will finish chemotherapy treatment in January 2018, 27 months after her diagnosis. She has benefited from the research that came before and has a treatment plan that is known to be effective for her specific cancer diagnosis. But treatment has not been easy, long term side effects from chemotherapy and steroids are very common and a cure is not guaranteed. Lyra has been asked to be much braver than a child should have to be, and for almost a year she missed out on a lot of little things that we take for granted. As Lyra’s parents, we are very hopeful she will have a long, healthy future, one in which she can continue to spread her light, love and happiness.