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Thursday, December 28, 2006

Christmas 2006

Dear Family and Friends,
If this letter gets written it is because I was very efficient at my one 45 minute work session at the computer!! This year has been a very eventful one for us, much more than we planned!

Cale is now 2 ½ and is such a delight and joy and a bit of a pill at times too!! He is such a creative little boy and has all kinds of ideas…some good and some not so good. Some of his good ideas are playing forever with his dump truck, reading books, playing trains, and giving hugs. Some of his not so good ideas are riding his tricycle (with no pants on) as fast as he can down the hill, running into the curb and flying over the handlebars on the grass (all on purpose), or pretending our dinner plates are snowshoes, or taking the powdered sugar outside and having a powdered sugar war with his brother (I should probably just be grateful it was outside and not inside!). Cale certainly keeps us on our toes and makes us laugh way more than we probably should—we at least try to turn our heads so he doesn’t see that we are laughing!!

Tate is 4 ½ and is such a sweet boy. I could sum up his year by a quote he made last January when he was trying to find his stuffed animals… “Mom, where are my babies…I mean my big boys…my people.” So his year has gone. He is growing up so fast. He started preschool and is just in heaven. He delights in everything and it is amazing to see his mind grow and expand. I thought he might outgrow the “why” stage, but instead of asking just plain old “why” to everything, I now hear, “I wonder why such and such happens.” He is very curious, is Mr. Holiday cheer himself, and is the best big brother.
My big news is that we are expecting another baby in February. I got really nervous at our ultrasound because we decided we didn’t want to know the sex of the baby and I was very concerned that they would slip and tell us. We are on schedule for a surprise in the middle of February.

Jon started the year doing all of his normal stuff and being concerned about the typical things you would expect from someone who would be graduating soon. His birthday was in October and he kept telling me that 31 was a rotten age because he felt like he was more out of shape than he had ever been and he just plain wasn’t feeling like his normal self. On November 1st we found out why he was feeling so out of shape. Jon was admitted to the hospital and diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome which is a type of blood cancer. We have really had a whirl-wind experience so far. Right after his diagnosis we learned that the cure for his disease is a bone marrow transplant. All his sisters, AKA “team donor,” were tested and to our absolute joy we found out that Jon’s oldest sister Jadi is a perfect match. She will come out Christmas day and begin a procedure to collect her stem cells for Jon. Jon then starts chemotherapy January 9th and his transplant is the 16th. We anticipate a successful transplant and hope that Jon will be able to come home sometime around February 5-9th. Please keep Jon in your prayers as this process is a very difficult and long one. The baby is due February 17th and I’ve been early in the past, so life will definitely be an adventure.

So to sum it all up, this year has for sure had its trials, but we have experienced many more miracles than trials. I’ll just list a few…Jadi being a match, some of the best medical care, the UNC orthodontic department that has been so kind and good to Jon, wonderful friends, the best families anyone could dream of, 2 sweet boys and a baby on the way, Jon’s mom staying with us for the “long haul,” the faith and prayers of so many that have given us comfort and peace, and a greater strength and faith in the Savior Jesus Christ that can only come from life’s most difficult challenges. The list goes on and on. We have felt so blessed at this time.
We hope you all have a wonderful, healthy, and happy New Year! We plan on doing the same!

Lots of love—Jon, Quinn, Tate the Great, Captain Cale and the Mighty Surprise Silcox!!

P.S. If we don’t have your email address, please send it to us as we send out periodic updates… or Jon will have his computer with him while he’s in the hospital and would love to hear from you. Also, if you are interested in becoming a bone marrow donor, please visit . It only requires a few cheek cells to be added to the registry!

Friday, December 8, 2006

Another update (December 8, 2006)

Hello family and friends,

It seems like much has happened since our last email. The weekend of Thanksgiving we made a quick trip to Utah. Both our families knew that I was coming but Quinn and the boys were a complete surprise. I think they liked their surprise! Perhaps the best part of our trip was on our lay-over in Chicago, as we were about to miss our connecting flight, we found out that Jadi, my oldest sister, is a complete bone marrow match!!! Thrilled, happy, elated and grateful don't even begin to describe our feelings! With this good news we will now move quickly toward the transplant. Since the transplant will actually be a bone marrow stem cell transplant, Jadi will come out to North Carolina on Christmas day and the next day begin testing before they can harvest her stem cells. She will undergo about 3 days of treatment to move the stem cells into the peripheral blood, and then it will take 2 days to collect enough stem cells via a centrifuge process for the transplant. So, no extraction of actual bone marrow! I will begin chemotherapy treatment the first week of January as an out patient, and will be admitted to the hospital around the 8th of January for the remaining week of high-dose chemotherapy. After 2 days of rest from the chemotherapy, I will then receive the stem cell transplant. The doctors seem to think that I will be required to be in the hospital for about 30 days following the transplant. As you can imagine, I am not looking forward to being incarcerated for that month, but I have become rather submissive to whatever doctors tell me to do! I am also told that even after being released from the hospital, I will continue to recover at home and possibly not feel too well for some time. I guess that is to be expected when you have cancer, right?

It is possibly a demented thought to be looking forward to something like chemotherapy, but I think we are all anxious to get the whole process started. We will try to keep you posted as we progress through this experience.

Before this, we had never experienced having so many people pray and fast specifically for us. It has been amazing. We really feel that Jadi being a match is a true answer to prayer. Thank you all for your support, love and prayers. We have, in a very real way, felt the sustaining strength beyond our own and it has instilled within us faith, courage, vitality, patience, and energy during this time. We can’t thank you enough for your support.

May you all have a wonderful holiday season. We feel we have much to celebrate and much to reverence.

Thank you again,

Jon and the clan


Many people have generously offered to help even by means of being tested as a bone morrow match. We have been blessed to find a match within my family, but thousands of others aren’t quite so fortunate. If you would like more information on how to join the National Marrow Donor Registry, the website is below. It costs $50 to register, but only involves a swab of the cheek from inside the mouth to get the required information (no blood draw needed). As you can imagine, this is something we feel quite passionate about now!