Grant is a driven, hardworking, quiet young man who takes life as it comes. Despite his life-changing illness, he has remained positive through very hard times.
In November 2017, Grant had just finished up football season as a 6th grader and returned from a demanding elk hunting trip in the Colorado mountains with his dad. He was unusually tired for an 11-year-old boy, and he was getting sick repeatedly. “We knew something wasn’t quite right,” said Grant’s mom Jess. The cause for Grant’s sickness, however, would come as a complete shock.
Grant was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Treatment began with intense, weekly chemotherapy sessions, including several inpatient stays at Blank Children’s Hospital. This intense, initial treatment period lasted an excruciating eight months. Once through those initial treatments, Grant moved into maintenance treatments. He takes a daily chemo pill and a weekly chemo pill. He goes to the clinic once a month for IV chemo, a spinal tap with chemo, and a week of steroids.
Despite all of that, Grant usually feels pretty good, with a few days a month being rougher than most. He is slowly getting back to normal, but he is still working on regaining strength and weight that was lost during this grueling previous year. Because minor illnesses affect him more than other kids, his family tries to keep him as healthy as possible.
Like any other 12-year-old, Grant loves to ride his dirt bike, play football and basketball, hunt, hike, fish, and hang out with friends and family. Although they like to stay active, their family isn’t able to plan much ahead of time because they are never sure how Grant will be feeling on any given day. They try not to get too far away from his clinic and doctors, so vacations and road trips are on hold for now.
“Grant’s illness has been hard on our family,” said Jess. “We've missed out on a lot due to Grant's treatment.” But their family chooses not to focus on what they’ve lost. They’ve seen the beauty of a community coming together to support their family. And they lean on their faith in God.
“We are thankful for a good prognosis at this time,” said Jess, “and we are continually reminded that God promises enough grace and strength for each day. We try not to worry about tomorrow or the future, but instead be thankful for the day we are given and make the most of it. We know God has a plan, even if we don't understand it right now.”