I started this year with prayers of thankgiving that our family is healthy and happy. My daughter just turned 10 in December and is 3 years NED from her Inflammatory Myofibroblastic tumor. She is doing great. On Jan 2, my sister-in-law calls and says she and my brother took their 4 year old daughter to the doctor because she wasn't getting better from a bout with the flu and the doctors discovered she had a tumor in her chest. By the next day she had a port in and they had diagnosed her with an intermediate risk neuroblastoma that has invaded her spinal column and has wrapped itself around her spinal cord. They want to use chemo to shrink it and then operate. This has been so quick and devastating and is giving me flashbacks from my daughter's diagnosis. Her tumor was at the base of her skull and had attached itself to her C-2 vertebrae. If it hadn't been removed it would have basically done what my niece's tumor has done. The neuroblastoma is way scarier since it could have metasticized and her treatment is very agressive. Fortunately for my daughter, surgery and follow up MRI's is all she had needed. But I still remember that day we heard the news that our 7 year old had cancer. I was in the hospital room with my brother and sis-in-law when they were told those same terrible words. How does this happen twice in our family? Childhood cancer is supposed to be rare. I asked my niece's oncologist if these could be connected in some way, but she said these are both random cancers and not genetic. Both of our families live in central Texas, but we are three hours away from each other. Could there be some sort of family trait that makes my family more susceptible to blast cell cancers? I feel like we've been struck by lightening twice now. Why couldn't we just win the powerball lottery instead?!