Help Baby Grace's Brain Cancer Battle

For: Grace Skuches
Township of Washington, NJ
Organizer: Jennifer Dondero Skuches
$31,663
of $35,000 goal.
Raised by 328 donors
90% Complete
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The Story

At 6 month old, our daughter Grace, was diagnosed with Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdiod Tumor (ATRT). An extremely rare, very difficult to treat pediatric brain tumor. The tumor has been fully resected and there are no other tumors present in her brain or on her spine. Her spinal fluid was negative for cancer cells. We are very hopefully of a positive outcome. Grace has already completed 5 rounds of chemotherapy, 1 stem cell harvest, and 3 stem cell rescues. In December, it was determined that Grace was No Evidence of Disease.  By the first week in January, Grace had facial paralysis that ultimately was determined to be caused by a recurrent tumor.  The cancer was back. She started Proton-Beam Therapy in January 13 and completed the treatment on February 24. She is currently receiving maintenance chemo. Grace has endured a many setbacks, like a subdural hematoma, shunt revision, and a PICC reinsertion. She is a fighter! Grace has a long road ahead, but we have faith in God that she will survive and thrive. 

We've created this website to keep friends and family updated. We will update as we go through testing and treatment. We appreciate your prayers, support and words of hope and encouragement during this time when it matters most.

We are truly asking for prayers! We also will be experiencing large medical bills, travel expenses and Mommy will be on unpaid leave from work unless leave is donated from other Federal Government employees. We are asking if you work for the federal government and can donate leave please contact Mommy or Daddy.  If you want to help out financially you can through this website.  If you still want to help and can't financially, we ask that you donate blood in her honor.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on March 21, 2017

Posted on March 21, 2017

Monday March 20, 2017
Mommy here! 
Grace has had a pretty good week.  She continued with her speech therapy and is learning new "sign" words. She is very good at "more", especially when it comes to chocolate. 

Grace had a great weekend visiting family friends in Virginia and West Virginia.  Grace got to meet many people that have been praying and supporting her over the last year and half.  She also got to meet a few new babies that have been added to our friend's families.  

Coming home on Sunday, Grace was not a happy camper.  It was her third day without pooping. We had been giving her special meds all weekend, but there weren't working.  On our trip back home, Grace ultimately was so uncomfortable and was in pain that she made herself throw up.  The trip back was hard on everyone.  She was still uncomfortable when we got home even though she did poop a little bit.  It wasn't a great night either.  First, she went to bed late because we kept giving more meds in hopes that she would poop more. Then she got up in the middle of the night, obviously still in pain. She eventually went back to sleep.

On the way to her routine clinic visit, the flood gates opened! I pulled off the road and got her cleaned up. She fell right to sleep and stayed asleep until we got to clinic.  Her color was back and her happy self was back. All she needed to do was poop!! At clinic, she was given iv fluids since she didn't eat anything on Sunday.  One day of not eating can make for a grueling week trying to get her hydrated again.  Her counts were great! The doc checked her out and didn't find any noticeable issues, like an infection.  We are just chalking this whole thing up to constipation.

On Sunday May 21, we are walking in the Hope and Heroes Annual Walk which supports the Hope and Heroes Children Cancer Fund, which funds research, integrative therapies and families in need at Columbia Presbyterian.  We created a team: Grace's Gold Ribbon Gang. It's a short walk with lots of family fun on Pier 84 not the West Side of Manhattan near the Intrepid. If you are interested in walking with our team, please go to:
http://hhccf.convio.net/goto/GraceSkuches
You can make a donation to the team if you can't walk. 

We also started a tee shirt booster fundraising page.  All the money raised will go to the Hope and Heroes Fund. You can purchase a short sleeve tee shirt, long sleeve, or a sweatshirt.  All items are delivered after the close out date of April 20.  If you plan to walk with us, we ask that you purchase a shirt to wear that day.  You can purchase a item here: https://www.booster.com/graceskuches

Thank you all for your continued support! God Bless!

Posted on March 16, 2017

Posted on March 16, 2017

Kenneth Skuches  15 March 2017

Gracie's numbers are back up!  Monday was chemo day, Avastin.  As Gracie received her infusion, we had the chance to do some art projects with Nitza, the Clinic Art Director.  She is amazing with the kids!  Messy!!!! But, amazing!  No one ever said, art was neat and clean.  Well, I did but no one listens to me!  Anyway, Gracie loves all the paintings the other kids paint that hang on the wall.  She points to her favorite ones during our strolls.  The program is very special to our family!  We have seen the creative side of Grace and her brother John.  

Not much else going on except our surviving the big snow!  We had about 16 inches.  Best part about the storm was the cozying up by the fire.  Unfortunately, that only lasted through the morning.  After that John went over his friends house and hung out there.  Daddy broke out the snowblower.  The snow turned to rain and after two hours, I was soaked and freezing.  I came in to a nice warm fire or so I thought but Jen let the fire go out and I with my numb fingers had to find a way to open my beer!  Luckily, I am resourceful and prevailed!!!!  I even stoked the fire and all ended up well.  Since St Paddy's day falls on a Friday during lent, Jen made corned beef and cabbage and needless to say, the day ended as well as it started!  

I wanted to continue my driving lessons in the snow but Jen didn't want me teaching kiddies this valuable lesson.  So, I did a couple solo laps around the neighborhood improving my driving skills!  Yup, we lead a pretty boring life!  Well, boring to others, I love it!!!

God Bless!

Posted on March 7, 2017

Posted on March 7, 2017

Our family is so grateful for the donations you have made to assist with Gracie's care.  We are notified of your donation even if it is done anonymously.  We are only given your name.  No information on how to contact you.  If while making a donation you feel you made an error, please contact YouCaring.  They can assist you with corrections.

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