Silas Rehbein is 4 years old and full of spirit.
“He’s by far our most challenging child of four boys,” his mom, Savannah, said with a chuckle.
But she wouldn't change a thing about him, except to somehow erase cancer from his life.
Silas' journey started at dinner one night in the fall of 2016. He complained of a stomach ache and felt warm. The next day, he was too sick to finish the school day. Savannah picked him up early and later that night, desperately tried to stop a bloody nose.
After a series of tests and consultations with doctors near their home in Dickinson, N.D., they learned the devastating news: Silas was facing acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
“Of course, when you get that kind of news you immediately go from the diagnosis to death because you really don’t know any different,” Savannah said.
The next morning, Sanford AirMed transported Silas across the state to Sanford Children’s Fargo and Roger Maris Cancer Center.
The family had mixed feelings.
They were saddened to be so far from home, but relieved to get more answers and a treatment plan to fight Silas’ blood cancer.
So far, Silas has undergone blood transfusions, surgery and chemotherapy and experienced several setbacks. Through it all, his oncology team has been open and honest with the family and answers every question.
“The doctors, they’ve been great,” Savannah said. “They make sure we understand everything that’s going on and make sure we are comfortable with everything that’s going on.”
The Child Life Specialists help his three brothers understand what’s going on.
“They’re there to help with the kids and keep them comfortable,” said Savannah. From time to time, the Child Life Specialists and nurses comfort Savannah and her husband, Carl, too. It’s a constant struggle for them, to stay strong while trying to balance Silas’ care, their other boys' lives back home and their own work schedules.
“Everyone works really hard and makes sure we are taken care of,” Savannah said. “So they’ve been amazing.”
Support from Brave Kids Bold Cures helps keep Sanford Children's and the Roger Maris Cancer Center on the cutting edge of pediatric cancer care, supporting lifesaving technology, equipment and services to care for kids like Silas. All of this fills the Rehbeins with strength, and hope.
“His treatment is three and a half years with no major setbacks,” Savannah said. “He’s going to be 8 years old by the time this is all said and done. I just hope that he goes on to be a healthy, happy adult. Most of all, happy and healthy.”
You can help kids like Silas and their families with a gift to Brave Kids Bold Cures.
Help Silas today.