Owen Bridgewater

Owen-250x250Owen Bridgewater is 6 ½ years old. He was diagnosed with ALL (acute lymphoblastic leukemia) at age 5. Owen enjoys swimming, riding his bike, t-ball and school.

Three weeks before Owen’s 6th birthday, his life changed with one phone call. Our doctor told us that it looked like Owen had leukemia and we needed to get to the hospital as fast as possible. We ended up staying in the hospital for 2 weeks after officially being diagnosed with ALL (leukemia) and a whirlwind of tests, chemotherapy, and procedures began. For almost the next year, Owen didn’t leave the house except to go to clinic and/or the hospital because of his weak immune system. He had to miss all of Kindergarten and could not do the things that he loved, like go swimming or play with his friends. He has had countless chemotherapy treatments, spinal taps, blood transfusions, and labs done. He has spent more nights in the hospital than we care to count and has spent more days sitting in doctor’s offices than most adults ever will.

He is currently in his 2nd year of the “maintenance” stage of treatments and is ending his school year as a 1st grader. He is currently going to school full time, but he has had to miss several days because of low blood counts, an unplanned hospital stay, and monthly trips into clinic. He plays soccer and baseball, is in swimming lessons all summer long, and loves to play with his friends. People are surprised to learn that he is still undergoing chemotherapy treatments for leukemia because he looks and acts like a normal 7 1/2 year old boy. Owen has handled all the changes that having cancer has brought into his life so well; he rarely feels sorry for himself and does everything that is asked of him without complaining. To him, taking chemo pills at night, going to the doctor a lot, and having your blood tested weekly is just part of a normal life.  He focuses on the positive things that having leukemia has brought him (like going to Camp Rainbow Gold in the summer, meeting a lot of wonderful people, and getting to go on a Disney Cruise with Make A Wish) rather than all of negative. I think we all could learn a valuable lesson from his experience! He truly is an amazing little boy!

To him, taking chemo pills at night, going to the doctor a lot, and having your blood tested weekly is just part of a normal life.  He focuses on the positive things that having leukemia has brought him (like going to Camp Rainbow Gold in the summer, meeting a lot of wonderful people, and getting to go on a Disney Cruise with Make A Wish) rather than all of negative. I think we all could learn a valuable lesson from his experience! He truly is an amazing little boy!