(COLORADO SPRINGS) — The Boyne family received unexpected news before Christmas, that separated the family and had their son spend his first holiday in the hospital.
“We went in for about four months check and the doctor just noticed kind of his abdomen felt a little abnormal,” Chelsea Boyne, mother of Leo, said. “So she sent us in for an ultrasound for him and we took him in, not really thinking a whole lot was going to happen. Just maybe there was something wrong. He had an enlarged liver, so we took him in for an ultrasound.”
Leonidas (Leo) Boyne was diagnosed at four-months-old with Neuroblastoma on Dec. 22 and was admitted to Children’s Hospital in Aurora.
“It was tough because they went up for that CT scan the next day and for some reason, I thought they’d be back that night and they never came back for 15 days throughout Christmas,” said Chris Boyne, Leo’s father. “And I largely stayed with my two daughters, had to carry on and act like I was still happy Christmas time, which was a challenge. And then, yeah, he received his first shot of chemo, kind of an emergency deal.”
According to the American Cancer Society, Neuroblastoma starts in early nerve cells and is often found in infants and young children.
“It’s pushing up on his lungs and it’s pushing on his heart and it’s pushing on his kidneys, and it’s spread into his liver,” Chelsea said. “And so, it’s a kind of a fast-moving disease, as you know, since… he was diagnosed at only four months old and it’s huge, they say his mass is four centimeters.”
Leo’s father shared that Leo has one large mass in his abdomen and several others in his liver. The mass is intertwined around many of his internal organs which is complicating surgery.
“And we’re still waiting on some results for some tests to get where we go from here,” Chris said. “Two days ago, they deemed us he was stable enough to come home, which has been wonderful.”
The family is now back all together after Chelsea and Leo spent weeks in the hospital.
“He’s enjoying it, the snuggles,” Chelsea said. “I think he’s enjoying… you can tell he remembers our old routine even though being gone for two weeks, he kind of slip back into playing with his sisters and hanging out.
The family continues to await a diagnosis, but results have been delayed from holiday weekends and closed labs.
“So there’s been a lot of hurdles,” Chris said. “I think even once, once we know more, even if it’s bad, at least for now, you know, we’ll be ready to just kind of face it then. But yes, it’s been a struggle just to just to get to this point.”
To spend more time with the family, Chris had to quit his second job and said it is devastating.
“I mean, I’ve been working two jobs just to try to survive in this environment that we have right now with, you know, prices being what they are and everything,” Chris said. “I’ve had to quit my second job so I can be available to watch them and try to actually attend some doctor things. So, it’s going to be rough.”
Amanda Krans, Leo’s aunt, created a GoFundMe page to support the Boyne’s family.
“I think a lot of people kept asking how they could help and at the time when we were, I mean, we’re dealing with his diagnosis and we’re trying to figure things out. I think the best way we could think to ask for help was money, because bills were probably the biggest barrier to us doing anything,” Chris said. “And so I think asking for money was probably the easiest way that we could ask people to help support us.”
Next week, Leo will start his second round of chemo.
“They did a big scan on him to find out, you know, if it’s other places and then we’ll go from there,” Chris said. “And yeah, I mean, he starts the second round of chemo next week. So that’s about where we’re at as far as all we know.”