The Friday before her birthday, Paislee’s school called and asked her mom to pick her up. Something was wrong; she was falling asleep in her chair. Paislee’s pediatrician couldn’t see her until the first of the week, so that Monday, Paislee’s mom dragged her daughter out of bed, still exhausted after 16 hours of sleep, to a checkup that would change their lives.
Paislee’s spleen, the doctor said, was the size of a tissue box. And same-day bloodwork performed at the local hospital showed why: Paislee had acute lymphoblastic leukemia — blood cancer. Paislee’s family learned this on the day of her 6th birthday. While the grown-ups worried about next steps, Paislee’s mind was on another matter: her birthday party, already scheduled for the local indoor trampoline park later that week.