As a family physician in Canmore, Lise-Marie became concerned when her 17-month-old daughter, Elle, stopped weight bearing. After a couple trips to the local hospital with no answers, she decided to bring her in to the Alberta Children’s Hospital. While she had some ideas as to what they might be looking for, she was completely shocked when the emergency doctor broke the news that their sweet little girl had leukemia. Her blood counts were so low she required multiple transfusions and was to begin chemotherapy right away.

To further overwhelm the situation, Lise-Marie was 32-weeks pregnant with their second child. Arrangements were made for a scheduled induction at 38 weeks in order to accommodate Elle’s chemo schedule. Those weeks were a blur of little sleep as Elle experienced many reactions to the chemo. Sadly, she did not go into remission after the first round of treatment so her case was escalated to High Risk ALL. Lise-Marie remembers many exhausting days of trying to care for her new baby and comfort her little girl. Her and her husband, Chris are so grateful for the support they received from the hospital team as they navigated those difficult days.

Over the course of her treatment, little Elle enchanted her doctors and nurses with her sweet smile and gentle spirit. Oncology Fellow, Dr. George, quickly became a new best friend. He would take the time to play with Elle before he would undertake any exam and he always enjoyed their little chats in French (the family is bilingual).

It was August 2015 that Elle began her treatment. In December 2017, she had her last chemo. The majority of her life, she’s lived with a central line and daily medications. Thanks to the expert team at the Alberta Children’s Hospital, sweet Elle is now able to turn the page and put this painful chapter of her life behind her.

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