A father’s video captures the doting nurse’s assistant who pulled out all the stops, dancing to Christmas music to bring as smile his leukemia-stricken daughter’s face.
Three-year-old Pearl Monroe was diagnosed with leukemia last week and was immediately started on chemotherapy, so she’s been cooped up at Brenner Children’s Hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina ever since.
Pearl Monroe’s cancer is highly curable, according to FOX8, where her father Chad Tucker is a reporter, but after surgery and treatment, the hospital stay was getting her down.
Until certified nurse’s assistant Marcia Love-Bowens swept in to brighten her day with her dance moves to Jingle Bell Rock.
Love-Bowens is among the constantly attentive oncology team that looks after Pearl Monroe – whom her family calls ‘Roe-Roe’ – and the other children of Brenner’s cancer ward.
‘When Roe-Roe started getting a little fussy, Marcia turned on her songs on her phone and started dancing to entertain Pearl Monroe and her older sister, Carson Parry,’ Tucker said.
In recent months, Pearl started complaining of aches and pains. Her jaw hurt. So did her arms, legs and fingers.
‘We knew something was wrong,’ Chad told the Winston-Salem Journal.
‘We were thinking it was some kind of virus.’
Nurse’s assistant Marcia Love-Bowens (left) gleefully danced around Pearl Monroe’s (right) room at Brenner Children’s Hospital in Salem-Winston, North Carolina, to cheer the three-year-old patient up after her diagnosis with leukemia, surgery and chemotherapy
The todler’s parents say her survival odds are very good, but say she may be battling it for ‘years’ to come
Her parents, Chad and Meredith, took her to a number of hospitals before they finally got a diagnosis: Pearl Monroe had leukemia.
Some 3,500 children are diagnosed with leukemia – a cancer of the tissues that form blood cells, including the bone marrow – each year in the US, making it the most common pediatric cancer.
It’s a dreaded moment for parents, but childhood leukemia survival rates are quite good.
For the two more common forms, acute lymphatic leukemia and acute myelogenous leukemia, five-year survival rates are 90 percent and 65 to 70 percent, respectively.
For rarer forms, survival rates are somewhat lower, ranging from 50 to 80 percent.
It’s not clear what form of leukemia Pearl Monroe has.
She’s undergone surgery and begun chemotherapy for the disease, and her parents are optimistic.
In an impromptu performance, Love-Bowens pulled out her phone and started twirling, clapping and bobbing for Pearl Monroe (left). Almost instantly, the sick little girl’s face lit up with a bright smile (right)
‘It’s been a whirlwind the past few days with surgery, medicine and getting use to our new normal,’ Chad told Fox8.
‘The good news – this leukemia is highly curable but it’s going to take several years of fighting.’
Love-Bowens and the rest of the oncology team will be not only treating but cheering on little Pearl Monroe as her battle continues.
‘She is just one of the many amazing staff members of the pediatric oncology team,’ Chad told FOX8.
‘They really are God’s helpers in bringing healing and laughter to Pearl Monroe.’
Some days that might mean drawing blood or giving her her chemotherapy drugs.
Others, it means whirling and twirling to the Jingle Bell Rock.