After adopting girl without limbs, US couple's adopted Filipino son battles Big C


Posted at May 20 2017 04:45 PM | Updated as of May 21 2017 12:36 AM

After adopting girl without limbs, US couple's adopted Filipino son battles Big C 1
Jason Stewart and son Joshua. Photo from Stewart family's Facebook Page

The American family whose adoption of a Filipina kid born without arms and legs touched hearts through social media is currently facing a tough battle involving their six-year old son, a Filipino boy they adopted five years ago.

Adrianne and Jason Stewart's son Joshua was recently diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), a rare type of leukemia.

In a post on Facebook, the couple shared how they found out about their son's illness.

It was in late March when their son fell ill with what they thought was just flu. They brought him to a clinic and was told that the boy had strep throat. But when the boy did not get better after several days of treatment, they brought him back to the clinic.

"There, he was first diagnosed with anemia, and we were admitted to the hospital for treatment. On April 4th, the doctor met with us about some tests that they were running on him, because things did not meet the normal results," the couple said.

"This is where the big news hit us hard. Our son was diagnosed with AML, or Acute Myeloid Leukemia. By the end of the week, he had begun his chemotherapy treatment," the couple said.

The couple adopted Joshua from the Philippines in 2012.

“After a year of paperwork we waited 3 years to be matched with our only son, Joshua. He had just turned one year old when we picked him up, and we bonded almost instantly with him. He has been an amazing addition to our family and we cannot imagine life without him,” said the couple, who has two biological daughters.

In a Facebook post on Friday, the family said Joshua had a bone marrow biopsy done weeks ago, and it showed no evidence of cancer.

"We are so happy with this wonderful news and have much hope for his future!" they said.

The Stewarts remain positive despite Joshua's condition and said they would focus on getting through the rest of his treatment.

"He will be in and out of the hospital for the next several months as he endures 3 more rounds of intense chemo[therapy] and recovery to make sure that any undetected cancer cells hiding in his body have been destroyed. This will give him a better chance of not relapsing in the future," they said.

While sad and sorry that Joshua would have to go through difficult treatment, the Stewarts saw God's hands in how they came to adopt the Filipino boy. For the couple, fate gave them the chance to save Joshua's life. 

"We feel that God led Joshua's mother to give him up for a greater reason than what she originally thought. She was hoping to give him a chance at a better life, but the reality now is that in her giving him up she has given him a chance at life," the couple said. 

"In the Philippines and other impoverished countries, most kids with Acute Myeloid Leukemia don't even live long enough to be diagnosed. Even if they do end up getting diagnosed, many will not survive long, as their families cannot afford the high costs of chemotherapy and the long hospital stays," read their latest post on Joshua's condition.

"It is very sad, but we feel so blessed that we have a chance at saving his life. His birth mother most likely will never know what she has done to give her son the best chance of survival," the Stewarts said.

The couple extended gratitude to those who support them and continue to find ways to help them out.

A friend of the family started a GoFundMe page to help them with Joshua’s treatment.