Today Eliza was able to have her 4th round of chemotherapy. Her fever lingered through the weekend, but responded to Tylenol, and never reached a point that worried the doctors. Once you have lab results that tell you your white blood cells are high and infection markers low, breathing gets a little easier.
Then after the first day of school (see below), Sam was wiped out. And since then he’s had a low fever that responds to Tylenol and then creeps back up again. Well well well. So there you have it: the concern has always been that the boys will give something to Eliza, but she gave something to them first!
Our other concern, you’ll recall, was the &$%# port. (That was just for you, KPS.) We were afraid the new one was infected, or perhaps that just the incision was. And when we took her in Friday they couldn’t get blood from it, so we were afraid there would be another surgery and another port. She already has nice symmetrical scars from the 2 so far, so it would be a shame to mess that up. Anyway, it turned out today it had flipped again, but the surgeon flipped it back and getting the chemo in was no problem. So it’s a frustration, but nothing scary.
Round 4 will be finishing up around the time I post this, and hopefully the girls will come home tomorrow afternoon. Then next week we’ll have MRI’s and the like to get ready for surgery, which will probably be the week of 16 September.
In other exciting news, we are back to school! Sam started Monday in Year 2 (= first grade) at Riverside, where he was the second half of last year. He has a new teacher who we already like, and is happy to be back with his school friends. Sadly he had to miss today and probably tomorrow, so hopefully he’ll be back Thursday. He’s very excitedly planning a Lego Ninja Turtle party with some other boys. We think it involves a demonstration of ninja skills, so here’s hoping.
Foard is at a different preschool this year called Bambino. It’s bilingual, so after he gets adjusted he’ll start going with the Czech group. I took him for a couple hours Monday. He was very sad when I left, but had cheered up when I came back and said his lunch was “better than cake.” (He doesn’t like cake all that much, but he knows most people do, so the comparison works on 2 levels. Kid’s a genius.) Today he stayed all day and didn’t bat an eye before going in. We’re so proud of our little guy, and excited and hopeful for his Czech learning.
Each boy got to pick our dinner on his first day, and eat on our special star plate. (It’s for birthdays and other special occasions. Hand-painted. One of the many perks of living with Melissa Hunt.) So last night we had homemade pizzas, and tonight dinosaur chicken nuggets. Sam ate 8 pieces of pizza. Foard ate one brachiosaurus and a little bit of a T-rex.
It’s surreal to be starting another year this way, but it’s also surreal how far along we are in the process. The next step is surgery, which is scary, but we’re also looking forward to knowing the tumor is out of E’s body. But we decided the other day that being in the middle of treating cancer is less scary to us than being done. Right now our job is defined: fight cancer. Though the cancer’s still there, there’s something comforting about having a goal and steps. When we’re finished, it will mean there are no more steps to take– just occasional tests, and living. Hoping, trying not to hold our breath. Attempting to move on.
We still need a lot of prayer. For critical things like E and Sam’s fevers, and for little things like the way we see this affecting the boys, their behavior and hearts. I (Jake) have had bad sinus headaches the last several days. E’s not always sleeping through the night, which means Melissa’s not always sleeping through the night. We’re all tired, and tired of this.
God’s nearness is our good. Please pray that he will strengthen us with that truth, and that we will know it and feel it.