Lizzy had an outpatient treatment today and as far as treatments go, it was “routine”. One of the nurses had on a t-shirt that had words on the back that totally captured how Lori and I feel about our little Lizzy. See for yourself . . . .
In case you can’t read it, it says “Sometimes, real Superheroes live in the hearts of small children fighting big battles”. Lizzy is a Superhero indeed!!
On Monday Lori took Lizzy for a blood draw and her ANC level had bounced back to 1,170 (last week it was 20). It wasn’t quite back to “normal” range (1,500 – 8,000), but close enough, and a huge rebound from the week before. We were grateful for the 1,170 number, and it meant today’s treatment could proceed as planned. The treatment today was only 1 drug, so we were only in clinic about 2.5 hours (relatively speaking, that’s a really short clinic visit!).
On Monday night, I was perusing some viewing options on Amazon Prime and I came across a TV show from the 70’s called The Walton’s (yes, Lori and I remember The Walton’s from when we were kiddos). So, I told the girls I had a show I wanted them to watch. The show was actually Season 1, Episode 1 and it was called “The Foundling”. It was about a little deaf girl that was secretly abandoned on the Walton’s doorstep by her mother because the father didn’t think they could take care of a deaf girl. The Walton’s took her in and learned how to communicate with her. The parallels to our situation were obvious, but what was really cool was to watch as the girls were totally enthralled with the show. It kept their attention the whole time, and they were even talking about it later that night and into the next day. I think it just goes to show that a good story about people loving people is always a hit!
Yesterday I was having lunch with a friend when Lori texted me. The text said “The hair is coming out!!”.
(bag of hair waiting for The Hair Fairy)
We were told the first go around that Lizzy would probably lose her hair, but she never did. So this time around when we were told she would lose her hair, we sort of shrugged and didn’t think too much about it. But now it looks like it’s going to happen. And it’s turning out to be a much bigger deal than we anticipated.
For Lizzy, it’s very exciting for 2 reasons. #1 – during the first treatment cycle, she was given a book that talked about kids going through chemo and losing their hair. When that happened, the kids got a visit from the Hair Fairy – think Tooth Fairy only with bigger gifts under the pillow! So, Lizzy is very excited to get a visit from the Hair Fairy. #2 – Lizzy and her daddy (me) agreed last cycle that if Lizzy’s hair started to fall out, together they would have a head shaving party. Well, her hair never fell out so we never had the party. Now that it has started to fall out, she very much wants us to have the head shaving party. So, there’s a good chance that the next time I put up a post on this Blog, there will be a picture of a couple of shiny heads!!
But beyond Hair Fairies and head shaving parties, I think the hair falling out is impacting Lori and I much harder than it is Lizzy. And I think that’s because for the first time since this journey started back in November, there is starting to be a visual reminder of this battle we are fighting.
You see, during the first treatment cycle, there were lots of times when Lizzy and Treasure would run and play and laugh and for the briefest of moments, you could find yourself not remembering that she has cancer. You could just get caught up in the moment and be carefree. The cancer was still there, but there was no visual reminder that it was there.
That changes when her hair falls out.
There will still be times of running and playing and laughing with her sister. And we will want to be caught up in the moment and be carefree. But the visual reminder will be there. Constantly. Every moment of every day. And it will be hard, no, it will be impossible, to have even the briefest of moments of not remembering that she has cancer. And to think about the battle we are in. We know we are not alone – God is with us and fighting for us.
Please don’t think I’m complaining or whining. I’m not. I’m being honest. It’s just that Lori and I will soon have a very sobering visual reminder of where we are. I don’t regret for a second where we are. I regret Lizzy has cancer, but if she is going to have cancer, then Lori and I are 100% thankful that God brought Lizzy into our lives so that we can go through this journey with her. We absolutely would not want it any other way.
After all, not many people can say that every day they get hugs and kisses from a Superhero!