Thursday, July 16, 2009

Summer Days

Absent our disease, today would have been absolutely the most perfect summer day. It was the perfect temperature...warm, not humid, with the perfect breeze passing through. Every flower is at its absolute peak of blooming. The kids are all really into summer now, school is far enough behind and far enough ahead to be completely absent from their minds. The pool water is all warm now and the clouds were making funny shapes in the sky.

Today, Ally actually asked me if we could go to the Walnut Grove pool. She loves to go there and get grilled cheese sandwiches and fries for lunch. In a typical summer, we would go there once a week. We haven't been there at all this year. "Sure", I exclaimed and proceeded to call everyone I know to meet us there. The more the merrier, always my mantra. Plus, Ally doesn't "ask" to do much. She has really been feeling well these days. We packed a big bag of crafts/beads because she couldn't get in the water. (Her port is currently accessed.) I figured we would stay about two hours, and we ended up staying over three. She did great. Amazingly enough, most of the kids ended up hanging right with her. She brought her perler beads again and even the little boys were crafting it up. I was shocked that the other kids did very little swimming. What great friends that she has to do that with her. She ate, she smiled, she got a treat from the snack stand...her Dad even met us there for lunch. Her brother played with his friends, her sister practiced her swimming with Mommy. I felt the summer sun on my skin and for a brief moment I forgot our situation. We were as close to normal as we have been yet. All of the kids were happy and I had three straight hours with no complaints from Ally. Wow.
They line up their towels and eat their grilled cheese.

Doing the bead projects at the table
What is more perfect than sitting in the shade under a 100 year old tree?
We headed home in time to give Ally her antibiotic infusions. On the way home she asked for a Frosty from Wendys. As always, I said "sure" but then that means I have to get one for the other two kids too. And they had just had ice cream at WG. Ah well, such is life. Gotta give the girl some extra calories whenever possible, so it was a double ice cream day for all of them. Isn't that what summer is all about? Carefree and happy to be. It is summer, after all.

I am afraid tomorrow is going to be another tough day. She is gonna get slammed with chemo. A spinal tap with methotrexate, two shots of Peg-aspariganase in her legs (and they hurt for weeks after), and vincristin. Vincristin is the evil chemo that they had given her that whole first month. It is a really tough one and also causes the horrible constipation. I feel pretty sure that she is going to need blood too. She seems quite pale to me today. Most of all, I am hoping that we get some further information on her infection and that these antibiotics are clearing it up. So a long hospital day is in front of us.......


  1. It really could not have gone any better today...I think we all forgot the 'situation' for a brief moment. Ally's friends really do love her. I have learned so much about true friendship from observing the kids behaviors since this all started. They want to make her happy. I believe today everyone was happy...adults too :-)

  2. I know I almost forgot the situation for a bit today too. It seemed like any other time that we have gone to WG pool. She looked great and I got some smiles out of her. Remember this day tomorrow and when the chemo starts to hit her again. You'll have more days like this. And I guess you'll appreciate them more.
    I told her tonight I have to schedule an appointment to have my nails done as I have not had that privilege yet!

  3. Today was a gift, that why we call it the present. So glad you had a blessed day. Prayers for tomorrow . . .

    QBD by A

  4. Yeah for Ally and all of you! I'm proud of her. Maybe she could start ebaying or craigslisting all of her beaded treasures...I'm sure they'd go fast. When my dad went go to Miami Valley, I remember the nurses talking about a boy who sold some wood toys he made or something like that then bought toys and gifts for the chemo ward. I always thought that was really cool, and have never forgotten it.

    I'm sure today will be hard, and the next week as the drugs settle in, but there will be more days like yesterday. Really, there will be. This is all part of the cycle. My thoughts are for all of you today, and everyday.

  5. Praying for your day today! I am so thrilled you had a good day today, Ally and your family deserve it.

  6. So glad you had a good day yesterday! I'm saying prayers for today. YOU NEED A BREAK!

  7. almost perfect summer day (perfect minus the disease)! You all definitely deserved this day, and many more of them! Good luck with Ally's treatment today.

  8. Praying for all of you today--hang in there. Yesterday was a great day and you will have many more. Ally and your entire family are fighters. I remember that Vincristin shit--but it is doing its job. Glad the other kids got to swim and you enjoyed some sun. You are all in my prayers everyday.

  9. What a treat! There's nothing better than a pool day like that with good friends and fried food! Reminds me of our fun days in East Lansing. I am so happy that all of you got to enjoy it and store that memory in your bank to get through the hard days. We are all saying extra prayers today for strength and stamina, and that you get her out of there in time to feel the warm sun on her face again today!

  10. Janel,
    Beautifully written. I could feel the sun on me and taste those yummy grilled cheese, but most of all I could visualize the smile on Ally face.
    As always, I have you all in my daily thoughts and prayers.