Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Day 1 of Delayed Intensification II

We received the call late yesterday that Ally's bloodwork was finally acceptable for her to start treatment again. Her platelets were well above the 75 threshold at 124. So today, Ally and Jerad left for the hospital at 730 am...she will be getting a spinal tap, several chemos, and her monthly infusion of antibiotics. My heart is heavier than normal today. As they walked out the door my tears began. I am missing her first procedure ever today because now Evan has caught the fever that Carly had last Fri/Sat. He is doing alright, but I certainly didn't want to leave him with one of my caregivers and spread the germs to their kids. I imagine he could have already infected half of his school since he came home from school yesterday with the fever and I didn't know he had it. So although, I wanted to be with Ally, I must keep my other children safe and well too. It is so important to me that the siblings never be forgotten or left as an afterthought.

During the spinals, Jerad always stays right up in Ally's face. Like two inches away. She watches for her Daddy and he talks her through it. He is her protector during these scary times. She would choose him to be right there with her. I don't blame her. Daddies are meant to protect and Jerad is about as comforting a person as you can get. So Ally is in good hands today. My biggest regret about not being there is that I am not going to get to hear the Day 1 talk where they tell us everything we can expect for the next eight weeks. They usually go over a calendar with us and talk about side effects, etc. This is going to be a very rough eight weeks that will be punctuated by Ally getting cranial radiation in the middle of the phase (beginning/middle May). I have many questions, debates, and fears about this. I guess they will be answered later when we meet with her Radiation Oncologist in Cincinnati. I asked Jerad to either record the conversations on his phone today or take notes. We'll see. While he is the protector, I am more the keeper of medical information and the person the doctors talk to. I am the researcher and the calendar keeper and the one who has a brainful of information filed away from countless hours spent on the computer....following other kids and learning the best I can to protect Ally in that way. I am the one who asks all the questions. (I know, shocker) It will all work out.

We have been given some sort of strength to get through this ordeal. We will need all the strength we can get to make it through this next phase. Jerad sent me a picture that he took from his cell phone. It was the sky right outside Ally's hospital room window today. He said he thinks someone is peeking out from the sky today and watching over our daughter. And I think he is right.....Praying day 1 goes well. Tonight starts the dreaded steriods. God will help us through.


  1. Praying all goes well for you and for Ally. She is one brave, tough little girl and an inspiration to many>
    also, just read the post about your sweet dog, I am so sorry for your loss.
    tara pakosta

  2. Janel, thinking and praying for you, Jerad, Ally, Evan and Carly through this next phase! I hope Evan and Carly get past all of the yuckies soon. Just remember, Ally's Army is right by your side and will be until Ally has won the race :-) Jenny Black

  3. It's been a few days since I've read your story... First, I'm so sorry for your loss. I remember Bitsy well- and of course how much your mom loved her.
    I'm so excited for your celebration! One year is quite a feat and it should be celebrated. Is there any way for out-of-towners to donate to your dad's LLS Man of the Year efforts?
    And finally, and most importantly, I am sending strong thoughts and prayer for this set of treatment and Evan and Carly's quick return to 100%. Ally's lucky to have both you and Jared as all of Ally's Army is lucky to have her. My best always!

  4. My prayers are with you tonight, I hope Ally does better with the steroids this time and that her little bro is feeling better too. Most of all though, I am so glad that you and Jerad have each other. You are such a well balanced and well matched couple. It's a comfort to know that you are so loved and taken care of my sweet!

  5. Hang in there, Janel....think of it as being one day closer to maintenance. YOU ARE ALMOST THERE and I promise life will be normal again and your beautiful Ally will start to blossom and become the 8 year old she should be! I'm praying for all of you that this phase flies by and you never have to look back.
    Hugs ~

  6. YES she was looking over all of you today. So sorry to hear about Bitsy. I remember your mom telling me all about how you all found her out side of a church I think. Janel, I sooooooo wish that this was all behind all of you, but, you are soooooo close. The finish line is near. I am sure that the Dr.s will be happy to answer any and all of your quesitons. Wishing Evan a speedy recovery and hopes that Carly is spared whatever is going around. Keep the faith. Prayers for all of you.

  7. Mom was right there as she has been through this entire process. Lots of good thoughts and prayers coming your way today and all through this phase. You are closing in on the end and together we can do this. Take care and so sorry about Shiloh. I do remember Bitsy and how she was loved. Many prayers and thoughts coming your way. Wish I lived closer to attend the celebration, but please let us know how we can help your dad reach his goal. He sure did help us in our time of need. Thanks!!

  8. Sunday at church, these words from the hymn "Because He Lives" jumped out at me and made me think of Ally.

    "How sweet to hold a newborn baby,
    and feel pride and joy He gives;
    but greater still the calm assurance,
    this child can face uncertain days because He lives."

    May you continue to find strength and reassurance through God's love.