Friday, September 3, 2010
Inpatient chemo is done. Done. Done, Done.
We are almost there my friends. Almost to the half way point and supposedly, a little more normalcy. And that would be wonderful.
Our visit was actually pretty good. Piper was a trooper and as usual, she totally melted all the nurses and techs and anyone else who wandered into her path. She ran no fevers, and only had that same ARA-C rash that she gets every time...small red dots that travel all over her body but never seem to bother her. Piper's first night was incredibly busy as poor Nurse Heather had to be in and out all night doing vitals, chemo and eye drops. She attempted to consolidate as much as she could each visit but so much of Pipers treatments are timed...and not with sleeping as a priority. At the suggestion of Dora, Aidyns mommy, we traded out Pipers crib for a regular bed and she slept through every thing on Wednesday night, all curled up to me. So, so, so much better than sleeping in that uncomfortable chair with her on my chest all night. ugh.
We finished up with the ARA-C at about 9:30am on Thursday, waited the 3 hours to begin the last chemo infusion, peg-asparaginase, which ran for 2 hours. We then found out that Pipers hemoglobin was 7.9 and they transfuse at 8, so we knew since her blood counts were only going to drop more that she needed a blood transfusion before going home. When all was said and done we were able to leave at 7:00pm and I made it home right before Miss Linley faded off into dreamland.
Major thanks to both my mom and sister for helping me out at the hospital and major thanks to my mother in law for holding down the fort here at our home with Linley and Chad. Charlotte made this homecoming the best yet...no dishes to do, a stocked fridge, Linley all prepped for school the next day and the laundry all folded up. I cannot tell you how much of a blessing all 3 of those ladies were to our family.
So now we wait, again, for Pipers counts to drop. She will become Neutropenic (zero or close to no white and red blood cells etc) and last time this happened after this chemo she ran a fever which resulted in a nasty infection in her port line and a 9 day hospital stay. I am praying we can skip the fever this time, but truly I just want to skip the Leukemia ever showing up. As of right now, she is still feeling pretty good and surprisingly has not thrown up once since Monday.
As I have said before this was Pipers last planned hospital stay. Obviously, I am aware that she will still be required to go in for fevers and the like, but no more chemo. Praise God! She will have a sedation with chemo around the middle of the month, followed by 3 weeks of weekly Vincristine chemo at the clinic. And then Maintenance. Ahhh.
These are a few pictures that I took during our stay. I planned to take more but really, Piper keeps us moving. This is my mom, Piper and I at the entry way into the Aflac unit, Piper pushing around her favorite toy as me and my mom chase her with the IV pole,Piper noshing on some yummy curry rice, Me and Piper sleeping in a better place that the darn chair, and the last chemo hanging on the Iv pole as well as her Beads of Courage...she now has 8 strands. (You cannot see the details but each white bead is a chemo, each black bead is a "poke" or needle prick, each red bead is a blood or platelet transfusion etc...)
This is Labor Day weekend and I am hoping that Piper feels well enough for us to do some fun stuff. We can never make plans but we sure are getting good at being spontaneous. :)