|I'm so glad he will put the video game down sometimes.|
We’ve been cramming roses up our noses these last couple of weeks as we were locked into a collision course on the calendar with Eli’s first post-treatment scan for brain cancer. The scan is today, December 14, but we had many peripheral appointments beforehand, so he and I pulled out late afternoon Tuesday headed to the 4th Chickasaw Bluff on which sits the 20th largest city in the United States. Named after the ancient capital of Egypt, Memphis has what most cities have and that’s the good, the bad, and the ugly, and some pretty stuff, too. The Grizzlies House, a hotel on the St. Jude campus sponsored by the NBA team Memphis Grizzlies, was full by the time we got here Tuesday, so we were sent to nearby Crowne Plaza on St. Jude’s dime. We always cross our fingers for a downtown view of The Pyramid and the Hernando de Soto Bridge which connects West Memphis, Arkansas and Memphis, Tennessee via Interstate 40.
|It doesn't matter where we go, he will always find a way to|
play with is cars and watch TV. This is in the hotel.
Eli and I begin at 800 hours with triage and other prep work. The MRI will begin at 945 hours, with a lumbar puncture also scheduled while he is under. After sedation recovery, about noon he will have his shunt valve reprogrammed because it is a magnet and the MRI machine knocks it off its setting. So, our nurse has a little magic wand she uses to digitally readjust it back to the correct setting. It takes seconds, and he doesn’t feel it. I think that little tool should be showcased in medical history.His appointments so far this week have been benign, but busy. The endocrinologist basically said she wants to just watch him, but that so far he has no endocrine deficiencies. We expect this to change over time and for him to need some kind of hormone therapy.
|Just passing the time, waiting our turn.|
|Eli helping make our first batch of carrot|
and apple juice.
Yes! I put a big checkmark on the juicer, finally letting it intimidate me no more. We even brought it to Memphis with us, but it is a challenge to use it in a hotel room. I am still such a baby at it, but we believe the natural regiment with the supplements we were prescribed is going to be a significant factor in his healing. It just makes sense that his body needs healthy fuel to work or do its job, which is to basically bring itself back from the brink of being poisoned to a healthy state. I just don’t see how it could work very efficiently or successfully without the right kind of sources to pull from. We will not be perfect at it because that is just not how I roll, but I don’t see how we could not try. He did have an appointment last week with Dr. Rawdon, the homeopathic doctor, that went well. Eli had improved on the number of “impurities” in his body, and his ph balance was better. We still have work to do, but we are on the right track with it. So, leading up to tomorrow, I have had my checkmark stamp cocked, loaded and firing for the last couple of weeks as the pressure of this day has been building. My iPhone calendar looks like something that ate a bunch of dots puked on it as each day is decorated with a little dot to indicate that there is something happening on that day with which someone in our family is involved. After the 14th, no puking of dots on the calendar. All we have, all our chips, ride on Friday; there is no need to really plan much beyond tomorrow yet.
|Hg and I were given a chance to meet Condi|
Rice. That is her in the background. They
wouldn' t let us take our own pictures.
So, at home I’ve been trying to get in as much as I can with all the kids because there is the potential of Eli and me being torn away from the family again. Then I concentrated on getting the house in order within the limits of the latter objective, because there is the potential of relying on friends for the running of our household if Eli and I are torn away again. So, Jill came over this past week to help with laundry, and Melissa has been with me several days cleaning out and putting up (yes, I am still unpacking from when we moved back from Memphis in September). One day she and I were in a transition moment with the mess at home, needing to pick the next project or chore to tackle and she said, “Well, you tell me what you want us to do. I want to help you get to that happy place.” I don’t know that I have ever gotten to a happy place, but I do pass through occasionally. I know that after Dr. Robinson says, “He looks good, it all came back clear” it will only take about two seconds for my brain to think, “The next scan will be in March.” I learned a new word from Parents of Kids with Medulloblastoma on Facebook, and the word is “Scanxiety.” I don’t think I have to define it. I have been pretty calm and confident so far, I think, however, tonight I can feel a subtle knot in the pit of my stomach threatening to grow. Thank you for helping me spread the word about tomorrow so our petition for healing is loud and clear in Heaven. It is such a source of comfort to us knowing that he is being lifted up. I will post something as soon as I am able. Have your prayer of thanksgiving ready.
|Abbey and her girl scout buddies having fun|
before carolling to a group of widows.
|Hg and friend Sophie working on the girl scout|
float for the Christmas parade.
|Tailgating at the Christmas parade waiting for Hg to come by.|
|Hg in the center of the girl scouts float.|
|Another big checkmark!|
|The kids at Bett's house making ornaments for her tree.|
|No big suprise what his ornament is to paint.|
|The kids love to use the chalk at Bett's house.|
Mostly, they outline each other, then have fun
jumping around and stomping on each other's
bodies, then drawing "X's" for their eyes, like
they are dead. Christmas fun!
|We brought some candy for the nurses, and some of the|
offices at St. Jude, plus some chocolate Santa's for kids. I
am also handing out the Starbucks gc's and cards to parents.
|We delivered these boxes of stress toys from Northrup-Grumman.|
I have a feeling there will be a lot of strong forearms around St. Jude.