In April, 2010, when Andrew was 2 1/2, a tumor was discovered behind his eye. The tumor was removed, but it was found to be an aggressive cancer. He endured seven months of chemo and six weeks radiation. In December of 2010, the day after his last treatment, he was rushed to the ER with an almost fatal bacterial infection. He survived.

He is now seven-years-old!! I don't visit here much, because during the ordeal, this is where I dumped everything--my rage, my fear, my sadness, my ugly, my hope, my everything. But I want all of you who supported and prayed for us to hear his updates. You helped me survive, and I am deeply thankful. Every once in awhile, I will check in to let you know how he's doing. Please continue to pray that cancer will never return to his body. Thank you.

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Bright Side: There's popcorn on the floor, and I don't have to sweep it up

On the windowsill in the hospital room
 Soooo...I have been dreading yesterday, and today, and part of tomorrow, for quite a while.  Back in the hoosegow...(hospital).  We have had three months away, which is amazing considering we were spending every dang weekend in the hospital during those first few months.  "Absence" did not make "the heart grow fonder" in this circumstance... However, I will admit, the hospital is not all bad. 

Sure, there are those things which are... the strange P-shaped pullout couch/bed which is the antonym of "ergonomically correct" (my poor back), the midnight and early morning visits from nurses scrambling around trying not to make noise, and, of course, the dull orange "cure" that is dripping through my son's veins (which is good, but also bad...).

However, I have noticed that there are some nice benefits, and I might as well focus on them, right?

1.  I am still in my jammies and it is 8:25 am.  No worries about what to scrape together for lunch, or half-naked boys who "can't find any pants!," or screams of pain because "he's singing about me!" or searching for Zoom-a-goo-glow-in-the-dark shoes that were "just here!" and now, are not.  (Although, I am afraid, my first grader will almost certainly be tardy...John called me at 8 am and the boys were still sleeping...and the lunches were still not made.  School starts at 8:45.  But here I am, in my jammies. Can't blame me.) 

2.  The shuffling nurses woke me up just in time to see the beautiful sunset (oops, I mean sunrise).  I'm a night owl.  I never see sunrises.

3.  I have had time to figure out what everyone means by "ISO" (well, kinda).  Yes, I know.  I keep hearing about them.  I see people put little notes at the bottom of their photos describing which aperture and which ISO (or are those the same thing?) they used,  and I feel photographically intimidated.  However, so far, I have not taken the time to figure it out.  So I did this morning, with the sunrise.  Maybe that wasn't the best of subjects? because all of the pictures came out looking pretty much the same? but at least I fiddled around with it. I am a little less in the dark. A little.

4.  I have had time to read the short story that my friend has been begging me to read. Albeit, "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse" was playing loudly in the background, so I'm not sure I got the depth of meaning she was hoping me to glean from it, but I did read it.

5. The boys ate popcorn in bed and then dumped the whole bag on themselves (and the floor),  and someone else has to clean it up...  (Come to think of it, the popcorn is still here, on the floor. No one is cleaning it up, and I keep stepping on it.  Maybe that one's a push? )  

6.  No dirty laundry or dirty dishes staring me in the face (except the cafeteria trays with left-over jello, chocolate milk and the chicken soup Andrew keeps rejecting.) 

7. I'm getting caught up on movies I have missed.  I just saw "The Blind Side" last night.  Finally.  I have also memorized all of the words to "Max & Ruby's Perfect Pumpkin" and the "three additional episodes."

8.  Plenty of Mommy-and-Andrew time.  I am the recipient of hugs and kisses and zerbits (a bit slobbery, but sweet), and I get to participate in thoughtful three-year-old conversations.  With a sad little frown, Andrew told me, pushing his scrambled eggs around his plate, that he could no longer be "Luigi" for Halloween because Luigi does not eat eggs, and Luigi does not go to the hospital.  We discussed.  

9.  We have a nice view, with a window seat (at least for a three-year-old).

10.  Tomorrow we will be able to scratch one more "chemo" off  the calendar.  Eleven down.  Three to go.


  1. That's so so good -- only 3 more to go! I hope it gets better for you and that sweet little boy. A question though: is he *sure* that Luigi doesn't eat eggs? You could probably find your way around those hurdles. ;)

  2. (I still get confused w/ ISO.... and half the other photography terms... doh...)

  3. Eleven down and three to go is awesome!! You go Andrew! Good job focusing on the positive... I hope you're home in your non-P-shaped bed soon.

  4. Oh you are so close to the end of that tunnel! I hope you have something special planned when you finish up with that last one. :)

    I am loving that you are learning on your camera! Playing around is the best way to learn. ISO is for the lighting...the lower the natural light the higher the ISO and the f stop is my favorite to play with. The lower the f stop {aka aperture} the less things are in focus around your subject. These are probably layman's terms for explaing them but that is what works for me! ;-)

  5. I'm sure Luigi has been to the hospital before -- probably to have his plumbing checked...

    I can't believe chemo is 79% done! That's amazing!!!

  6. Eleven down and only three to go?! That's wonderful!

    There are some bright sides to being out of the house for a little while, but I know it's always nice to get back home.

    Keep looking at the bright side. :)

  7. Hooray, eleven down!! Thinking about you guys. Your sunrise pic is beautiful...who cares what ISO. :)

  8. Only 3 more to go! That is fantastic. That is something to cling to. You guys are still always present in my prayers. Great positive post chica! I'm glad you are looking at things in that light. HUGS!!

  9. Max and RUby.....Ruby and MAX!!

    I loved this post. You are so so funny, even in the hoosegow.
    I send you virtual hugs.

  10. Very touching! I especially loved the "still being in my jammy's part. Praying that the last few sessions go quickly. Sending a very big hug your way.

  11. That picture of the boys together on Andrew's bed reminds me of the one a while back of the three of them on the couch at your house. I think it might have been from before the diagnosis. It makes me smile to know that brotherly love is brotherly love, no matter how tough the circumstances get. THREE MORE. You guys have come so very far. We're all still rooting for you on the home stretch.


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