I lay next to my sweet four year old wondering how her little mind is processing what is going on. Sweet thing fell asleep with me snuggling her close as she cried because she wanted to watch more of her barbie movie... It was already 11, and I knew she needed her rest too, but my heart hurt as I knew she was also crying for other reasons.
So many people have commented on how much they admire my strength as we start this long road. My friends, that is not my strength. It is yours. Your prayers are like calming medicine to my soul. It is something I find hard to describe. When I feel consumed with anxiety and fear, the moment I say a simple prayer my breathing relaxes, my shaking hands stop, and it is as though I am warmed from the inside out. I know the only reason I am not crying in despair all day long is because of the numerous prayers being offered upon my family and I.
The Holy Ghost delivers them and I feel them, literally feel them.
Yesterday (Thursday) was a good day. Tenley did great throughout the night as her first dose of chemo ran through her little body. As the nurse hooked her up at 10 pm, I didn't know whether to burst into tears, or feel the gratitude of modern day medicine. Such mixed emotions with every single thing.
I want to document the Hard Things we have accomplished so far...
- Hearing the diagnosis.
Very hard... learning the unbelievable is happening to your helpless child was like a slow motion punch to the stomach, but we did it. Slowly, I am adapting to the cancer lingo. The doctors avoided that word along with the "L" word (leukemia) until they were certain. It is becoming easier to say.
- Surgery to receive her picc line (actually is called a Broviak line) as well as getting a spinal tap.
For the doctors this was no big deal, they do it all the time. For us it was a very big deal. It was surgery. The doctors and nurses were kind with their words. One nurse as she was describing the procedure said, "so she is just getting a line in..." She then corrected herself and said, "I am so sorry, it is not a just to you... I understand it is a big deal, and sometimes we forget that because we see it done all the time." As they gave Tenley some medicine to make her sleepy before they took her into the O.R., I told her to be brave and that even though Mommy and Daddy couldn't be with her, Grandpa and other angels would be right by her side. Brave she was... she did great and hasn't bothered with her new little cords.
- First round of chemo.
I stayed the night with her and she slept so well. The nurse had to add some new routines to checking her vitals. Eye drops, and diaper changes every 3-4 hours. As well as the regular checking her temperature, listening to her heart, and getting her blood pressure. Diaper changes are now a little more work.... gloves on, cotton balls added, ointment, and of course the diaper itself. I feel it has been such a blessing that she has been sleeping so well. She hasn't ever been the best sleeper, and I can usually count on her waking up once or twice a night for a bottle. Since being admitted that hasn't been the case. It could just be because she really is tired, but I know her angels are helping her get the rest she needs.
These three Hard Things I can now check of our list! I know we will have many more along the way, but through prayers, scriptures, love, laughter, and most importantly through Him...
We Can Do Hard Things.