Today was Brinley's monthly chemo treatment at the hospital, her blood tests came back decent, not amazing, but she's trucking along and that's all I need. This kid handles treatment like a champ. She's almost excited to go, bouncing off the walls giddy. Mainly because when she hears that we're going to the hospital, she figures it'll be a day of crafts, poke prizes and getting spoiled by the staff. She's well aware of the routine of pokes, chemo, questions, and physicals, but the prizes and crafts out shine all of those things. She sits well for her IVAD access, doesn't flinch or frail about, she just takes it on the chin and moves forward. I've said it many times before, I'm in awe of this little girl. She could seriously teach me a lesson or two in acceptance.
It's no surprise to anyone now that I hate hospital days. I loathe them. I try every morning to wake up and smile, prep Brinley with magic cream (numbing cream), grab my coffee,head out the door, and just keep positive...but I fail miserably. It starts on the drive in, my legs start to get jittery, almost numb and noodley, I'm happy to be sitting and driving because if I was standing I may fall. As I get closer to the hospital and feeling moves up my body. My stomach does flips and turns, my heart starts to race and I have to take deep breaths. I hate this routine. Then I feel this lump of sad in my throat, like I can't choke it down, try as a I may, it hits my eyes. I try to blink away some of the tears, try glancing off in another direction, because maybe if I see something on the side of the road, I will be distracted enough to forget how sad this drive makes me. It never works. A few tears manage to always find their way out. I wipe them away before the kids catch on. It's no surprise that the time we leave the hospital I want to lay down and sleep for the rest of the day. It kind of leaves you in a fog. Sometimes I find myself thinking that maybe front line treatment was easier to deal with because you don't forget that dreading feeling, you're completely aware that your life is anything but normal, you see weekly visits keep you "in check" with your reality. But once you move to maintenance, (and yes it's a HUGE lovely exciting deal) but you forget your position a little, the feelings of helplessness evade you for a month, and you kind of forget about it. Out of sight out of mind....but then you have to go back to that place, the sad/helpless/depressing/overwhelming place of pediatric oncology.
So that's what I'm feeling today, heavy right? There's sometimes when I can't turn my head off, I get so blogged down with my thoughts that I can't shut off. This has helped today. Next month Brin will have surgery again, I can only try and prepare myself for these feelings to be magnified a bit more.