Its been a while since I’ve done this, and looking back at the last entry I can say I’ve been sort of MIA due to the on going craziness that has consumed my life. I can’t say preparing for a move is easy, it's especially challenging with two small kids, throw in a trip to Florida, packing, hospital visits, and did I mention this was an international move? And with that comes paperwork. Anyways it has been a fun few months, lots of coffee binges, deep breaths, and constantly thinking to myself “what the hell am I doing?” But we made it, we’re here and we’re home.
As I had mentioned we spent most of June/July and August packing and purging. Brinley had her last appointment at the Stollery on august the 26th. She had her monthly dose of chemo with another lumbar puncture and chemo done through her spine. Everything went well, the goodbye to the doctors was a big tough. It’s hard to leave a team that has been more than wonderful to your very sick child. It’s stepping into the unknown that really makes me sick with worry, “will the new team of doctors care for her as well as the first team of doctors? Will they mesh well with her personality? What if she hates them? What if she’s just as terrified as I am?” I cannot begin to describe my anxiety. For the last 9 months I handed my daughter over to the pediatric oncologist and nurses on 4E3 and trusted them with one of my most precious little humans, and said “you make her well, all I can do is comfort her and hold her, but you have the key to her recovery” and now I have to do that over again. It’s not such an easy feeling, and I wish it was.
I remember my first walk through the oncology floor, and the first time I had met Brinley’s team and thinking, “I do not want to meet you, it is not nice to meet you” (harsh I know, but I was in a dark place) and with each visit, I looked forward to seeing them more and more. Dr Desai, Nettie, Wendy, Roxanne, Rea Lee, Leah, Karina and Louis, each one handled Brinley with such ease and love that it was hard to let go and say goodbye. I hope our paths will cross again. I love them because they loved Brin.
We had our first appointment with the Phoenix Children’s hospital 2 weeks ago. I was nervous to say the least, but once I had met Brins new doctor I felt much better, she is a warm caring doctor and Brinley took to her immediately. She was also kind enough to transfer us to the east Children’s hospital in east Mesa, so instead of driving an hour and 20 mins, we only have to drive 20-30 mins. So not only will her treatment be closer, but we wont have to transfer doctors again.
So now we’re in Arizona, and we finally have a house. The last house we were geared up to buy fell through…or we pulled out of the deal due to dealing with crazy sellers. We ended up buying a bank owned home and closing in 3 weeks. It was a nice feeling to have the deal done and a place to call home. Now it needed a lot of work, and I didn’t buy the house because I loved it just the way it was…I bought it because I could see the potential. So far we have painted, installed new lights, had the tile professionally cleaned, and added new carpet throughout. And I have to say, I LOVE IT. I keep smiling and saying “this is our home…this is OUR home” Don’t get me wrong, I loved the house in Edmonton, but we bought it ready to go, the house literally needed nothing. I didn’t have to do much to make it our own, I took it for what it was and went with it. This house we made our own. Yes it’s far out, but I like it, it’s quiet and I have everything I need close by.
In other news Brinley got very sick last week, she took a bit of a turn from being happy and perky to being incredibly lethargic, vomiting, and then came the fever. After a few days of being tired and sick the doctors concluded she probably had the stomach flu. Then once the fever kicked in, I called the clinic and they told me to come in right away. It's strange how my brain automatically goes to, "oh no, is she relapsing?" I mean, the last time we thought she had a "virus" she had cancer...so am I repeating the past? It's such a dark gross place to be, you go into panic mode and it's hard to reel yourself back in. So there we are, sitting in the doctors office waiting for blood work to come back. The good news is that her blood work was just fine, her hemoglobin was down a bit, which explains her being so tired all the time, but everything else was just fine. So from there we prepared for an obvious blood transfusion for the next morning. I have to say, those blood transfusions are better than coffee...one moment Brinley was totally out of the game, and within an hour she was happy and full of energy! What a turn around!!
In other news, Carter got a new dog. He's been begging us for a while to get one of his own, HE wanted to be the master. Over the last month or so, we've been telling him what being a "master" means, and that its not all fun and games, owning a dog comes with huge responsibility. So then came little Lou. Carter named him by himself, and I'm thrilled to say, he totally takes care of him all on his own. He goes outside and cleans up the mess without being asked, he makes sure that Lou doesn't go potty in the house, and constantly plays with him. So far, it's been a great fit for the Pawluk family.
I leave you with some photos, and promise to blog more...after our stuff arrives...and I unpack...*wink* *wink*
|Getting IV fluids after days of vomit that resulted in a fever|
|Carter and Lou|
|weird IVAD port|
|Feeling much better after new blood|