Monday, July 26, 2010

Tender Mercies

Today has been quite a day. Thank goodness I took the time to take a shower!

As I was gathering our things to load into the car for William's morning clinic visit (suitcase-cause we never know, blanket-Will's always cold, cancer notebook-don't leave home without it, laptop-my link to the outside world, etc.), I found a flooded laundry room. Yeah! Just what I wanted to do while trying to get out the door. I sopped up all the water up and moved the washer and dryer to clean underneath them (that did feel a little good to have clean). Then I had to wake up William to get him in the car. The poor guy is wiped out from the chemo, has to wake every four hours in the night to take his nausea medication, and he still throws up every time he eats solids.

At his clinic visit he weighed in at 51 lbs, four pounds less than exactly one week ago. Right before diagnosis he weighed 64 lbs. How's that for an unintentional starvation diet? Highly NOT recommended. The doctors didn't want him to lose more than 10% of his body weight. He's teetering around 20%. Hmm, if I could lose 20% of my body weight...? Yikes, and I have more to give than he does/did. At the clinic, we earned ourselves a couple extra hours of hanging out to get I.V. fluids to increase some of his numbers for magnesium, potassium, etc. and general hydration. The doctors wanted to send him home on I.V. nutrition, but the pharmacist said he must be admitted. So the doctors said, "Let's wait since he'll probably be admitted in the next couple of days with a fever and neutropenia." Do I cheer for that? So William vomited and we earned admittance. Up to the 6th floor once again.

William will receive I.V. nutrition through his Broviac throughout the night so he will sleep through any nausea. Pretty slick, huh? If he tolerates it, we will hopefully be discharged tomorrow and Home Health will come and get us set up at home to give him feedings during the night. These are some of the little things for which I am grateful to my twin sister, Christine, for exposing me to so I don't need to fear. And to a mother who courageously and tirelessly cares for her daughter's many, never-ending medical conditions, I can draw needed strength. Throughout much of this trial I have often recognized small, seemingly insignificant things that have happened in my life that have prepared me and my family for some of the difficulties and life adjustments we are experiencing. Sometimes things are said to me or emailed or written in notes that lighten some burden if only for a needed moment. I refer to these as tender mercies. The prophet Nephi said, "I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he has chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of deliverance." (1 Nephi 1:20) I know my family and I are loved by the Lord and I know he is aware of our joys and heartaches and because of our faith we can become stronger and He will bless us in ways we perhaps can't understand or appreciate until we pass through this test.

We are glad to be in the hospital tonight because it means William can get a needed boost to his weight gaining attempts. William is keeping what little food he's consumed down and is enjoying the pleasures/slumbers of Benedryl. Can I have some of that? We had hopes to be here only one night, but were just told they were unable to prepare his I.V. nutrition in time and will have to wait until tomorrow night to receive it. So we're here another day and night, but for now we have a room to ourselves and I consider that a tender mercy!

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