Monday, January 28, 2013

Off to Camp!

To all future bloggers out there:  You know when it's been too long since your last post? When you start getting the emails asking if you are alright out there.  Point taken!

I last posted on Monday, 7 days ago, and we were looking to check into Mott on Wednesday, which we did.  As we had the last time, the chemo was a breeze, and she didn't get sick even once in the hospital.  Amelie really and truly doesn't mind going into the hospital, and how could she?  She only gets poked once the entire time she's there.  She gets 1 on 1 time with Mommy or Daddy, she has all these fun people come visit her, and she gets to watch a ton of Dora/Calliou/Diego.  What's not to like about all of that?  Seriously people!

Of course, more than anything, that's a testament to how we keep all the emotion of what's going on away from Amelie.  A parent told me this week that they couldn't believe how strong Shelley and I were in the face of all of this.  I thought to myself that I really don't remember being given a choice in the matter.  Amelie only knows the emotions we give her.  If we are strong, so is she.  If we are fearful, she'll learn to be fearful too.  

An extra bit of goodness in this round was that they accelerated the chemo regimen.  Instead of waiting 24 hours before starting doses, they moved to 18 hours.  Over the three days, and with the knowledge that we were extra diligent with the at-home IV fluids she's on at night, they let us go super early.  We checked into the hospital on Wednesday morning, and were home on Friday night.

Speaking of Friday, that's also when Anya left for the Special Days Winter Camp.  We had heard about this from Jennie in Child Life at Mott, and checked into it.  It seemed to be a great thing, and they allayed our fears about sending her to a camp by herself.  Anya had no such fears.  None whatsoever.

Grammie and Papa dropped her off on Friday afternoon at the Sheraton in Ann Arbor.  It was a 3+ hour bus ride to an area north of Muskegon, and she was looking forward to the bus ride more than anything else.

So, getting out of the hospital on Friday night, and having Anya gone for camp made for lots of really relaxed play time with Amie.  Not that Anya is bad or anything, but her play pacing is really, really hectic.  Not at all like what Amie's pacing is when she's by herself.  She's been asking to watch us use the bathroom lately, and now she's been asking to spend some private time on the potty with a a certain someone else.

Amie broke into Anya's dress up stuff too, and was enjoying a pair of Yit-Yit's glasses.

She also got to curl up in Mommy and Daddy's bed with Icey and Baby and enjoy some shows.

(I spent the last 15 minutes trying to get the pictures on the blog, but they're semi-protected, so I just dropped the link for those of you who want to check out the camp in progress)

Anya had to be picked up in Ann Arbor on Sunday, so we made a day of it.  We grabbed good food, went shopping in Kerrytown, and then headed to the Sheraton to pick up Anya.  The girls had made a sign for Anya, and it was really cool to see how happy both girls were to see each other.  Shelley and I were an afterthought, which is what we love about the way they play together.

It's been a great week thus far.  Both girls are in high spirits, Shel and I are both rested as we can be.

Speaking of rested, today is a snow-day for me.  I was 45 minutes into the drive into work in the hellacious conditions, but we hadn't called off, so I had to head in.  I got the call near 5:50a, and headed home.  I got there at 6:30a to find everyone waking up.  I requested the right to get some sleep, as I was exhausted and wanted to get a little more rest.  Of course, with the terrible way I treat my body most weeks, I slept for over 4 hours, and woke up to little gremlins planning a surprise for me.

This was on the bedroom door as I emerged.

A little closer.

One more.

So there ya go.  A massive post about what's going on.  Amelie has no eyebrows left, no eyelashes either.  It gives her a very serious look on her face, somehow.  All part of the process, I guess.  :)

Shelley is working on a massive blog post that details what she goes through, with a ton of pictures, on a day at the hospital.  Her mom came up on 1/11 and took all the pictures, and we now have them on our home hard drive to work with.  Expect that within a few days, for those of you who want to know more about the thrice weekly blood draws and transfusions.

Hope all is well with each and every one of you!