Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Tough Get Even Tougher

My daughter is pretty incredible.  The bravery and courage she has displayed over the last 7 months just keeps on coming, and this week was no exception.  I'm telling you--it was a rough week.  Roughest in a while--yet just when I think I've seen her at her toughest, she goes and kicks it up a notch--or ten!

A trip to clinic early in the week got Paige a giant bag of platelets complete with an allergic reaction at the end.  A not-so-little hive popped up on her eyelid.  Thankfully, antihistamine meds did the trick.  After some observation time (and no other issues), we headed home for the day.

Our actual clinic day later in the week held even more 'adventure.'  Paige's counts were low, yet not low enough for another transfusion that day.  It is, however, on the agenda for Monday.  Her infection fighting cell count is very low, so she was grounded by her doctors until it starts to climb back up to acceptable levels.  Go figure--we were offered tickets to Friday's One Direction concert and were unable to accept.  Oh well...maybe next time!  This weekend's main goal is avoiding an ER trip.  With counts this low, it would warrant an automatic admission and a couple days' worth of antibiotics.  As much as we would have loved an evening out, we love staying out of the hospital even more!

Throwing another wrench into things, Paige's spinal tap that day did not go as smoothly as the last couple have.  Of course it happened to be the one time I decided to stay in the room.  She was more alert than usual, and the needle was less cooperative.  Not a good combination.  Thankfully, the 'loopy meds' she received helped her forget some of it--sort of wish I would have had some of those!  Paige is still experiencing soreness in her back, yet she has only asked for pain medication a couple of times.  She's trying to forego the meds tonight as well, tough girl that she is.

After the tap was complete, it was chemo time.  In the mix that day was a drug with a higher potential for reaction and thus a longer monitoring period.  This particular one usually sends Paige's anxiety level off the charts--even though she has never experienced an adverse reaction to it.  Maybe the traumatic tap had something to do with it, but Paige was calm throughout that chemo.  She even sent her dad and brother on a food-finding mission.  If she's eating, I know she's going to be just fine!

Our week ended yesterday in the office of an orthopedic specialist.  An exam and x-rays showed Paige's leg fracture is healed.  there was no sign of that fracture on the x-ray.  No need for physical therapy.  No reason to continue with the boot.  Our girl is back to wearing two shoes!  Of course, she has to take it slow and steady as she gets moving again--but, WOW!!!  Healing happened, and it happened much sooner than expected.  What a wonderful way to end such a rough week!  God gets all the glory!


I can give example after example, story upon story that would serve as testimony to Paige's strength, courage, and all-around 'toughness.'  However, she's not the only tough one out there.  Pediatric cancer patients are extremely resilient.  Long days at clinic have given us opportunities to connect with others on similar journeys.  At the heart of every one of those families is a kiddo who is tough--and keeps getting tougher every step of the way.

  • A little one battling a brain tumor--one that has now shrunk to half its original size in just a few months.  Paige loves this little guy's smile and looks forward to seeing him when our clinic days coincide.  His parents also have a strong faith that will not be shaken, and we look forward to sharing weekly updates on our brave kiddos.  There is always a reason to be thankful!
  • A girl several years younger than Paige.  Her cancer relapsed, and she is here from out-of-state for a trial therapy.  On just her second day in town, she was recording a song in the clinic studio.   Paige joined her in a few games of Old Maid while her mom and I got acquainted, sharing stories about our princess warriors.  This girl doesn't let anything slow her down--kind of sounds like another girl I know!

Full of hope for the future, the tough get even tougher.

For it is God who works in you...   Philippians 2:13

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