Saturday, July 3, 2010

Yesterday at the Hospital

Yesterday was our clinic appointment. That's the day when we go in to have Sarah's blood drawn to check her blood cell count levels and get a push of Vincristine, a chemo drug, into her broviac port. I wasn't looking forward to it because I knew her counts were going to be really low, and we don't want to take her anywhere at all on those days, especially a place where there are kids and toys. Of course, in a place where all the kids are in the process of undergoing cancer treatment, there shouldn't be many germs, but still, we brought our own toys...a few books, a hairbrush, a string and beads, and a toy cell phone. I thought we would only be there for a couple hours tops. I also carry around in my head a pretty endless supply of songs to sing together, and that eats up time.

So there we were in the waiting room, chatting with a mom of a little baby going through chemo, singing, stringing beads, and reading the 3 books I brought. Finally I caved and got one of the waiting room books, sterilized it, and read that one together too. We found out that Sarah's counts were so low, she would need a blood transfusion. Oh, fun! Actually, I knew that would be a possibility, but I hadn't planned for it when packing for the day, because of course I was running late. The nurse said we would start the transfusion there in the clinic, then when the clinic closed for the day we would move over to a hospital room. The whole thing would take--4 hours. She said they would get the blood ready and start it soon. It was about 3 o-clock by this time, and we had been there since 1. I thought "soon" meant about 15 minutes. Try an hour and a half.

So, while I was waiting for that 15 minutes to be up so we could start the transfusion, our 4 books, played with beads, played with the cell phone, brushed hair, and sang songs. And Sarah likes the SAME SONGS over and over. I am sure we sang Mahna Mahna from the Muppets 15 times in that hour and a half, her favorite song, Tractor Tractor at least 20, and Shake Hands with a Poor Boy about 10. (It starts off, "I never had much in this world below..." and hearing Sarah sing that is so funny!) That poor mom with the little baby was probably praying silently that they would hurry up and get that blood ready already! Oh yeah, we found something else fun to do--hitting the shiny stars they had hanging around. Sarah thought that was really hilarious. : )

FINALLY, at 4:30 they took us over to the place where they would hook her up. Mercifully they let her play with the little machine that takes your temperature, because I was very very done with singing by this time.

At 6 we were escorted over to the familiar hospital floor that feels sort of like home now ("back to our room" Sarah calls it, although we didn't get the same room we had before,) to finish the transfusion. Somehow I had it in my mind we would be done at 7:30. But I soon found out that we would be there til past 8:30. This time it was a room with a regular bed, but I felt sure that since my girl had not had a nap all day, she would conk out as soon as her head hit the pillow. Uh, Nope. : ) Nothin' doin.

So, we sat on the bed and ate pizza and mashed potatoes, and then we read some more, sang more songs, and then I was done. I laid down on the bed and watched Funniest Home Videos while Sarah amused herself with another thermometer machine until we were finally able to go home.

The most interesting thing about that story is that, even though the day was long and tiring, I really really enjoyed it. I always try to find something to be thankful for in every situation, and in this one it wasn't hard to find. A whole day with my precious girl. What could be better than that? Singing song after song is fun when your audience's face lights up like the sun every time. Her smile and laugh and little voice singing with me are even better than sitting at the beach with a good book, or a day at the mall. I treasure every day I have with my sweet family. I hope you are treasuring yours today!


  1. Oh, you truly inspire me! All that time WAITING at the hospital would have driven me crazy! But you put such a positive spin on it and made it a joyful day. I love that!!

  2. You are doing a wonderful job collecting priceless memories in the midst of the storm. I will be praying for your whole family.

    Thank you for continuing to pray for Abby.