We made it through another treatment and another weekend.
I’m just the observer, but it’s clear this weekend was a bit tougher than after treatment No. 1. She was unable to find quick relief for the nausea, especially on Thursday and Friday.
And that’s the worst, really. She was tired all weekend, but she was only upset when the nausea wouldn’t go away and she had used all the meds she had been prescribed. That’s a helpless feeling.
But when it did go away, Jenny rested. She slept a lot.
She worked Friday (the day after chemo), but only after sleeping from 2:30 p.m. Thursday till 6:30 a.m. Friday. That’s 16 hours by my math.
She was exhausted on Friday and went to bed pretty much as soon as she got home that afternoon.
On Saturday, she was resting and sleeping most of the day. She did eat some and spent a little time on the couch.
But she stayed awake for a bulk of Sunday. She read ‘Charlotte’s Web’ to Brynlee. Then they watched the movie together.
(Brynlee likes to hang out in the room when she’s awake. She’s a good water-getter.)
Sunday afternoon, she sat on the porch and played UNO with Tyler.
(I think she lets him win.)
Sunday evening, she helped Hayden with his science project homework by working on the PowerPoint with him.
(If Jenny wants to forget that she’s a cancer patient, she only needs to find Hayden.)
When she’s awake, she’s fighting a headache and nausea — and pulling her hair out, quite literally. The hair will be gone very soon. This is just me talking, but I think not having hair at all will be much better than pulling out handfuls at a time.
A lot of people have asked about the kids and how they’ve dealt with this. And really, they seem to be pretty resilient. We talk often and openly about what to expect and what’s happening. They don’t seem scared of it, probably because we talk about it a lot.
- Hayden (12) doesn’t say too much. As we were shooting baskets outside Friday (he was grounded from the X-Box, so hanging with Dad wasn’t too bad), I mentioned how her hair will be gone soon. He said it didn’t bother him, but that ‘I can’t have any friends over … I don’t want to have to explain it to everyone.‘ We’ll see how long that lasts. He did previously request that Jenny wear her wig when friends were over, so that no big surprise. Hayden also joked with Jenny on Saturday that maybe she was faking the cancer to ‘get out of work early and go to bed all day.‘ Don’t know where he gets his sense of humor. Joking about it is good, and he thought he was pretty funny with that line. I did too.
- Tyler (8) is more of a worrier, but he seems to be adjusting well. He probably talks the most about it. And he brings it up in front of others more than the other kids. On Sunday, he and a friend from down the street were in our room asking for a treat. As I shooed them out, Tyler was saying, ‘Just because she has cancer… ” only because he wanted his friend to ask more about it. A week or so ago, he said he was thinking about shaving his head. And that’s really something because he refuses to get his hair cut short ‘like Dad’s.’ Jenny discouraged him from cutting his hair, but it’s clearly been on his mind. And the other night, he was asking how Jenny was feeling and then said, just like a grown-up, “Is she getting the best treatment in the state?” Yes, Tyler, she is. He really helps me, though, because he keeps Brynlee busy.
- Brynlee (5) just wants to help. She likes getting water and loves to give big hugs. And she liked making cinnamon rolls “for Mommy” (yeah right … I picked the breakfast) on Sunday morning. And when Jenny is awake, she likes sitting in bed with her. And there’s no doubt that she’ll be the most fascinated by Jenny’s look when her hair is gone. As you might remember, Brynlee really struggled last Fall with the decision of whether to take the chemo meds or not if it was going to make her hair fall out. She told Jenny not to take the medicine until Jenny explained that she might not get better. “Never, ever get better?” It was only under that realization that Brynlee said it was OK. She’s accepted it now. She hasn’t volunteered to shave her head, but she’ll be working with Jenny and telling her which hats, scarves and wigs will be best. But this weekend, Brynlee spent the last two days playing non-stop with Tyler, so she’s super happy.