It was a rough start to the day and it took a lot of thought to start to see the good in it. To see the moments that you can look back on and say “that was what makes life worth living”. I was going to write this earlier today and told Carolynn I couldn’t come up with anything good to write. Her response was, wait and see what happens. It wasn’t that nothing funny or important happened today (actually a lot of good happened) it was that there seemed to be so many more bad things clouding my view. Doubt is a powerful thing. It creeps up on you and when it gets hold of you it’s so hard to break free. That’s when you need someone there to say it’s time to Believe. Until then doubt grows and crawls through every part of your body. However to believe is so much more powerful. Think about it, your having a bad day, believe it will get better, you lost your dog, believe it will come back. Your child is given a horrible diagnosis, believe that she will heal with her strength, your strength, the doctor, and god’s strength. Doubt is inevitable and it seems to rear it’s ugly head the first chance it gets. You need to accept that, know it will be there and be ready to basically say, “I believe, I have no doubt.”
As usual, we had to administer the Chemo. It has come to my attention that neither Carolynn or I really want to put this poison into our child. So at 6:00a.m. it’s a mad dash to scream “NOT IT” for the second day in a row I lost and had to give it to The Gabster. We headed again through the tunnels under the streets that connect CHOP and HUP to radiation. From the moment we got there you could tell it didn’t feel right. We had a new anesthesiologist with the bedside manner of a cactus. When we took her into the room with the big green machine for the radiation you could tell she was terrified. She hasn’t really talked a lot since the Biopsy but she screamed” I WANT TO GO BACK TO MY ROOM” ( you know she was terrified because most of the day Gabby says very little and isn’t speaking in full sentences) The man giving her the sedative basically laid hoses on her head while she was awake and grabbed her to move her to the other table before she was truly asleep yet. I had to basically run out of the hospital, Carolynn joined me and we both cried sitting on a dirty bench in Philadelphia while strangers radiated our child.
We had a visit from Mrs. Hilborn , which livened up Gabby, At one point I asked Gabby who her favorite teacher was and she pointed to Mrs. Hilborn. She also laughed and smiled while Mrs. Hilborn and her imagined they were both at the beach and made imaginary sand castles.
I could do a whole page on this and most likely will soon. It hurts, It’s horrible. As I watched Gabby working with the therapists crying “I want to go back to my room” I couldn’t help thinking this was the little girl that not to long ago was doing her kindergarten screening, walking, jumping, counting, and drawing.
Now it seems like she is relearning that, to watch someone that has changed so greatly so quickly rips at you. She stares at you as if to say” why won’t you stop this? Please Help Dad! But you have to stay strong, Have to BELIEVE that this will help get your little girl back.
The Title of this update?
The Talk: as a father of three girls this is something I’ve dreaded. How will I ever have the “Talk “ with my girls. The talk I’m referring to is the birds and the bees or whatever little name you have for it. However this wasn’t that type of talk I heard or took any part inThis evening. The talk I heard was while I was sitting by the window watching Carolynn and Gabby sitting on the bed. This was the YUCKIE talk.
The Yuckie talk
I listened as Gabby told Carolynn there were two Yuckies out of her head. Carolynn corrected her and said we had gone for treatment three times so three yuckies must be gone. Gabby was quiet for a bit and then asked if there were Five Yuckies to get out then she asked if it was over now? I started crying to myself afraid Gabby would see it. Carolynn explained there were a lot there and even when we went home we would still be coming back to fight them. She let Gabby know she needs to be strong and we would all fight them together. Gabby quietly replied “ I can’t fight them I will be sleeping” What else is there to say besides” Baby you can fight them and we will be by your side the whole way. The whole world will be by your side “
As I said at the beginning of this it took a while to clear the doubt, but I did. So let’s go over the list of funny and good things that happened here at CHOP in GABBYS life today.
- 4:00am. Our nurse proudly told us Gabby had stooled. Not sure why we needed to know this so early even now, but after we clinked champagne glasses with her we drifted back to sleep.
- Gabby laughed as she imagined going to the beach and building sand castles with Mrs. Hilborn
- She painted my pinky with purple nail polish ( I let her know tomorrow she has to finish another one)
- She held and enjoyed a yellow lollipop ( I made sure to run down and buy all the rest from the gift shop, sorry other kids)
- Standing behind Carolynn watching Gabby sit on her lap as they watched Snow White. Truly seeing a little girl love and need her mother.
- She sat with Carolynn and I at the Ronald McDonald House and slowly placed the fork in her mouth with food on it, and was able to lift her milk herself and drink it.
- With our help she told us she would try to use the potty ( however the deal for this was we would have to let her sleep naked if she did)
One day down and many more to go, At times it was very dark, but when the day was over it was a good one because she’s sleeping right in front of me, hopefully dreaming of a beach and princesses. And as I go to sleep hopefully I’ll dream of my little princess Gabriella on the beach as well.