"When Gideon realized that it was the Lord’s messenger, he said, 'Oh no! Master, Lord! I have seen the Lord’s messenger face to face!' The Lord said to him, 'You are safe! Do not be afraid! You are not going to die!'"
(This piece of scripture can speak for itself... My words can't compare.)
How can one day feel like ten years? I started this day feeling transfered pain from my little one because I was so fixated on his own agony. It progressed to me imagining my hands were resuscitators as I placed them above his weak heart and we were wheeled into Intensive Care. Then, I handed my baby over to strangers in the operating room. Wait. I shouldn't say that. The fabulous Dr. Downing was our surgeon and I taught his son Austin when he was in seventh grade! That was a comfort. Still. I left him there.
The surgery went well and Gideon now has a port that was inserted for chemotherapy purposes. Don't feel bad if you don't know what that is. I had no clue until I got here and learned about it with my kids using "Porter" the doll. Basically, instead of poking Gideon a trillion times to give blood and to give him his chemo through an IV, this is under his skin and attached to a vein already. It makes drawing blood painless! No more pokes! (Well, for the IV type of chemo and blood draw, that is) Gideon has HAD it with being used as a pin cushion. Instead of wanting the nurses to fall madly in love with him, he gives them the stare down if they come in. He actually used these words, "I don't want another shot! I AM TIRED OF IT!" And I can't blame him! So, the port will alleviate that drama.
Sometimes ending one drama adds another, though. This boy comes out of surgery or any other sleep-induced procedure RAGING. He fights like a three hundred pound man. He hits. He kicks. He flails. He rips off cords, and even the PIN inside of his port! Apparently this is a side-effect for many people, and a nurse says it is usually the most docile who respond this way. All I can say is that I have never sang "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" so many times to calm this child down.
With this procedure, I can safely say that Gideon's honeymoon with the hospital is over. We have resorted to toys and mommy dancing and movies and food to keep that boy entertained.
The steroid he is on is making Gideon morph into someone unlike himself. Again, this almost always happens to all others. Still, I miss that sweet and gentle one. I can still feel him when we cuddle, though. And for the first time since the day began, Gideon SMILED. His first smile was directed at non-other than Derek Wheaton - my early elementary principal and a child whisperer. Derek's calm demeanor and personality radar got to my little guy. I am thankful for that! I just need to remember that while Gideon's meds will be determining his mood, I can choose my own mood each day. I will always choose to turn towards the sun, even if I have to scale a mountain to find it beyond the clouds of this disease. I guess what I'm saying without getting metaphorical is that I have OPTIONS whereas Gideon does not. The drugs are causing his moods.
We had other developments: Tom and I sat in the Chemo Clinic with our nurse, Michelle. She will be our nurse for the entirety of this disease. We LOVE her. She is fantastic! We hope and pray that Gideon's treatment will last the planned 3 year structure. We will need your help for a long time! Thank you for the support we have already been given. I feel your love and prayers. I have said that before, but I need to say it again! It is looking like we will be leaving the hospital this weekend if there are no other complications. We will administer a lot of the chemo at home, and we will also come back to the hospital when Gideon needs blood transfusions and in-house chemo needs (through the spine or through a shot in the muscle).
How do I feel about leaving so soon? Stressed out and afraid! What if I do something wrong? What if Gideon is exposed to a virus that makes him incredibly ill? What if I miss a warning sign? Really, I don't see HOW anyone can have a child with cancer and not be a believer. I can't do this without Him.
So, instead of focusing on the scary stuff, I will look towards the FUN! Brody and Gideon share a room. That can't happen anymore because of the whole germ factor. I thought this may be the case, but Michelle reiterated it. SO. Here it is: WE ARE REDECORATING! I am so excited. It will make this splitting of two best friends and brothers easier and exciting for them. Brody's room will be sports themed and Gideon's will make him feel like he is a pilot for sure. These rooms will be their safe spots to be their own selves. Gideon won't be a chemo patient, he'll be the boy who loves planes. Brody won't be the kid whose brother is sick, but the lover of sports that he is. I want them to feel like they are on a vacation in their own space. I know we should save for other purposes right now, but I know I can do this on a creative budget. If anyone is selling boy furniture, let me know, okay? One of the rooms has my flowery girl furniture from my growing up years. I won't have time to garage sale, but if you are selling something, please let me know. I just want to bring home new happiness, and not just new struggles.