Thursday, August 28, 2008

36 months...

That’s how long it’s been since we finished Joshua’s cancer treatment. That’s 3 years…
or 1,095 days…or 26,280 hours…or 1,576,800 minutes…but who’s counting?

36 months ago Josh was being given his last round of chemotherapy in Emanuel Children’s Hospital when he went into anaphylactic shock due to a platelet transfusion. We almost lost him that day. I remember scooping his limp, seemingly lifeless body up into my arms praying silently while his doctor calmly went to work. He was revived. Amazingly, while that was happening, the cement foundation for Josh’s House in the Trees was just being poured. Our backyard was full of loving, talented volunteers who were willingly being directed by Josh’s father.

36 months ago, when his last dose of chemotherapy was given and his first set of "end of treatment" scans were taken, we were told it looked like the cancer had "possibly" spread to his lungs. We were given two choices: either go home, live your life and come back in a month for more scans, or stay in the hospital and endure more intense scans in order to see if it was indeed cancer.

We went home. Later on his scans were clear.

Josh has had 12 sets of scans and then some since his first set of "post treatment" scans. Today he had his 36 months post treatment scans. Tomorrow he has an echocardiogram and we meet with his oncologist.

36 months and I’m waiting to hear...once again...all is clear…no cancer…

Go ahead and breathe…

8-29-08...We got the ALL CLEAR!!!

I am breathing again...

Friday, August 8, 2008

Just an observation I find interesting...

When Josh was in treatment, a dear friend of ours gave him a cute stuffed gorilla. Josh immediately named him “King Louie”. I think he was inspired by the Jungle Book movie.

Anyway, King Louie was with Josh during EVERY hospital stay. Josh frequently gave King Louie shots . Josh put an IV in King Louie’s hand complete with gauze and tape. King Louie wore a neck brace 24/7 just like Josh did for his year of treatment. Once treatment was over King Louie sat on Josh’s bed still wearing a neck brace, still with an IV in his hand. Josh rarely sleeps in his bed as he prefers to sleep in his bed in his House in the Trees, so King Louie and all the other animals in his room had been forgotten…until recently.

I’ve been in the mood to do some deep cleaning. Believe me, this is such a rare phenomenon, that when it strikes me, I go for it! One project I had decided on was to convert the “sewing” loft near Josh’s bedroom into a “Lego/toy” loft for him and I enlisted his help. All of the completed Lego pieces he had put together over the years were removed from his room and put on display on the shelves of the loft. Carefully, he set them up in their proper groups, sometimes displaying action. This left room for him to move all of his stuffed animals on his bed to an empty shelf area in his room. I put him in charge of moving and displaying them how he wanted.

Today, I walked into Josh’s room to put something away, when I noticed King Louie. For the first time ever, King Louie was sitting there without a neck brace on; instead he sports a bright red bow tie! I took a closer look and discovered he no longer has an IV in his hand either! Instead his hand was clean and furry with a small remaining piece of tape, which I quickly removed. I patted King Louie on the head and smiled to myself.

I’m not sure, but I could have sworn King Louie smiled back at me.