Arriving back at the hospital felt like a weight off. She was okay. Well.. for lack of better words I suppose. There she was laying in bed, playing a color by numbers game on the Ipad her uncle gave her. I was able to breath for what felt like the first time since I left the night before.
We spent most of the day lounging around in the hospital bed. I put on some cartoons as we curled up together, her multi tasking between the tablet and the screen while I secretly take in every inch of her perfection. We talked to a few nurses and doctors about how she was feeling and spoke with the radiation specialist on the plan for treatment to be commencing Feb.8, the fitting for the shell they use to ensure she doesn’t move during treatment being done on the 6th. Janaya was diagnosed right before the weekend, so it was to be a quiet next couple of days…
My older sister brought my niece over to the hospital late in the afternoon so Janaya and Skyla could play for a while in the play room. After every thing, an ounce of ‘normalcy’ goes a long way for a child. Was nice to see Janaya smile, watch her be her. Building with the blocks, staging fights between animals and dinosaurs. Almost makes you forget the non-stop echo inside your head. We seen a few other visitors and overall it was a pretty laid back day. My mother and younger sister showed up while my niece was still there and my younger sister wanted to show off a new dance she made up with her friend, which Janaya joined in on and was a joy to watch. The excursion, however, had caused increased blood flow in the brain prompting a headache from pressure, ending the evening fairly quickly. Though she enjoyed it immensely and we got a beautiful video out of it, it was off to bed for us. That night was my night to spend with her (her father and I were alternating nights) and so I slept in bed with Janaya while Jayte slept on the visitor bed next to us. Good news was, this would be the last headache caused by the tumor for the next foreseeable future thanks to the dexamethasone steroid she started. This was also her final night spent sleeping in a hospital bed for the next little while.
Saturday, February 3 we got a gift from the neurosurgeon. He came into the room and asked Janaya how she was feeling. We told her about the headache the night before, that it went away after she rested and that she was feeling great. Based off that, he uttered 8 simply words that would mean the world to me…
“How would you like to go home tonight?”.
A smile shot across her face with excitement as she shouted “yes please!” and off he went to set us up with medication for the evening. After he left the room and we started packing up, Janaya looked at me and said “I am so happy I could cry”. I gave her a hug and a kiss on the forehead and after gathering everything together and receiving her medications, off we went home.
On the way, we stopped at Chapters where I was only planning on grabbing a few things for Janaya. After seeing her joy and excitement build, the mother in me got carried away thinking it was MAX $200 however going up to the till and seeing we rang up an almost $600 bill, I had to (emotionally) get Janaya to pick a few things out of the pile. It was quite embarrassing and I felt terrible having gotten Janaya all excited about everything… In that moment I wanted to give her the world. I wanted to buy her anything and everything just to see that smile. Reality can be a hard slap sometimes.
First thing she did when she walked in the door was find our 3 cats and give each one a big hug. She crawled around on the floor under the dining room table and gave them each kisses after freaking them out with her loud squeely cat-mom voice. We had made plans with Janaya’s bestfriend to go to the Rec Room later that night, so we decided to play some video games while we waited. I really needed to do the cat litter, so Jayte and Janaya played a bit while I got that taken care of. I remember hearing them yelling and laughing downstairs, then a few moments later I hear Jayte coming upstairs with the sniffles… Reality settling in that moments like this need to be cherished… He joined me in the cat room, sat on the floor next to me with his arms wrapped around me, and there we cried together for a few moments until we heard Janaya coming to see what was taking so long. We sucked back our tears, told her I needed help, finished up the cat litter and we all went downstairs.
Heading to the Rec Room, Janaya was pumped! She was talking about which games she wanted to play and what she wanted to eat the restaurant they have there. After arriving and meeting up with Janayas best friend, she was off to play! All was going well, she loved the racing games and the roller coaster simulator. That was until she was playing basketball and one bounced the wrong way, flying towards Janaya and unfortunately bonking her right on her nose… She was trying to suck back the tears as best she could until I took her to the bathroom and she burst into tears saying “I don’t want to go back to the hospital”. I asked her where the headache was, she pointed to her temples and I assured her that the headache wasn’t caused by the ‘booger’, therefore she didn’t need to go back. We were still going home. She nodded her head, let the last few tears roll down her cheeks, put her head on my shoulder and said “okay mommy. Let’s go home.. I just want to go home.” So we got our jackets, walked to the car with her still in my arms and headed home.
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She slept so good that night, as if she hadn’t slept in days. She snored, kicked me a couple times and even let me know she loved me with a good love slap to the face. She IS her mothers daughter after all. I missed sleeping with her… She hadn’t slept in my bed since before Jay and I got together upon a respectful agreement between myself and Janayas father, but when I got the diagnosis… She hasn’t slept alone since. I missed sleeping with her. The way her eyes flutter when she dreams, her mile long eyelashes, the small smile she makes sometimes with the lightest ‘sigh’ as if letting me know it is a good dream. She usually ends up sleeping sideways at some point in the night, her feet across my stomach and her fingers finding mine. I love sleeping with her, and I dread the day I can’t anymore…
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The next day we needed to get back to the hospital by noon, so we wanted to knock off something that was on the original bucket list. Build a bear! So off we trekked to West Edmonton Mall at 10am, stopping in at Jungle Jims for breakfast and meeting up with Janayas bestfriend of 7 years to go make their own stuffed animal together. Janaya picked out Vulpix, Jaelyn picked out Eevee. They recorded each others voices to be placed inside, decided on a scent, had them stuffed and dressed them. Vulpix got a fabulous new Darth Vader suit and Eevee some cozy new pokeball jammies. After some hugs and a quick visit to Uncle Trevor to draw a good luck picture for his anniversary trip, we were on our way back to the hospital.
Sunday wasn’t an eventful day once we got back to the hospital. There was a big problem with not enough beds and a lot of sick kids so when we got back all of our stuff was moved which was a big shock, but understandable. Won’t lie, I was a bit upset in the moment however there are more sick kids out there than just my own so.. Water under the bridge. We moved rooms a couple times until settling into one they assured would be the final move. A short while after arriving into the new room, the doctor came in to tell us we were free to go home again and our room would be held. Happily, that beaming smile spread across her face again and said
And home we went.
As always, thank you for following my blog. Your support is immensely appreciated.
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** Date the post was written was changed to allow posts to show in order **
** Originally posted March 18 **