First, let me start this out with “Gabriel’s doing awesome.” We have truly been so blessed with his health and progress.
We are two weeks away from him getting his central line/Broviac out. This my friends is worthy of five exclamation points!!!!! For those of you who have not experienced a Broviac line, this is a huge step forward in his treatment. For us it means a lot. First, no more weekly blood draws. Second, no more weekly dressing changes. Third, no more daily flushes. Fourth, no more almost guaranteed hospitalizations if he gets a fever, even if for some reason his counts are low, because the fear of a blood infection isn’t there due to the absence of the central line.
Yes, there are some downsides. We won’t be doing weekly blood draws, we’ll do monthly, which means we’re going to be in the dark about where his counts are at – and we’ve gotten pretty accustomed to knowing that information. And, Gabe’s going to be getting pokes, real pokes, for every Chemo treatment and every blood draw.
However, the upsides are just too much, besides all the stuff just related to the maintenance of the line, Gabriel will be able to go swimming, take baths, get in our hot tub, and do all sorts of things like that, things he hasn’t been able to do for the past year and half. It’s amazing how little things can mean so much.
Outside of that, there hasn’t been a whole lot of news to report. We’ve been hunkered down for the past few weeks. Gabe’s been having fun doing his Cub Scouts activities. Chet’s a running fool. And, slowly, ever so slowly life is beginning to feel a bit more normal and there are moments where you almost forget that you’re still living with cancer.
If you haven’t seen this video yet, it’s awesome. It makes me just cry, tears of understanding, compassion, pain, joy, empathy, sorrow, all in a single moment. But, again, it is just awesome.
You know, cancer makes you stronger. Whether you’re the one actually dealing with the physical disease, or whether you’re the loved one sharing the journey.
Today, Chet and I found out a dear friend has just been diagnosed with cancer. It’s a cousin to leukemia, and man it just hurts deep in the gut. The pain is just too deep to describe and there’s no way to express the emotions associated with knowing another person you know and love has to deal with such a crazy disease.
We shared with Gabriel our friend’s diagnosis. Man, the kid is absolutely astonishing, empathetic, and incredible. He started crying. Today he got a stress relief squeezer thing. Gabe was so frustrated that through gritted teeth he asks me for the squeezer. I dig it out of his bag and hand it to him. He starts squeezing it as hard and he can, and then throws it across the room in anger.
He is such an amazing person. I hope he never looses that empathy, compassion and just real nature. It makes him into an absolutely awesome soul to be around.
We’re all stronger from this experience. Our most fervent prayers go out to our friend and we ask that you pray for his health and prognosis too.