About Us

Our family of 6 (dad Adam, mom Sherry, big sister Abby and little brothers Isaac and Brady -- who was born on December 14, 2010) joined the ranks of pediatric cancer fighters when our 4-year old son Logan was diagnosed with a dangerous and highly malignant form of brain cancer in mid-August 2010. Logan's cancer journey began abruptly on Sunday, August 15, when his right eye suddenly turned inward during dinner. Twenty-four hours later, we were checking into Children's Hospital Oakland and finding out that life sometimes takes you places you'd never, ever imagine yourself going.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Logan Update: Monday 8/23/10

Some days, it's hard to organize my thoughts enough to give much of an update, but I still feel compelled to write something if only for my own records. Today was an okay day. Logan continued to move toward recovery from surgery. The morning started off rocky with lots of crankiness and lots of whining, but as the afternoon and evening wore on, his mood improved. We even had some sweet moments, with me saying 'I love you, Logan' and him replying in kind. It was probably the most meaningful child-to-mom I love you moment I've ever experienced. I'd been longing to hear that since the surgery last Friday.

A box of cookies arrived from Adam's Aunt Julie and her family (thank you!) as did a card from Gramps and Gigi. There was a car show featuring several Dodge Vipers held this afternoon in the courtyard, and the kids were all invited down to check it out. Since Logan isn't allowed to get up he couldn't go; given his adoration of all things automotive - seriously, this boy adores cars and can name just about every make out there and a lot of different models - I was glad that he didn't hear the PA announcements inviting children to attend. Adam went with his brother Eric and returned with photos of some of the cars, and a super sweet maroon Viper model that features flashing lights and audio. It's really amazing. I was so touched by it; when the announcements mentioned there were toys for the kids, I'd envisioned a little Matchbox-like car, not this huge, interactive muscle car. Sometimes the generosity of others is absolutely overwhelming.

In the food department, Logan did better with eating, though he still preferred a sampler-like menu and didn't eat more than a few bites of anything. At lunch time, he had a few bites of his hot dog (with ketchup - he was very specific about including ketchup). Then at dinner, he had a few bites of cheese pizza, some french fries (with ketchup, of course) and chocolate cake, as well as a collection of different rainbow colored juices - cranberry, orange and apple. It was hard to get him to drink much of anything, though. We know he was thirsty because the doctor dropped his IV fluids, but he just didn't want to drink. It was hard to watch him drool and refuse to swallow. He's also having a hard time coping with wearing a catheter and a diaper. He's been potty trained for a long while now, and I think it hurts his sense of pride and independence to be told that he should just poop in a diaper or pee in bed, even though we all reassure him that it's truly okay. It'll be nice when he's well enough to remove the catheter and some of the tubes that are keeping him bed-bound.

Another big thing keeping him in bed is his drain. None of this is technical; it was all explained in layman's terms, but I'm so fried most of the time that I just don't remember precise details about much of anything. Anyway, he has a tube in his head that drains excess cerebrospinal fluid from his brain. There's this completely archaic-looking device that's used to adjust the pressure in his head; it's gradually been increased over the past few days to allow his brain to return to normal pressurization. Once he gets to the point where pressurization is normal, he'll have a quick MRI to check how his brain is coping, and then hopefully the drain will be removed.

The last big item keeping him bed-bound are the muscles in his neck. We were told that muscles typically dislike being manipulated, and take a while to rebound from surgery. We had a visit from a Physical Therapist today and he had a lot of trouble holding his head up.

As for me, I'm still just dealing. One of the big frustrations I have is what I'm calling The Water Issue. Since I've had trouble with contractions, I'm supposed to be drinking as much water as I can manage throughout each day to try to keep them at bay. Unfortunately, the ICU rules say that no one but patients can eat or drink in the unit, so although some shifts don't care if I drink and bring me pitchers of water, others are less understanding and scold me and Adam for breaking the rules. I know it's a small thing, but it makes me sad and angry every time I have to explain my situation to yet another charge nurse. And I hate being scolded. I am, by nature, pretty legalistic, so it already bothers me that I'm being forced to break the rules as it is. So it hurts and shames me every time someone tells me to stop drinking my water or asks me to leave until I'm finished. It's awkward and I don't like awkward.

Otherwise, I'm tired. Very, very tired. As I sat in the cafeteria this afternoon, I looked out the big glass window at the blue sky and the apartments across the street and just... sat. It's hard. I feel like I'm internally begging for reprieve; for all of this to just be resolved, for Logan to be healthy again tomorrow and for life to be back to normal again. I know, though, that we're probably embarking on a long journey. I don't want it to be long and I don't want it to be painful, but it feels like we're in a vortex and being sucked in that direction. No matter how much I try to thrash and pull in a different direction, I just keep losing my footing. I'm stubborn like everyone else so I don't like what's happening, but I know we have no choice but to submit and roll with it.

As we get closer to getting the pathology results, I can feel my stress level ratcheting up a few notches. I'm scared and worried. And I'm frustrated that since my body is reacting badly to stress, I'm not free to be sad and to allow myself to truly feel all of the emotions that any mom in my position is entitled to feel. I don't understand it at all; I'm not going down the 'why me' road because I know there's probably not an answer to that right now, but it doesn't stop me from wondering about it all in my weaker moments.

Well, that's enough for now. Thank you again for your prayers and please keep at it.

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