Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Small Steps Back

So the last post that I did was titled "things are on the up and up"..... well, can I take that back?. About two hours after I posted that, Abbey started to get sick and we have had some rough days here since Saturday evening.    

We spent the whole day today at the clinic and we (myself, the doctors and nurses) are trying to figure out what is causing some of these unusual side effects right now in the phase.  Some of the ways that she's feeling would be normal if she was in the middle of the steroids or if she just came off them, or if she had just had chemo, but none of that is the case now. She's actually on a break right now so she should be starting to feel better, not worse.  

So back to what's going on...  Saturday night Jim and Jacob headed out to church and when they left, things here were fine and I didn't foresee any issues with them being gone for the night.  Soon after they walked out the door Abbey started throwing up.  For some reason when any of my kids throw up, I freeze right in my tracks.  I seriously cannot move a muscle in my body. You'd think I'd run to get something for them to throw up in or move things so they don't get hit, but no, I just stand there, stare and say "you're o.k. honey" about 30 times.  Well on Saturday she was sitting on her very favorite pink blanket on the couch.  Thankfully the pink blanket was laid out on top of the couch so it was a little more manageable when cleaning it up. After getting everything out of her system I finally was able to move again and quick locked Micah in Abbey's room.  I then got Abbey cleaned up enough to get a bath.  I then spent 45 minutes getting the blanket clean enough to be able to throw in the washing machine.  I was sure she would feel better after getting all that out, but the rest of the evening didn't get better.  She laid in her bed from 6:30p.m. until the following morning at 9:30a.m.  Heartbreaking to say the least!  Not what a three year old should be doing and the tears flowed that night as I watched my baby be so sick in her bed.

The good news is that she hasn't thrown up since.  The not so good news is that she still feels pretty yucky.  Some of her other complaints that have been on and off since Saturday are headaches, neck aches, pain in her eyes, and stomach pain both inside her belly and outside to the touch.  What's odd is that she seems to have taken a step back these last couple days and we would expect her to start getting stronger right now.  She overall has been just laying on the couch much of these last days and is pretty miserable.  It's been so sad.  

I know we are at the end of the worst.  Once we start back up with the phase, we have 2 weeks and then onto maintenance.  I know in my head that we are so close.  That we've come so far and that much of the worst is behind us.  But my heart is tired of it all.  It just wants the worst to already be behind us.  My heart is in maintenance, yet my baby still has two more intense weeks of chemo that she has to get through.  If I sound like I can go from being so encouraged and feeling great (like in my last post) to feeling pretty low and discouraged... it's true.  There have been many times throughout these last six months where things can change quickly and my heart goes from being happy to being weak.  I know my God is always the same.  Regardless of if we're having a good day or rough day, He is still in control of ALL things.  I still trust Him and know that none of this is a surprise to Him.  I am just tired and ready to be past this part of the journey.  So please be patient with me and pray for my strength to be renewed.

Please pray that her eye pain/pressure would stop.  It gets severe at times and all she can do is scream.  Please pray for her body to get stronger and for her to start to feel better overall.  For her tummy pain to go away completely and for her low grade fever to just go away and never come back.  And please pray for wisdom for the doctors as they will decide Thursday whether to push ahead and start the second part of this phase, or to wait one more week to give her body more time to recover.  We so appreciate your prayers during these next couple weeks.  Thank you!


Kristen Foushee said...

I am new to following your blog and want you to know I am praying for you, Abbey, and the rest of your family every single day. May God give you and Abbey more strength this week and keep you both steady for the rest of this journey.

Alyson said...

My family and I are still praying for you guys!!!




Anonymous said...

My heart just broke reading your post. I know it is difficult to focus on the future when your little girl is hurting so much today, but remember - two more weeks and then Abbey will be in maintenance...and Springtime, Summertime, vacations, and FUN memories! I've not been in your shoes, but as a mom I know you just want all the pain to stop and all the yuckyness to go away. I pray that Abbey feels better (especially her eye pain would stop), regains her strength, and gets through the next few weeks without any problems.

Annapolis, MD

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear that Abbey has had a rough few days. I will pray that she will recover quickly and especially for strength and peace of mind for you. I am sure it is hard to see her feeling good one minute and bad the next.
Erin Farley

Melissa said...

This isn't anything you can't handle! You ARE doing it, you need to remember that, you are making it through one breath at a time. You can and will do this Shelley, you will, you are her mom, and it may not be perfect at times, but you will find a way to navigate this.

And yes this is the cancer battle, just when you are almost there, just when everything seems to be going great, it doesn't. Here we are finally done with chemo and Josh's numbers are bottoming out and will go lower, he has unexplainable intestinal trouble, they are worried about him getting infected. You'd think I'd be done with all of this, done with the worry, done with the "what now?" You really need to read that "Welcome to Amsterdam" because it's the truth, even when you do get to maintenance, you are still going to be in amsterdam, even when she is all done you are still going to be in amsterdam and not italy like you planned, as the story goes. Life is never going to be the way you planned, it's always going to be different, there are always going to be bumps in the road when you had hoped for a break.

What's killing you now, what kills me at times, is that pining that hanging on to the hope that you could get back to normal or a semblance of it, that if we just make it to this stage things will be different, things will be better. . .we can finally get to Italy as the story goes. You can't do this to yourself, where you are is beautiful, you have your little girl there right next to you, things may seem dark right now and unfair and wrong because this was supposed to be a break. Things don't go according to plan, they go where they are supposed to and you are along for the ride. Don't let this be a set back, I know you all needed the break, but you have to realize some of the pain you are feeling isn't being scared or overwhelmed, it's mourning the loss of that normal or pseudo-normal you were hoping for this week. You wanted it so bad, and that hope left, there is an emptiness you are grieving over.

Somebody seems to think you are tough and can handle whatever is thrown at you, you have to believe that too. Mourn the loss of normal, and then jump, or crawl i need be, back in the thick of it because you don't know what lies ahead, cherish the moments, even the puking painful sad ones. Fill your heart with love, don't let there be room for sorrow or doubt, look at her eyes, look past the worry you have, just look at her and love her, that's all you have to do, be her mommy.

When all else fails, call a friend, cry nonsensically, laugh at yourself, use a lot of tissues, and realize, underneath it all, you're human, not a superhero, it's okay to be flawed.

Amber said...

Praying for you.

Greers said...

praying for you sweet friend!

Aggie said...


You do not have to apologize for your feelings. I can only imagine what a roller coaster this must be. Some days are up and some are so very down. As you said so perfectly, thankfully God is always the same, and I am so thankful that your faith in Him is unwavering in all circumstances.

Scripture makes it clear that we will in fact encounter all types of trials. Just because we expect them and know that God is in complete control doesn't mean that they won't be painful and confusing at times. I think that your feelings sound perfectly normal...in fact I think that you seem to be handling things bettter than may moms would in this situation because you are trusting Him.

Just cling to Him completely and He will carry you through!

We will continue to pray for Abbey (and you too).

Aggie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Pifer's said...

I am praying sweetie, really really really hard!!!!

Anonymous said...

I have been and will continue to lift sweet Abby up in prayer many times daily.

dana said...

You do what you need to, there is no right way to walk this journey...there are highs and lows and the tears and smiles come too. As I was reading my heart was aching as I know your heart my friend, I know that you want to be so done with this and I pray that you are so very soon!

It is a devastating thing to watch your little one sick and know that there is more to come...I am praying. Praying for your heart...I will be patient with you. You are walking a path that is heartbreaking and yet our Saviour meets us there and carries us through.

I am praying that He meets you tonight and gives you rest. That He would carry you tomorrow and on Thursday at clinic. Praying for strength for encouragement for your heart.

Praying for Abbey too...may she start feeling better. That all these symptoms will cease and she will get relief and her body can rest. My heart aches for her...laying her at Jesus' feet and asking that He heal her of whatever is causing all of this.

Continue on my friend...you are strong and you will get through...us mommy's of little cancer fighters do. Know you are not alone.


Beth said...

My heart is so heavy for you, for Abbey!

I have typed and erased what I want to say to you now 3 times. There simply are no words to take away what you are going through, what little Abbey is going through!

Yes, lean on God, let Him wrap His arms around all of you! Find comfort in His promise!

Thinking of you and sending prayers!!

The Eadle Family said...

Hi, I am new around here and wanted to say I will pray for sweet Abbey. I hope she feels better soon! No child should have to endure cancer.

Shawna from Texas said...

Poor, sweet baby! I just came across your blog and my heart is happy for your beautiful children, but just breaks for all that Abbey is going through. My God bless precious Abbey and heal her soon!

Anonymous said...

I will continue to pray for Abbey and the rest of the family. You do not walk this path alone. Remember you are forever in His Grip!

With prayers,