A No News Update
A few people have asked me how Ana’s doing this week and it suddenly occurred to me that I haven’t updated the blog in a while. A month, actually. There really hasn’t been anything new to report. We haven’t heard anything from Dr. Yamashiro since we saw him after Ana’s scan at the end of September and, to be quite frank, I don’t mind the radio silence.
Ana did get labs last week which all came back good. Her liver enzymes are normal and her CBC (blood count) was also normal. In fact, Dr. Martinez (her hepatologist) discontinued one of her medications, so she’s back down to three meds.
We’re all falling back into a pattern of normalcy that feels comfortable and easy, but also a little precarious. At this point it’s been 27 months since Ana’s initial diagnosis and it’s impossible for me not to consider a reprieve as anything other than temporary. It’s hard to describe if you haven’t experienced it – either because someone very close to you has had cancer and then remission and then more cancer, or because you’ve been through yourself.
I’m not walking around mired in depression, but I’m also not overly optimistic. I’m not even somewhere in between. I feel..thoughtful, watchful, and somewhat ungrounded. The best way I know to get my bearings is to stick with a routine – which I’ve been mostly successful at doing – work, writing, exercise (except not in the last week or two), laundry on Sundays, etc. But I’m prone to gazing off into space and wondering what’s coming next.
People often say to me, “I don’t know how you do it. I can’t imagine.” And when I hear his, I feel compelled to explain – to help them imagine. Maybe it’s the story teller in me. What is it like when you are constantly worried about your child’s health? How can you stand all that she’s been through? And to this I say…she has amazed me at every turn. Yes she’s been through a lot and it may not be over, but she has grown so strong this last year. And so beautiful. Treatment has been hard, even brutal, but it’s extended her life and given her many months of health. It sucks that we’re always waiting for the other shoe to fall (and damn..how many shoes does this fucking beast have, anyway?)
But on the other hand, I’ve become aware of how boring, mundane moments are incredibly precious. I mean, I’ve never been this aware. It’s like I’m watching memories happen as they happen – framing them in my mind in a way that will hopefully help them stick. I’ve never been good at remembering things, but I think that’s because I’ve never paid as much attention to my life – and the lives of my children – as I’ve done in the last two years.
And that’s kind of what’s happening right now – absolutely nothing – except living life. I’m sure it will be raining shoes before long and I’ll be back to post an update when that happens. In the meantime, I leave you with a little picture of Ana sent to me by a parent from her school who happened to be on hand when she was outside during recess (thanks Jodi).