I’m happy to report that Ana seems to be in a lot less pain as of now. The attending physician gave her a stronger laxative and that did the trick. Her abdomen is a lot less distended and she even let me touch it (even the slightest touch had been excruciating). This is making it much easier for her to move around, get in and out of bed and just feel a little more like herself.
She had to have her original IV removed today which is a pretty simple procedure (just take the tape off and out it comes), but Ana was terrified of it hurting and she had a really bad couple of hours. It wasn’t just the I.V. It was everything finally hitting home. I was taking a nap with Emily at the Ronald McDonald House at the time and she was alone with Jim. He’s much more level headed and patient than I am in situations like that, so I’m really glad that she had him there. She eventually calmed down enough to let the nurse remove the I.V. As it happened, I was with her at the time since Jim had just left to get dinner with Emily and she did get upset but was able to calm down and let the nurse do his job. I’m so proud of her!
Needles are an ongoing source of stress for Ana (and me). She needs labs drawn every day, and she also needs that anti-clotting agent administered twice a day until discharge. The shot goes in her arm and it stings for about a minute, during which time she cries in pain. I had thought the central line meant she wouldn’t need to get the shots anymore, but tonight’s nurse (Melissa) said that wasn’t the case. She’d still need to get it. It was at this point that I burst into tears which, strangely, seemed to calm Ana down and she actually comforted me. I’m still really sad that she has to deal with that shot twice a day.
On the logistical, life-goes-on front, school is starting soon which means Ana will need tutoring. The hospital has a program which will work with her existing school (hello High Meadow folks!) to get lessons and work to her, then she’d work with the tutor to get things done. I filled out the paperwork for that today. I said to Ana, “well, it’s a little like home schooling – think of it as a new experience.”
Her response was, “Yeah, it’s kind of like school with needles.”
I love this kid.