Monday, May 12, 2008

Humbling



I finally made it to Stanford to be with Erica, but according to my mom, today is the most “out-of-it” she’s been for the past week or so, special thanks to the mix of Ativan, Dilaudid, and Benadryl. As previously reported, she has moments of lucidity (I’m talking 30 seconds to a couple of minutes) but then falls back asleep for about 30 minutes.

For those of you who follow the medical speak, her WBC is 1.1 today, HCT is 30.3, PLT is 10K , and the ANC is 450. To translate for everyone else: WOOHOO! Progress! Basically, the docs hope that tomorrow she will be able to leave her room (donning a heavy duty mask of course) and there is even talk of her being able to come home this weekend or early next week. This is contingent upon whether she can swallow food and keep it down long enough to get nutrition. As of today, Erica tried to eat small bites of various foods, but the pain to swallow was too great. On the up side, she didn’t throw anything back up… Her lips are swollen and her mouth still has many sores, but the nurses say it’s getting much better. She is well enough to shower alone and this remains a good sign.

On a personal note, I found today to be difficult for me… I have always been able to handle the blood, the puke, the BMs, etc. I fancied myself a bit of a pro! But today I realized that I don’t really know how to help her anymore… my old tricks don’t work if she’s not awake and since I’m not up on all the daily meds, I feel slightly useless… Our Mom has been here every single day and I think Erica has attached to her now the way she did with me two years ago. Since I came in this afternoon, our Mom was able to get some necessities done (e.g. laundry and a real meal!). However, when Erica would wake up randomly throughout the day, it was our Mom that she called out for… She asked for her repetitively and reminded me of how Mom does things around the room and that she knows where things are, etc. I really felt out of practice and sad that I can’t make her feel better like when we were in Boston… on the up side, when she was more lucid in the evening, we were able to engage more and goof around a bit.

Since I now know what it feels like to rely on blog posts to know what’s happening in E131, I will do my best to report daily. So forgive me now if I’m redundant tomorrow.

Until then… peace.

9 comments:

Jamie Murphy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Abby Wood said...

Yaaaaay! Glad you've arrived, Jaci! And it's amazing that her counts are already climbing-- I thought it would take a few more days. So hurray all around. Sorry she's so out of it-- she's told us how amazing you are as a caretaker, and I have no doubt that you're getting the job done.

Thanks for posting-- her fan club has been anxious :)

Jamie Murphy said...

Jac,
Welcome home sweetie!!! I know you probably feel out of the loop in terms of E's care, but I also know that it has taken a entire team of people to do what you did for two years!!! Over the past 4 months or so Judy, Josh, Bess, Jon, Katie, Abby, myself and countless other folks have cared for Erica and we have all been overwhelmed at some point or another. I can not even begin to tell you how amazing you are.

E, I am so glad to hear that your counts are starting to come back up! I miss you soooooooo much and I will be back there as soon as Jaci leaves.

And yes Jac, I am trying to avoid you ;)

All my love!

J

adam said...

So good to see you and Erica back together, Jaci, and I understand your angst of wanting to do more. Many days I find myself hoping desperately for a smile or one laugh - maybe it is the best thing we can do, and sometimes it feels like the only thing... it is a big thing. What better way to uplift our siblings than by allowing them to laugh at us, even if only for a fleeting moment. Got that, Erica? Make fun of Jaci, however you can - she will love that!

roman said...

great to hear! keep on truckin'!

Anna said...

Hi Jaci!
Thank you for putting up a post, I have been checking every day for news, so it's good to get some. I am glad to hear that things are okay. love,

Clif said...

Jaci to the rescue!

Thanks for updating us. Love the picture.

artineh said...

Hi Erica and Jaci,

So glad to get an update and to see you guys together again. And Jaci, as a girl who has two sisters, I want to assure you that you will always have a special place in Erica's heart. I remember that's how Erica and I first bonded when we met at Oxy... talking about our moms and our sisters :) I'm sure she is thrilled to have you by her side again.

Erica, you look great! I hope you're continuing to feel better and I'm hoping they let you go home very soon. I sent a package. Hope it gets there before they send you home.

love,
artineh

Anonymous said...

E, Jaci, you two supersisters - so good to know the two of you reunited again!
Thanks for the update, Jaci, and thanks for giving a glimpse into your own thoughts. You've been E's greatest angel in her most difficult times, such an admirable source of smile, energy, love and strenght for her - and I'm absolutely sure that within just a few days you'll re-conquer your place and that your wonderful mom will happily share it with you. Lucky Erica to have such an amazing family!

E, am thinking of you non-stop and dream of the day when we'll drink a jugo de melancia together that goes down the throat smoothly with no pain - hopefully sitting on some sunny beach enjoying the sunset and the seagull's lullaby...
Girl, am thinking to come see you end of July, would that work? I'll stay out of any bacteria-danger until then, will pamper myself und eat lots of vegetables and vitamin C to "infect" you with pure health and good vibes... :)
Much love from across the ocean!
Gioia