Monday, March 9, 2015

7 Months Cancer Free!

Kennedy's first dance competition - as a "Little Monster"

Such a whirlwind!  We’ve had so much fun living a crazy life; I completely passed the 6-month mark without any update.  So I’m a month late….worse things have happened ;)

Over the past 7 months, we celebrated Kennedy being cancer free with a good old-fashioned block party.  Then we went on an incredible Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World.  Kennedy started 2nd grade, joined a competitive dance group and is now preparing for a talent show.

Things that used to stress me out like accessing her port; fevers, nausea and missing meds are a thing of the past.  Now I am stressed if I have the right shoes or pink hair spray packed for a dance competition.  Can you believe I no longer sanitize everyone who comes near her????

It feels good to be a normal mom (is there such thing???) but I really need to up my game. I feel so lost but I’m catching on!  We still go back for blood-work and check-ups every month to make sure there are no cancer blasts but I no longer worry, I’m confident she kicked it for good.

Block Party and a "kicked cancer's butt" cake
Our fabulous Doctors – Ricarchito Manera and Ellen Sarvita moved over to Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn in December to lead pediatric oncology/hematology; leaving us lost at clinic.  We intended to follow them there right away but the thought of being in a state-of-the-art, high-traffic center that treats even more kids with cancer comes with a feeling of dread.  I don’t want to meet more families with cancer, knowing many will not make it.  My heart can’t handle losing any more. I like our small little bubble at Loyola where we are healthy and done.  On the other hand, these doctors saved her life and our hearts belong with them.  It is a very tough decision that we still need to make.
Our home at Give Kids the World

So back to the good stuff…

Our buddy Mickey Mouse with Auntie and Grandma
The Make A Wish trip was incredible.  We stayed at Give Kids the World – an amazing village all run by volunteers dedicated to children with life-threatening conditions.  There was nightly entertainment, pools, a mini-golf course, arcade and daily parties - a dream come true for kids.

Make-A-Wish also included a dolphin experience at Discovery Cove and Kennedy had a special pass that got her (all of us) to the front of the line at both Disney World and Universal Studios.  We were treated like royalty. 

When Kennedy was asked what she would do if she could ever come back, her answer was “volunteer at Give Kids the World”.  I truly expected her to say “visit one of the theme parks again" or "go on such and such ride” but I had her pegged wrong.  Our kid has heart!

Being Wizards at Hogwarts
That’s all for now.  Check back again in 6 months (or maybe a year).  Cheers!