Day 5


Today has just had disaster written all over it, so if we make it out from this day without anything completely terrible happening, I’ll be incredibly relieved.  So far it has been one of those days where everything, everything has gone wrong.  Many of the things have been little, neglible things that on a normal day would rate a “meh, oh well” reaction but today are all adding themselves up to produce one seriously irritating day.

As I mentioned in the previous post, I spent last night at home because I wanted to go to a yoga class.  In hindsight, this was an incredibly stupid decision to do this on the day before transplant.  I had taken a load of stuff home to do laundry and organize, and was shooting to be at the yoga studio by 8:00.  I left the hospital just after six, and due to some wicked rain and traffic, arrived home at 7:00 with just enough time to eat a bowl of oatmeal (pretty much the only thing in the house) and throw my things together before leaving for yoga.  The class was good, but it was a hot yoga class, and I think I failed to drink enough water.  I have a problem with hydration, in that I never feel thirsty, so I actually will forget to drink anything for say, a whole day, and then fall apart and wonder what’s wrong with me.  Anyway, hot yoga is very detoxifying, and I guess because I haven’t done it in so long, was hungry, and didn’t drink enough, I actually felt awful when it was over.  I went home and scrounged a weird meal from the cupboards, threw Gavin’s laundry on and tried to go to sleep.

My day started at 4:30 in the morning when I woke up, wondering why I was awake.  It was then I heard a noise in the hall, fear shot through me, and I thought, “oh great, someone’s in the house! Just what I need.”  I heard the noise again, and realized with relief and annoyance that  it was actually a leak from the ceiling.  I’ll just pretend I didn’t hear it, I thought, and go back to sleep.  At 5:00 I woke up and heard the same noise, but in the bedroom this time.  We have an old and leaky house that we’ve been neglecting, and I guess yesterday’s rain was a bit too much for it.  I got up and stumbled around the house looking for towels and buckets and tried to fix the problem and go back to sleep. When I woke up I felt like I’d been doing shots of Jagermeister until 4:00 am.  I wanted to try to get to the hospital as early as possible because I knew that Craig would not be able to get his coffee and would be dying for one.  As quickly as I could I packed up the things we needed for the next stage and got in the car.

I was also dying for a coffee and thought my headache could have been due in part to caffeine withdrawal, plus detox. I managed to get to the hospital by 10:00,  after fighting traffic again all the way back, did the Starbucks thing and was SO looking forward to drinking that coffee. I kept thinking, “I can’t wait to have this coffee.” Of course, I walked into the anteroom of Gavin’s isolation pod and promptly dropped my coffee on the floor, and then burst into tears.  “It’s just a coffee, sweetheart,” one of the PSAs said consolingly.  (Um, yeah, I’m crying because I dropped my coffee.) Please! Anyway, I went in and said good morning, was talking to Gavin and trying to have a bit of my sandwich when Gavin dropped a plastic bag on the floor, slipped on it, fell over and banged the back of his head before I could stop him.  AAAAAGH! Tears flowed on both our parts.  My first thought was “internal bleeding” but the nurse quickly reassured me that his platelet count is okay today.

As I struggled to get it together, I cuddled Gavin on my lap for a little while.  I then realized his diaper had leaked all over my lap.  His pee is still quite toxic and so should be avoided at all costs.  Great.  I have to say that Craig laughed long and hard at me when he came back with a fresh coffee.  Glad I could provide some comic relief.  I then had to return to the car to scrounge up some pants that weren’t peed on and could only find clean pj pants.  Oh well, fashion is the least of my concerns right now.

Once back upstairs we began the process of getting Gavin into the “clean” room.  We washed him in antibacterial soap, gowned up in yellow gowns and removed shoes and scrubbed in before heading in there.  The one thing I neglected to take care of yesterday was the washing of Monkey and Minnow.  Gavin has been cranky and out of sorts today, no surprise there, and started begging for Monkey.  We were allowed to bring Monkey in in a ziploc but couldn’t take him out, which Gavin was not pleased about.  It was starting to be naptime, and so we decided that I would take care of the rest of the stuff and get Monkey and Minnow washed.  I raced around the hospital,taking our stuff to the car, pushing a stroller full of crap that kept falling out, being terse to nurses who are just trying to be nice to me, and struggling not to just constantly weep.

However, I knew that the transplant would be happening soon and didn’t want to miss it.  But I also knew that he would be begging for M and M when he woke up.  Which is why Gavin is currently undergoing a stem-cell transplant whilst I wait for M and M to finish drying!! I can’t believe it.  The timing of today has been completely and totally off, and I couldn’t feel more like a parental failure for not being there.

Craig says the transplant has gone okay so far and Gavin is sleeping through it. The next couple of weeks are going to be a long haul.

8 Responses to “Day 5”

  1. Geez that is one tough day. Of course you’re so strong and you’ll make it through but that doesn’t make it any less stressful at the time. I know we’ve only met once but we have a lot of communal friends and I think about you guys a lot. If you need some laundry or cleaning help or grocery shopping please please please please let me know and I’d be happy to lend a hand. Even meals delivered to the hospital can be done. Whatever you may need!
    Stay strong and we all know that one day soon Gavin will be through this and recovering and so will you and your family.

  2. Karen says:

    Oh Erica

    Good husband, good family and especially “Bubby” and in the end you still have to struggle alone. You are a fantastic parent (as is Craig). These are the times I wish I lived closer to the city so I could do things like laundry etc. It seems when I do get in I’m involved with Grandma, but it does make me feel guilty that I can’t help you more.This isn’t about me, however, it’s about YOU. Yoga will help you be strong; think good thoughts and breathe deeply. One day at a time. Love and hugs.
    Aunt Karen

  3. Monica says:

    Put failure right out of your head. Really. Its not true. It just doesn’t apply and will do you no good. Along with all the light and love being sent your way, remember to be good to yourself even if all that means is telling yourself that you are doing and being the best Mom and the best Erica you know how to be. That is true and it applies. What if all that disaster gave Craig a laugh that he desperately needed more than you know …

    Much love,


  4. Sarah says:

    Today was one of those control/alt/delete now reboot kind of days. I am right up there with Monica- you are the hardest working, most committed, most loving mom I can imagine. Maybe try the next yoga class in a cool room 😉

    love to Craig and Beanie.

  5. Susannah says:

    A horrible day through and through. I am so sorry. Wish I could take it away. Hang in there. Kisses to Bean

  6. erica says:

    Thank you everyone for your kind words. So very appreciated!

  7. Karen says:

    Oh- what an awful day! I’m totally feeling for all of you. You are the strongest and most dedicated mom I know so please don’t be hard on yourself!

    Thinking about you lots and sending much love your way.

  8. Amanda says:

    This reminds me of the story “The terrible, horrible no good very bad day”. so glad you could share this and have everyone who is always thinking of you send you support. Why didnt I think to offer laundry help to you? Please let me know if I can do some for you!
    A xo

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