Jasmine has been home for a month. When we brought her home she needed a wheelchair because she was so weak she couldn’t take more than a few wobbly steps.
Today she is at Callaway Park with her school classmates!
The first few days at home were unnerving since Jasmine was vomiting for no discernible reason. A headache almost brought us back to the hospital but the pain stopped after another episode of vomiting. We were all on a knife’s edge for days.
Anita arrived from Louisiana and everything calmed down (and was a lot more fun!). Jasmine did NOT get Eli’s chicken pox. She and her mom left my house and moved home and things slowly took on some rhythm.
Jasmine was being seen by Home Care nurses daily until her antibiotics were finished. Their regular visits were a great comfort to us because they could be an extra set of eyes to make sure all was well.
Jasmine gets stronger and stronger each day. The physiotherapist recommended some exercises, none of which she did of course, but on her latest visit she remarked that Jasmine was doing “physio” by living her normal “kid” life! She jumps on the trampoline, jogs between our houses, has friends over for play dates, walks the dog, and goes up and down the stairs at home hundreds of times.
All this time I keep thinking “someone” needs to let faraway friends know how great Jasmine is doing. But I am so emotionally shaky and physically tired that all I could do was write a short report thinking I would soon have the time and energy to be more forthcoming.
I still can’t face the box of thank you cards that need to be written and sent. The reason I need a BOX for thank you cards is because there are SO MANY people who have been so wonderful that it takes a box to hold all the cards! But every time I look at it I feel a bit sick because it catapults me back to the gut-wrenching hospital days when we were trying to help Jasmine endure the suffering of the cure. To the wonderful people who did (and DO) generous acts of kindness for us: You are not forgotten!
This past weekend, Jasmine and Eli came to family camp with Gerry and me. Jasmine swam in the pool, played ping pong, and hung out at the playground and fire pit. She had a hearty appetite and enjoyed all the camp meals as well as the snacks we brought along.
Yesterday I drove Jasmine to her school so she could make the draw for the winner of another fundraiser the school did for her. I was fine! Happy! Excited Jasmine would see her friends and be back at the school she loves! We walked into the office and a teacher met us and told us how much money they had raised for Jasmine and I lost it.
I could NOT get a grip on my emotions. I couldn’t take photos. I tried to video Jasmine calling the prize
winner but was so shaky I cut off the video after a few seconds. Finally I just sat down in a chair and mopped my eyes while Christine chatted with the teachers and Jasmine hung out with friends.
I was a wreck for the remainder of the day.
But what set me off wasn’t sadness, it was overwhelming gratitude and joy! In the past month since Jasmine’s release I have lost a writing/speaking colleague (my age) to a heart attack and another friend has had a recurrence of cancer and started chemo this week. I am reminded every day how blessed we are!
These next two years, while joyous beyond compare because we have Jasmine with us, will have a small shadow ever lurking. AML is a difficult cancer to cure and one in four people have a relapse in the first two years. Of course, we pray that Jasmine is in the majority, the three in four who do not relapse.
Also, Christine has her own journey of healing which she has embarked on already. After being a ROCK for Jasmine for four months, she has some residual scars that need addressing. As do I. My out-of-control emotions at the school yesterday revealed I still have a ways to go to find rest.
But for those who have blessed us, prayed for us, overwhelmed us with kindness beyond description, thank you! Our prayers have been answered and Jasmine is thriving! God has shone His light through you all and we have had our load lightened and our hearts encouraged.