Monday, August 27, 2012
Nearing the End
At our last visit the doctor pulled out the road map, the last page, to show me what was left, one more round of vin cristine (chemo) and one more round of his steroids. Dr. Dreyers was very distinguished with her short spiky hair cut and her high heels you never saw her without. She’s only been Yousuf’s doctor a few times over the passed few years but I believe her to be the most upbeat and exciting doctor. Her involvement in Periwinkle Foundation and the camp has proven her to be one of the most sincere doctors, right a long with Dr. Margolin. I have been blessed to have such wonderful doctors at Texas Children’s. Of course, nothing but smiles and a huge sigh of relief filled the tiny doctors office. It was a happy occasion just knowing that the end was right around the corner. Though I feel happy I also feel my levels of anxiety rising. Nearing the end is making me reminisce the beginning and the long bumpy road behind us. I almost feel the same worry I had in the very beginning. Yousuf’s sickness created a whole knew life for me, a whole new purpose. All the hospital visits, the needle sticks, the kicking and screaming - it became so much a part of me. Yes, it was sad and I felt so much pain every time Yousuf felt pain, or was afraid but it became who I am to be the one to feel the pain a long with him. I was the guard to keep the nurses safe from Yousuf’s kicks. I was the hand he could squeeze to reassure him I was still there at times I was unable to hold him. I became used to scanning his blood results: hemoglobin, anc, platelets; and memorize the numbers. I would compare it to the last visits, question and analyze what possible reasons there could have been that it got higher or lower. I’ve had to check medicine bottles on a consistent basis to make sure we had enough until Yousuf’s next visit. There were times when Yousuf would choke on some of the medicines and spit them back up, from the horrible taste, so we run out before the next visit. I would estimate, in my head, a week from his round of chemo to know when his counts would drop. My brain was in constant action with what Yousuf could or couldn’t do, why he didn’t eat very much, and why he was having a temper tantrum. Now, despite it being great news, a joy, a comfort, I’m feeling afraid, confused and lost. I feel as though I have been this jail bird locked away for three years. Yes, it’s made me reevaluate my life, become better and grow, but it has also defined who I am -as a person, a mother. The prisoner, when released, has waited years to be free but once it has been granted feels a struggle to redefine themselves. They definitely don’t want to be who they were before and have been dreaming of who they’ll be next but struggle with the transition as soon as it rises. I’m having the same feeling as I did when I had to let Yousuf’s hands go and just let him walk. I stopped looking through the eyes of an average mother when Yousuf was 3 ½ years old. How will I just be an average mom but still be an extraordinary one? What will I do every two weeks? What medicine will I spoon feed or 7 year old will I cradle after surgeries? Who I will be now? The doctor pulled out that last page of Yousuf’s road map and after all these years it’s finally come to an end. I’m looking forward to the new road to go down, a much happier one, a much greater one… and pray that wherever the road takes us the journey will always make me better.