Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Epistle: To Adi, On the Occasion of the Final Day of Active Treatment

Dear Adi,

Before. Note the belly. That's gone now.

Whoa. It's been a long 16 months. Only twice as long as the oncologists told us it would take!

Right after diagnosis, before the port was put in.

I mean, let's not get TOO excited. Sure, today you had your last dose of active treatment chemo, but it's not like the road ahead is going to be easy, or, you know, WITHOUT CHEMO. We've still got those six intrathecals to look forward to, after all. And there's the oral chemo you'll be taking for the next year or so, which, YAY, oral chemo!

Home after the first hospital stay. 

Everywhere Adi goes, Yuval goes. 
But, indeed, there is cause for celebration, because WE FINISHED ACTIVE TREATMENT. That's kind of a big deal, and the weirdest thing is that you're not even here today. You're off having a grand old time in Eilat, with your peeps, 119 kids with cancer and 100 counselors and a whole bunch of support staff making sure your every need is met.
What my kid does on vacation.
Not at all disturbing.

You've been out of school for 16 months. And yet, you've learned an enormous amount. You've learned to deal with situations that are beyond your control. You've learned that on days with abdominal ultrasounds or CTs or intrathecals or any of a host of other tests, you need to be fasting -- and you even understand why. You know the meds you take, in what form, and you know instantly if something has been changed. You know how to share a room with someone else, you know that sometimes we can't go to the playroom, that sometimes you need to throw up, and that soon you'll be better.

So tired. Just want sleep.

Eff this... stuff... is what I think you're trying to say here. 

Because what kid doesn't dream about being the garbage truck man???
You know that soon you'll have surgery to fix your stoma. (I am personally quite excited about that one, because you don't know how to do laundry, so that task falls to me. There's a lot of it.)
You know that soon you'll go back to school. After SIXTEEN MONTHS. This should be... interesting. I think you'll be happy to be back in your misgeret, back to your regularly scheduled program, as it were. We've got a lot of work ahead of us, but you've never been afraid of a little hard work. You may object to it, often loudly, but you've never been afraid of it.

I will walk with my pole BY MYSELF. 

The very fact of your existence at this moment is miraculous. Truly -- medical science can't explain how you survived multiple bouts of septic shock, two bowel perforations and two bowel obstructions, methotrexate toxicity, anaphylaxis brought on by PEG Asparginase, and I'm sure I'm forgetting something else. Amazing how you can lose count of your kid's near death experiences.
As long as there's cake, it's all good. 
Or Belgian waffles. That works, too. 
You are my hero. You and your smile -- you are amazing. I love you. So much.

I love all of these pictures too much to choose one.


persephone said...

Second from the bottom, with you smiling and Adi puckering up, is my favorite favorite favorite. <3