On June 1, 2010 our two year old, "Little Air Bear," was diagnosed with Childhood Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) Type M7. After enduring 146 days at Primary Children's Medical Center, Erin is now in remission and living a full life at home with our family. Her strong will and constant happy smile is an inspiration to us all. Through our difficult circumstances we found great strength and peace in our Savior, Jesus Christ. Thank you for checking in on us.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

December

It's been awhile, but I'm checking back in here.  We are doing well, we are healthy and happy.  The last 6 months have been crazy for our family with the addition of a new baby, a new job for my husband, a move to a new city, and spending 4 months in limbo as we waited to get into our new home.  We are thankful to all be together in our own home - finally! 

This time of year always brings happy and anxious feelings.  I love Christmastime.  I love being together as a family and enjoying the holidays with all the wonderful music and activities.  This time is also so very dear to us because on Dec. 14th marks the anniversary of Erin finishing her cancer treatment.  Dec. 14, 2012 will be her TWO year anniversary of coming home from treatment for the last time.

Erin's cancer is something that I just will never forget.  It has gotten easier, much much easier, but going through something so stressful and scary still makes my heart ache.  After looking back, I see that I've probably struggled with some depression and post traumatic stress from this experience.  I'm so thankful for my family and friends who have buoyed me up without knowing I was struggling.  And, I am especially thankful to my wonderful husband who has been by my side through it all.

Just after Erin finished treatment 2 years ago I got a journal specifically for writing down all of the wonderful blessings and miracles I saw during Erin's treatment.  I spent several days writing in it.  It was very difficult to write down the tender things, but it was very therapeutic for me and I believe it helped me to cope with what I'd been through.  I have kept the journal in my drawer, but I couldn't bring myself to open it up for the last two years.  I didn't want to re-live any of those emotions.

After moving and sort of re-starting my life I've been able to open up some of the old wounds and 2 nights ago I read through what I had written.  I want to share just a few:

"In the beginning I consciously asked myself what my attitude would be.  How am I going to react to what is coming.  I made the decision to always be positive.  Always."

"I made the decision to be kind to the staff.  Even if they messed up.  I was not going to get angry at anyone.  I wanted to have a thankful, grateful attitude amidst the anguish of a child suffering with cancer."

"My spouse!  My companion!  I was extremely thankful that we were strong together.  I am so grateful we had so many similar reactions.  I am glad he didn't flip out, get angry, depressed, or reclusive.  We both went hand in hand, with positive attitudes.  We pulled each other upwards through the trial."

"Some said that this experience would bring John and I closer together.  I heard some say the opposite.  It doesn't just happen like "wow, we are closer."  We had to work extra hard - harder than before.  That work brought us closer."

Erin has her two year follow-up appointment just a few days before Christmas.  Of course I am antsy, but I don't really have cause to worry.  Until then....

3 comments:

  1. We're only 6 months past the end of Spencer's treatment, but I loved how this post articulated much of what I've been feeling too. I especially was surprised at how stressful the post-treatment phase has been. I'm sure that I had some PTSD in those first few months as well and it makes me sad that we only ever feel a guarded joy with each clean check-up. Thank you for your blog....it was and still remains an inspiration to us.

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  2. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?

    Thanks,

    Cameron

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