Gaby's Story
November 13 – 19, 2006

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Monday November 13, 2006

Gaby's face was quite red this morning when she got up. We went for her 19th proton treatment and mentioned our concern about this problem to the nurse. They said this type of redness normally occurs in patients receiving proton in the head and neck areas and aren't concerned about it. They changed the type of tape they use to hold her eyes shut in hopes this will help reduce the redness. I guess, we'll see if that helps with the problem and talk to the doctor later in the week if the area continues to get worse.
After her treatment, we went home for a bit more to eat and then off to the Moonridge Animal Park in Big Bear with Grandma and Grandpa Mel. Gaby really enjoyed seeing all the animals at the Zoo and picking up a couple of 'stuffed' friends (Rocky & Flowers) at the gift shop with her birthday money from Great Grandma and Grandpa Elias. Gaby had a few 'episodes' today and a rather large fit on the way home but was more like her normal self by the time we got home.
She wasn't crazy about the idea of going out to eat but after some persuading she agreed to go as long as we went to Arby's. She ordered the chicken she wanted but decided she was full after only a bite or two and it took forever to get her to finish.
When we got home, she was happy to hear a message from Claire on the voicemail and was sorry she missed her call. Dad was concerned about her lack of eating today so he gave her a quick feed through her tube before she went to bed.

 
 

Tuesday November 14, 2006

Gaby didn't have a great sleep last night and kept Dad up most of the night playing Kelly Clarkson over and over and over on her cd player. She said her throat is feeling scratchy now but is mostly ok. It's the carbonated drinks that give her the biggest trouble so she is going to try and avoid them and stick to her flavoured water instead. Her proton treatment went well again today and we made it out of the hospital by 10:30. Gaby woke from her treatment in a much better mood than yesterday and asked if we could go to the mall. After a quick stop at home to get Gaby something to eat we went to her clinic appointment where she had blood work done and we got a prescription for a solution she can gargle with to help with her 'scratchy sore throat'.
Once finished at the clinic we went to the mall to hang out for a few hours then out to a buffet where she picked at some dinner and desserts.
At home, Dad collected a message from the doctor saying her counts are good so she is good to go for her big dose of chemo tomorrow and an overnight stay at the hospital. Then she talked to Mom for a while before watching a movie with Grandma & Grandpa and let Grandma put her to bed and read her a story.

 
 

Wednesday November 15, 2006

Sorry for the delay in getting the updates to you. Gaby was in the hospital for two days then Mom came for a visit.
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Gaby woke up in the middle of the night and turned Kelly Clarkson on again much to the chagrin of Dad. Nothing against Kelly, just can't sleep with music playing in the background.
We said goodbye to Grandma and Grandpa Mel this morning before heading off to the hospital for her proton treatment and chemo. The redness isn't as pronounced as it has been the last couple of days but is covering a larger area of her face. We'll have to ask the doctor if there is something else we can put on the burns the next time we see him. She woke from anesthesia in a better mood than Dad's seen in a while and by noon we were in her room upstairs in the oncology ward ready to get her big dose of chemo.
She had a bit of lunch, watched some TV then Dad and her went for a walk through the hospital (Gaby rode on her IV pole) while waiting for her chemo to come. Once her chemo started she began feeling very tired and didn't want to eat the dinner they sent up (couldn't stand the smell) so she ate Fruit Loops, crackers and some Strawberry/Banana juice instead.
By late afternoon she didn't want to do anything but lay in bed and watch movies until she fell asleep at 10:00. She was still in good spirits when she started to fall asleep but we're expecting she'll have a tough night.

 
 

Thursday November 16, 2006

Thankfully, Gaby had a good night. This is the first time she's hasn't been sick throughout the night when getting cyclophosphamide. She was still very tired this morning and couldn't wait to get to her proton treatment to be put to sleep. Gaby still asked for Dad to get her the usual morning donut for when she wakes up so he picked one up but isn't sure she'll be in the mood to eat it when she wakes up. As expected, Gaby woke in recovery looking for her donut but was only able to get down a few bites before putting it back in the bag.
We got back to the oncology ward by 10:30 and Gaby laid around for the next two hours hoping to muster enough energy to go to the kids Thanksgiving party in the proton department. By 12:30 she said she was prepared to go but ran into a smell in her room she didn't like and got sick. We stuck around the room for another 20 minutes before Gaby felt well enough to try making her way to the party. Success! She had a couple of scary moments when passing near the cafeteria but made it to the party. We weren't there long before she started asking to go back to her room. Then an artist came up to draw a caricature of her and her mood changed dramatically. She made it through another 30 minutes before heading back upstairs.
When we got back to Gaby's room, we were told that she would have to be in the hospital until 5:00 to make sure she is properly hydrated before we leave so Dad went and got some prescriptions filled while Gaby played a game and watched another movie. The time passed by pretty quickly but by 4:45 Gaby was getting very cranky and wanted to get out of there.
When we got home Gaby was still uninterested in eating anything and was very tired so Dad got her ready for bed (after a quick chat with Mom) and hooked her up to the feeding machine. She's pretty excited to see Mom tomorrow, hope she's feeling up to the trip to the airport after her treatment and doctor visit in the AM.

 
 

Friday November 17, 2006

Only 5 more treatments to go after today! We met with the doctor and he said she is doing well. Gaby has only 2 more treatments to go in this cycle then 3 more concentrated treatments on the area where the tumour began.
Her eyes are still pretty red and the skin around them is a bit raw and peeling but she isn't complaining much and feels the pain is still tolerable so she won't use the mouth rinse they prescribed for her yet.
After the hospital, we picked up Mom at the Ontario airport just before 1pm. Gaby and Dad were very excited to see her. We stopped in at the Ontario Mall on the way home (too much traffic on the freeway) then went to El Torito for something to eat. Gaby did not eat very well so when we got home we hooked her up to the feeding machine and sat around getting caught up. Mom brought the article in the newspaper about Claire being fire chief for the day. Gaby thought that was very cool and was happy to be kept up to date on the happenings around home.
Called home to talk to the boys then chatted with them and Uncle Rodney online for a while. Mom and Gaby hung out together for a bit getting some much needed snuggle time before bed.

 
 

Saturday November 18, 2006

Gaby slept in today (only until 8:30). Good thing, she needs the rest.
We took her to Denny's for a breakfast of "Alien Pancakes" and bacon after getting all her morning maintenance out of the way.
After breakfast we went the Victoria Garden's Mall that everyone in the proton room was telling us about. Gaby visited Santa and was amazed by the 30 foot Christmas tree in the court yard there. Gaby asked how people here can celebrate Christmas when there is no snow or rain, just always sun. The Christmas decorations and the warm weather did seem an odd combination, but Gaby enjoyed the Christmas music and different shops they had there. We picked up a punching bag (Bozo the clown) for Gaby, so she can have something to take her frustrations out on rather than just Dad. She loves it.
We found a Red Robin close to the mall for dinner. Gaby was very excited to go to a familiar restaurant, but barely ate any of her dinner so when we got home we had to hook her back up to the feeding machine. We think this is going to have to be a daily event from now on.
While she was hooked up, we watched a movie then Mom put Gaby to bed around 9:30 and her and Gaby chatted and snuggled until 10:00.

 
 

Sunday November 19, 2006

Gaby was able to sleep until 8:30 again today then she jumped into bed with Mom for a short while before getting ready for the day. Mom finished packing up and we got Gaby's morning maintenance done then went to the mall and had something to eat before taking Mom to the airport. Missing her already.
Gaby was acting pretty cranky today. She's pretty upset that Mom has to leave so soon and is making it known by acting out.
She didn't feel like eating much again tonight and had to be hooked up to the machine again. She did snack on some peanuts and some eggnog but didn't want much more than that.
Gaby's eyes are very red and cracked on her eyelids and her throat is bothering her more. Her right eyelid began to bleed a little this afternoon but by bedtime the lid had softened up some and wasn't looking so rough. We'll have to bring it to the nurses attention tomorrow morning before her treatment. Hopefully, this won't create be a problem for finishing her treatments on schedule.
Gaby chatted for a bit with Hope and Sarah tonight while drawing and colouring pictures and watching a movie. She was feeling pretty tired by 9:00 but wanted to stay up until she could talk to Mom when her plane lands in Vancouver. She talked to Mom around 10:00 and went down shortly thereafter without much of a fuss.

 
 
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