Gaby's Story
December 11 – 17, 2006

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Monday December 11, 2006

Well…just as we were getting used to Gaby spending more time on an even keel emotionally, she woke up this morning in a very horrible mood and wasn't cooperating at all with getting ready for the day. Too bad, I'm sure she will be more up to doing something tomorrow. She had a busy weekend and it looks like it was more than she could handle.
Gaby was a lot more like herself again by late morning and spent the day with Dad running errands. She seemed to enjoy being out and about but started looking tired again fairly quickly and was happy to get home for some rest. Her appetite wasn't what it has been lately either. She just nibbled on a few things over the day and didn't really eat anything until dinner time.
After dinner, she spent time playing games with her brothers and watched a movie before heading off to bed.


Tuesday December 12, 2006

Gaby was in much better shape to face the day this morning. She still looked a little tired but once she got rolling she was happy to be going to school. Dad expected to get a call to go get her from school within an hour or two but the call didn't come until around 2:00. She was still in good spirits when Dad picked her up but she was looking quite tired, was a bit warm and needed some rest. She said she would have called Dad earlier but wanted to spend some time in computer class today, as she always misses classes on Wednesday due to hospital visits. She got a little upset when we were picking up Gray but settled down pretty quickly. Gray was a bit traumatized by her outburst and wouldn't talk to her for a half hour. Checked her temperature and found it was normal then Gaby spent a few hours laying around the house and playing games with Gray (once he started talking to her again).
She looked a lot better after getting some rest and ate quite well after school and dinner. She said she was looking forward to spending the night in the hospital tomorrow so she can get some sleep (like she's not sleeping at home) and play in the big playroom.
Gaby had a couple of visitor's tonight. A couple in the neighbourhood, that have been keeping up on Gaby's progress, decided they would like to bring her something for Christmas. Gaby was very happy (and thankful!) to receive an early Christmas present from Sally and William.
Gaby was quite easy to put to bed tonight and fell asleep almost immediately after a short bedtime story.


Wednesday December 13, 2006

Sorry for the update delay, We didn't get home from the hospital until Thursday evening and then we lost power at our house for a couple of days.

Made our first trip in a while to the Children's hospital for a big dose of chemo and an overnight stay. Gaby was a bit tough to get going this morning. She wasn't nearly as interested in an overnight stay as she was yesterday.
We arrived at the hospital at 10:20 and had her blood work done right away. She also had to get some 'swabs' done as she had been in another hospital overnight and they need to check for any foreign bugs she could have picked up. It took a little convincing to get this procedure done but she relented once she realized it was only going to tickle. Even though she does get 'stand offish' with the doctors and nurses sometimes, we can't help but be very proud of the way she handles herself most days. She goes into these visits time and again knowing they are going to make her sick and tired, affect her senses and even change her personality and appearance yet she still goes and for the most part goes with a smile on her face. What a great kid.
While we waited for her blood work results (to ensure she was ok for chemo), Gaby played with many crafts and watched some TV. Her numbers came back in no time and showed good enough for everything to go ahead today. The doctor checked in with her and seemed concerned about her droopy right eye and the fact that she's been walking on her toes a little more than usual and is going to setup a time to meet with a physio therapist sooner than we thought might be necessary. There was some concern over giving her one of the chemo drugs that causes radiation recall as it hasn't been that long since her radiation treatments stopped. In the end they decided that the benefit of the chemo outweighed the effects she may get because of it. She continued to make crafts in the playroom until her room upstairs was ready and by the time we headed up she was starting to get tired. She managed to eat quite a bit when we got settled upstairs and had fun colouring and watching a movie before nodding off. She really wanted to go visit everyone in ICU/TCU tonight but just ran out of steam. It's just as well, the nurse is going to have to wake her up every two hours tonight to go to the bathroom so she should get all the rest she can get.


Thursday December 14, 2006

Gaby didn't get a lot of sleep last night, is very cranky today and has been quite sick all night and this morning. This round of chemo seems to have really hit her hard and we can already see the radiation effects coming back in the way of redness around her eyes. Hopefully, it won't last long.
She was completely uninterested in having any visitors for most of today and could care a less whether they were there to help or not. All she wanted was to lay in bed and sleep or watch TV. We had a lot of visitors scheduled for today so this was a challenging day to say the least. Thankfully, many of the visitors just needed to talk with Dad. We met with the physio therapist to evaluate Gaby's legs but Gaby didn't tolerate much before getting fed up and she fought with the therapist until she couldn't do any more. We will have to get the remainder of her evaluation done next week. Dad had a chat with Gaby when the therapist left and she was much better behaved with the occupational therapist that followed. Whew! She wasn't very chatty but she let this therapist get through her evaluation without a fight.
After her visits with the therapists, Gaby had a visit from the psychologist where she got to play for a while. She quite enjoyed that visit and said she would like to see her again. While she was visiting with the psychologist she had an unexpected visit from Santa, Rudolf and Frosty that kept her in good spirits for a while. We then met with a teacher from the hospital who is going to contact the teacher in Coquitlam who takes care of home bound children as Gaby is going to continue to miss a lot of school and we don't want her to get too far behind. She is going to continue going to school whenever she can but with all the bugs going around this time of year she may not be able to go as often as she would like.
By 2:00 pm, Gaby was starting to feel a lot better physically but still wasn't herself mentally and put up quite a fight getting unhooked from her IV pole and having her insuflon put in. The nurse was quite shaken by Gaby's 'state' and we had to let Gaby cool down for a while before carrying on. Dad explained to the nurse that Gaby is not normally like this and has only started having these harsh mood swings over the last couple of months. After getting some time to clear her head, Gaby was a bit more receptive to getting all the loose ends taken care and couldn't wait to get going home. She felt bad for the way she was acting and said that she doesn't understand why she gets so upset over such silly things.
We finally left the hospital about 4:45 and were happy to get home. This was a tough stay at the hospital and Gaby was wiped out and went to bed shortly after arriving home.


Friday December 15, 2006

Gaby slept until 9:00 this morning and woke in a pretty good mood. She is still feeling quite sick and had trouble keeping anything (including her meds) down. We lost power around 2:00 AM so the kids kept themselves occupied playing games and watching Christmas shows on Gaby's portable DVD player. It was a pretty uneventful day.
Gaby is finding it harder to swallow again and says that it burns when she takes her meds by mouth. We checked inside her mouth for any sores but couldn't see anything out of the ordinary. Thankfully, the redness in her face is already starting to fade and the cream we got in California is helping to keep her face from getting too dry. We're hoping she is feeling better for Grandma's birthday party tomorrow.


Saturday December 16, 2006

Gaby slept well last night and was looking much better this morning. Her appetite still isn't there and she is bothered by almost every smell she comes across but isn't letting it get her down today. She was less than thrilled about getting her meds as she is still feeling quite sick but managed to get them in and keep them down today. The power was still out at our house this morning and wasn't expected to be fixed until late tonight so we decided to find a hotel room for the night. We were fortunate to find a room at the same hotel that Grandma's birthday party is being held at and headed over as soon as we could. Gaby (and the rest of the family) had a great time at Grandma's party. Gaby was in great spirits and enjoyed the chance to dance and play for a while. She was bothered by the smell of the food and decided it was best to hang out in the stairwell until the buffet was gone. She danced pretty hard and had to keep taking time to recoup but managed very well. By 10:00, she was exhausted and went right to sleep when we got to our room.


Sunday December 17, 2006

Had to get up early today to get to Church by nine. We got to Church and the power was still out there so they had a short service today. Gaby made it through the service without incident. We went out for breakfast after Church and Gaby got sick while waiting for our table. After drinking some water and having a little to eat she was feeling better. Gaby was very tired today and played with her Polly Pocket toys and on the computer, spending most of the day in her room.
She had great difficulty taking her meds again today, still burning in her mouth and throat. Looked into her mouth again and could see she has a sore on the back of her throat. Hopefully it won't stay around for long. The redness on her face is completely gone again and she has only a few small brown patches remaining.
She still isn't eating all that much but managed to keep down most of what she did eat.

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