When I was 21 and at ASU going to school…. the weekend of St. Patrick’s Day, I was out celebrating with 2 of my girlfriends. One thing led to another..(I blame it on the green beer and wanting to rebel against the ONE thing my dad asked me to never do) and we ended up at a tattoo parlor. Right above our left ankles, on the inside, we all 3 got matching tattoos that said Rock Star with the shape of a star in the middle. It was crazy and fun, and the older I got, every time I looked down at it, it made me laugh and relive my youth. I always said it was going to keep me young. When this all happened, I was trying to think of a name for Ronan’s blog with my girlfriends. We went back and forth with sweet names… and then it dawned on me. Rockstar Ronan was born. It was perfect. The saying, “Everything happens for a reason,” is becoming more and more true to me. I seriously believe that someone up there has my life mapped out…. it is not completely in my control. Who would have guessed this tattoo would link me to my little Rockstar forever. It now has more meaning than I ever could have imagined.
The happiest day of my new life
I got a phone call from Dr. Maze today re: Ronan’s scan results. He told me as much as he could, which was so nice of him to do. Waiting is the hardest part and he instantly put me at ease with his news. Woody heard from Dr. Eshun around 5:00. We have some very good news to share tonight. 2 weeks ago we were told to expect the mass in Ronan’s abdomen to shrink around 20-25 percent, but not much more than that. Dr. Eshun told us tonight that the mass has actually shrunk 47%. That is huge news for us! We could not be happier with those results. It is still in his bone marrow, and there are a couple of other areas they are going to watch… but nothing else has progressed or started to grow, so Dr. Eshun is very pleased with what he is seeing. I fell to the floor after hearing this news… and cried like a baby. All I could think about was how I knew Ronan would fight this as hard as he possibly could. He is proving it by the results we are seeing and how well he is handling everything. He is so unbelievably strong. He is fighting so hard for us all of us, because he loves us all so much.Today has been such a happy day for our family, a day full of hope and a big sigh of relief. We still have a long road ahead of us, but today was a victory for us. Tonight, we will sleep a little better and dream a little sweeter. We are so full of hope and joy and are going to continue to love Ronan so deeply and so much that it kills all of his cancer. We are doing everything we can to surround him with positive energy, laughter, and love. We will continue with his treatment plan and pray that we continue to see amazing results.
I had lunch today with 3 lovely ladies. I finally had the chance to meet another mom, Lara, her son was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma and he is now 10 years old. They live here and are very involved in raising money to fund less toxic treatments for this disease and to find a cure. I cannot tell you how much meeting her meant to me. Her son, Noah, is alive, healthy, and is so full of love for life. He beat all of the odds and is living proof that miracles do happen. Lara gave me a lot of great advice and seeing her courage and strength was so very inspiring. I can’t wait to meet Noah someday and introduce Ronan to him.
I also saw a therapist today. I knew within 15 minutes of our session that she was the one. Intelligent, compassionate, and we meshed well. She gets it. You want to know how I really knew she was the one for me?? She asked me about Ronan’s cancer, she asked me to tell her what his treatment plan entailed. I went through the list of 5 rounds of chemo, surgery, another round of chemo, stem cell transplant (maybe 2), Radiation, and the last blast of antibodies. She looked at me and goes, “Does cussing offend you?” I go, ” No, quite the opposite.” And she goes, “Good. Holy shit.” Ahhhhh, a woman after my own heart! I loved that she was so raw and blunt. I don’t need any sissy pants, sugar-coating, therapist. I need someone who understands that this is one of the worst possible things to happen to a parent and who can look me in the eye and tell me it’s bullshit, but she can figure out how to get me through it, so I don’t have to check myself into a loony bin. This lady is going to be that person for me, I can already tell. I feel better than I have in a very long time. I can see little pieces here and there of our old life coming back. It’s like there are little flickering pieces of glitter floating through the air and every once in a while I’ll catch one. I caught one yesterday when I spent a few hours with Woody. We went furniture shopping and to lunch. I can’t tell you how important those few hours were with him. I allowed myself to forget about Ronan’s cancer for a while and just enjoyed spending some time with my husband. It was a beautiful day spent with a beautiful man.
I just want to tell each and every one of you who are reading this blog, following Ronan’s journey, praying and thinking about us, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I will say this over and over again until the day I die… I know he feels your love and I know all of the love, prayers, and positive energy are working. There is only so much medicine can do, so please continue to do whatever you are doing for him:)
Scans are done… now we wait
We are home finally from our long evening of scans. Ronan started at 4:30 this evening and was not finished until about 8:00 tonight. Dr. Maze was there, as always, to give Ronan his anesthesia. He stayed the entire time, even though I was told that he would more than likely not be there when Ronan woke up. He was, and that meant the world to us. He is truly a doctor that goes above and beyond. The world would be such a better place with more people like him in it. He takes the time to go over everything with us… to make sure we are being taken care of, listens to our question and concerns and to give us advice. We will forever be grateful for him. He has made a huge difference in this experience for us. Ronan trusts him and truly loves him. He is only really like this with Dr. Maze and our wonderful nurse, Sharon. Those are the two people Ronan trusts the most… and those are the two people I trust the most. It makes a big difference when you can look into the eyes of the person who is taking care of your child and see that they truly have a passion and love for what they are doing. I see it every time I look into the eyes of the both of them. It brings me a lot of comfort and somehow makes me feel like everything is going to be alright.
Ronan woke up really grumpy from the anesthesia. He got a little sick to his stomach and slept the entire ride home. He is asleep now and I am hoping he stays that way for the rest of the night. Poor baby. He had a hard day and spent the better part of it being upset that we were at the hospital and not at home. It’s days like today that I feel so heartbroken for him. I just want him better and healthy so he can go back to his life before all of this. I did my best and was strong for him all day long… I spent the entire time at the hospital talking him through everything and trying to distract him. He just wanted to be home with his brothers. I don’t blame him; I did too.
I got to spend some time with Tricia and Marisa tonight. They both came to the hospital so I wouldn’t have to wait alone. It was nice to sit and laugh with them. They know when I need a good distraction and waiting for Ro to come out of anesthesia is always hard for me. Thanks girls for sitting with me tonight and thanks Marisa for checking my blood sugar levels;)
This weekend we are going to lay low and enjoy our family time together. Ronan will start round 3 of his “Magic Medicine” on Monday and I just found out that we will have to be admitted into the hospital for his treatment. The dose is stronger so they will need to monitor him all week. Not excited about that but like always, we will make the best of the situation.
We should hear back about Ronan’s scans some time tomorrow. Praying for good news and praying hard. Sweet dreams my friends.