Before we knew it, 12 consecutive days of radiation were coming to an end and we were on our last day!
Jackson and I made cupcakes the night before to bring to the Day Surgery staff at CHKD and also the Radiation Oncology staff at Norfolk General. Remember my post a few months ago teaching our children to say thank you?
Well, cupcakes were a good idea in theory, but since Jackson could not have anything to eat or drink before sedation and saw me passing the cupcakes out and he couldn’t have any…he was UPSET! Just remember to say thanks at an appropriate time for your child. Not when they’re sitting there NPO in their bear slippers.
On the last day, you get to “ring the bell” three times to let everyone know you’ve completed your radiation treatment. Well, Jackson wasn’t real interested in following those rules and rang it and rang it and rang it. When you’re one, you don’t ring it three times like the sign says, you ring the crap out of it!
One of Jackson’s favorite stories I tell him from his cancer treatment happened this day.
After surgery, stem cell transplant and radiation, the boy knew his meds. He knew how to clean his central line and push his saline. He loved to help. After two weeks of radiation, the anesthesiologists would even let him push his own medicine to relax him before sedation. He’d push it in and then laughhhhhhhh and laughhhhh as it took effect. Then the doctor would give him that Propofol and….OUT.
As time went on, they’d have to give him extra doses during radiation, even though it was only five minutes or so that he needed to remain still, because close to the end, his foot would start moving. That meant he was starting to wake up and you don’t want that to happen.
Basically, Jackson could metabolize enough drugs to kill a rock star and keep on rolling.
Well on this day, Jackson woke up from his extra dose of Propofol even before he’d gotten out of the radiation room. We still had the stretcher ride from Norfolk General to CHKD, which was a good five minutes.
We had a new anesthesiologist that day…and she was the nervous type. She wasn’t comfortable letting him push his meds or move around much. I kept telling her his tolerance was pretty high.
You should have seen her face when Jackson decided, still half drunk from sedation, that he was going to surf on the stretcher. If you’ve ever experienced a drunk toddler attempting to balance on a moving gurney, then you’ll know what I’m talking about.
Well take my word for it, it’s just as funny as it is dangerous.
And poor Nervous Nelly was pushing that stretcher just as fast as she could to get us back to the PACU before he fell and hurt himself. Still cracks me up to this day.
Well, we got to the PACU all right…the anesthesiologist pushing an empty bed and me pushing a fully awake Jackson in his stroller. For his safety and her sanity, I took over. The PACU nurses just gave me a look like…well, alright…guess you’ll be getting out of here soon.
That boy. Not a thing has changed about his personality.
Anyway, this picture was taken that morning at CHKD. It’s been used for a lot of CHKD marketing materials, like the Round Up for Cancer poster at Farm Fresh and in KidsStuff magazine.
Don’t worry, it wasn’t much longer after this picture was taken that he got to EAT HIS CUPCAKE!