Thursday, December 01, 2005

A Milestone

A long-awaited milestone happens tomorrow.

TP is scheduled to have her final Solu-Medrol infusion.

It's been over 18 months now since the home health care nurse has come here routinely to examine TP, get blood, do vitals, and access the port in TP's chest so that I can start the IV drip with the medicine which has basically saved TP's life. We have kind of developed a love-hate relationship with this "liquid gold", as you can well imagine.

Initially, TP had the infusion three times a week. A few hours before the infusion, I mixed up the meds in the little vial with sterilized water which came in a separate vial. It was a slow and tedious process at first - making sure that everything was sterilized, learning how to insert a needle with a syringe into a vial and transferring the liquid in one over to the crystallized medicine in the other, then emptying the diluted medicine vial by a needle which was then inserted into an IV bag, which was then hooked up into long tubing and then joined together with the tubing from TP's port. After awhile, I became quite adept at it, and it is still something I can do quite aptly even though the infusions have been decreased to the point to where now they have been administered several weeks apart over the past few months.

I have played a crucial part in the caretaking of my daughter during her illness. At times, it's been very exhausting. But when I look back over the past 18 months and see where she is now compared to where she was then, I consider all the hard work and emotional upheaval to be well worth it. She is thriving and stable, and her faith has deepened tremendously (as has mine).

I won't miss these infusions at all. I will miss the giving TP the extra care which she required during the procedure because I believe it brought us closer. It was an opportunity for me to minister to her in a very special way, and for that, I am grateful.

I am also grateful for the wonderful nurse that TP had from the home health company. She has been such a blessing, in more ways than one. It will be difficult to say "good-bye" to her tomorrow! But, this is the day we have been hoping for, praying for, for a very long time.

What a reason to celebrate! And what a reason to offer up prayers of thanksgiving to the Healer who has brought health back to TP.


At 9:50 AM, Blogger Julana said...

Congratulations! I remember what a relief it was when our son went off steroids after daily injections for three months. (Also an end to BP checks and stool monitoring. The side effects were terrible.) What a relief. I'm so glad for you. And glad you were able to pull some good lessons out of it. And so glad the treatment was effective.

At 4:47 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

Hello Valarie, Good news! I wish I could give you both a hug!

You feel like a nurse, huh? Anna was on antiobiotics 5 times a day for 4 weeks. I remember being so nervous about keping everything sterile, and the possibility of spreading germs. I also remember when Anna got her pick line out after it being in for 3 months. I was excited, but sad to part. Sounds silly but I loved my home health care nurse! She really cared about Anna, she would even take time from her busy days to come to the hospital to visit us during our stays!

At 9:49 PM, Blogger Nettie said...

There should be some wonderful quote about blessings, and partings, and lessons here. But since I don't know any-Wahoo!!

At 3:17 AM, Blogger bigwhitehat said...

You should have a party.

At 11:46 AM, Blogger Nettie said...

Valerie- email me about BBW, the address is in my profile, k?

At 9:32 AM, Blogger My Kid's Mom said...

Hi Julana - Yes, the side effects have been horrible for TP, too - weight gain, bloated face, stretch marks on her body (and you can imagine what that's like for a 17 year old young woman). But, the main thing is that the treatment WAS effective! Thanks!

Sarah - I wish I could hug you guys, too. Yes, I do feel like a nurse, and I was afraid about keeping everything sterile, too. When we said goodbye to the home health nurse on Friday, we all had tears in our eyes. . .

Nettie - I couldn't think of any quote, either! And while I was only kidding you about the BBW coupons, I will still e-mail you!!! Thanks!

BWH - Actually, we ARE going to have a celebration, as soon as we get the results back from the blood work to make sure everything is, indeed, normal! Do you and Echo and the kids want to come? Actually, we could have a "BLOG PARTY"! Thanks for your support!


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