This is Day 5 of my baby, Serenity, being diagnosed with and treated for Leukemia. Day 4 is here.
Serenity had some happy moments today, but they were short-lived.
(click the picture for a much larger version)
Today was actually a pretty rough day for Serenity, it was a day filled with more drugs/meds than most people take in a year and throwing up time and time again. As a father, it is very difficult to watch your baby go through this. My heart goes out to all the Dad’s (and Mom’s) who have paved this road before us. This is something you truly cannot know until you’ve experienced it, Cancer is now my biggest enemy. If Cancer was something living, even if it was Hulk Hogan or Andre the Giant, I would find a way to beat it down and kill it, even if it killed me to do it. I don’t have words to express the anguish and the frustration that this disease brings. It’s bad enough that it’s trying to kill her – but it’s also making her so sick and miserable that I can barely stand it.
There’s a saying that everyone knows: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”. I would also say that, when the biggest challenge of your life comes along, own it and conquer it. How do you make lemonade out of cancer though? How do you own a challenge like Cancer? Well, for those who know me well, you know that I’m a little bit wacky about things sometimes. So, with total wackiness, here’s our first ownage and lemonading of Cancer:
This is really a bit of a homage to the TV show Kyle: XY. In that series, a girl who has been hiding her cancer ‘comes out’ about it and gets a shirt that , I believe, says “Cancer Girl”. But I liked Cancer Chic better. Of course, Serenity can’t read or even understand what her shirt says/means. But it’s really more about Adria, me and the rest of the world. Serenity is now a Cancer Chic. She (meaning us) is taking ownership and full acceptance of the fact that she has cancer, and the lemon is now lemonade. Or something like that. I figure it’s kind of like a bald guy wearing a “Bald is Beautiful” shirt.
Other than sleeping for several hours today, most of the day was filled with taking medicine/drugs, throwing up said drugs, and then having to take the drugs again because she HAS to keep them down. If you’ve noticed in the pictures we’ve been posting, sometimes she looks disheveled and sometimes she looks like she is freshly changed and her hair is done. She goes through several outfits a day and her hair is constantly being done. But guess what happens when you’re puking hard every half hour – you look like crap! Cancer/Chemo is definately the antithesis of a beauty pageant.
There was a time or two today where she was feeling pretty good and even acting like her old self. The first picture of this post shows her at her best today. She was perky and energetic and playing with several of the new toys we got her from the ChipIn fundraiser. Seriously, that top picture is a result of everyone’s donations. Thank You, from the bottom of my heart. Here she is playing with several of her toys.
There has been a lot of progress on the new site, www.LiftingUpSerenity.com today. A bank account has been established and a PO Box that people can mail checks to. I have heard of several efforts underway to solicit funds to that account and several creative efforts to raise money for it. If you’re intersted in the details on that, click through the above link and then click on ‘Donate’.
The most exciting thing to me is that we’re now working on establishing a new non-profit foundation called “The Serenity Foundation” that will specifically financially help very young children who are fighting deadly diseases like Cancer and Diabetes. This is a much longer process. We’re learning what is involved in creating a 5013C (non-profit corporation that is able to provide tax deductions for donations) we’ve found that it can take anywhere from 6 weeks to 9 months (it’s ridiculous that getting the government’s approval for something like this takes as long as it does for a baby to gestate). A couple lawyers have volunteered their time to help us navigate that process and will be doing all the filing and other work for us. In the meantime, we are looking into options to piggyback the new foundation with currently existing ones. We’ll post details as we learn them. I’m really excited about doing this because once Serenity is cured, we’ll be able to keep giving back and hopefully help lots of other kids.
I’m very grateful to all the people who have donated time, money and energy so far in Serenity’s name. You are all the Angels Among Us.
UPDATE: Day 6 is here.
The story of Serenity’s battle with Leukemia begins here.