While my two year old son Jason was receiving chemotherapy in the hospital I envisioned his room to be a place of holiness and I prayed on the Holy Ground of the Hospital floor.

The following is an excerpt from Chemo Days 87 – Angel In My Pocket

Sunday, November 1, 1987

Day 24

Chemotherapy – continuous infusion of high dose Ara-C

The unit Jason was on was the toddler unit for children aged 2 to 5 years old who had various pediatric illnesses. The unit had 7 semi private rooms 4 isolation rooms for a total of 18 beds on the unit. Outside the door of each room was a little white plaque with the room no and some space to write in the child’s last name. After the name was written a little colored dot was put beside the name. This would indicate the type of pediatric specialty the patient was admitted to.

Green dots were for children with cancer. This is how the other parents knew I was about to join their group. Jason’s name had a green dot beside it, the telltale sign he had cancer and the seasoned moms wanted to come and offer their support.

Our conversations generally started with “what type of cancer does your child have?” and we shared stories of diagnosis. Our vocabulary increased to include words like, fatal, terminal illness, poor prognosis, bone marrow taps, lumbar punctures, neutrophil count, sepsis, and cancer was oncology and we were pediatric oncology parents. Through a cell mutation with no DNA our children had some form of pediatric malignancy and we all belonged to a new world for which we had not signed up or prepared ourselves for.

I learned there are many different types of childhood cancers. Too many to learn about.

Monday, November 2, 1987

Day 25

Chemotherapy – continuous infusion of high dose Ara-C

Child life playroom

Tuesday, November 3, 1987

Day 26

Chemotherapy – continuous infusion of high dose Ara-C

The room on the nursing unit has become our home. A crib, a cot, a rocking chair, a cupboard, a suitcase for me with clothes and toiletries and a suitcase of toddler clothes and lots of toys from home to keep Jason occupied. And a tape recorder with Christian music that filled the room with songs like “Holy Ground.”

I was devoted to prayer and worship to God. I would pray for an army of angels to protect and guard Jason as chemotherapy was being infused in to his tiny body. I prayed the chemotherapy would kill the cancer but not destroy the child.

Wednesday, November 4, 1987

Day 27

Chemotherapy – continuous infusion of high dose Ara-C and L-Asparaginase IM

Friday, November 6, 1987

Day 29

Chemotherapy – Vincristine and L-Asparaginase

Spinal tap – intrathecal chemotherapy – Methotrexate, Hydrocortisone, Cytosine e (Ara-C)

Labs – CBC, urinalysis

Discharge from hospital.

copyright Sheila Ethier 2014