Thursday- Day +78

Naomi, Lauryn and I woke at 5:30am and left by 6am to gas the car ad head to COH. It was a smooth drive (except that my Kindle battery died and I was without an audiobook).

Our lab appt was quick. We chatted with some friends we’ve made by being there for appts each week together. He was a 49 year old man whose mother was his careperson. In her late 60s, she was going through a parallel experience with me. He is a month behind Naomi in recovering and will reach his 100 days in May. His was a stem cell transplant through a PICC line in his arm and he was spared a chest catheter, like Naomi. His donor was his younger sister who is also in her 40s. Due to his being larger than his sister, she had to donate over two days. They were such a sweet family and we will miss seeing them.

We have changed our weekly appt day to Mondays and will no longer bump into them at COH, sadly, but a Monday appt is better for our family. It will allow us to do school work 4 days straight (Tues thru Fri) and allow Aaron to be in the office most of the week uninterrupted.

Naomi’s appt was fairly normal with fluctuating numbers and high potassium. The drs are not too concerned about the high potassium but did some additional blood and urine samples to determine if she needs to see a nephrologist. The nephrologist is on the floor on Mondays – another reason to switch to Monday appts.

Naomi’s platelets were really good again at 259,000. Her WBCs and ANC dropped a little low again. Her “low” ANC is now 1200, so I will not complain. We expect this to happen and nothing is alarming about it.

Being home has been fantastic. We had three wonderful school days this week. Our home is looking organized and like HOME again. Emotionally, things are stabilizing and everyone is settling in pretty well. We have not been having the emotional outbursts and releases of frustration we experienced the first few days home. Caítriona is still very anxious about my leaving her. She has slept with me pretty much every night and does not do well with me walking out of the room (much less the house!) without her. She has been most traumatized by all of this.

Naomi has been doing some emotional clearing of her own. She talks in bits and pieces, mostly at bedtime, to work through everything she has gone through. In some ways, I think she is accepting it all exceptionally. But sometimes she will say things that make me realize she does know how sick she was. When she says things like, “you took me to the hospital many times for transfusions or else I would have died,” she does so in a way that I feel it stab my heart and force myself to be thankful to God rather than full of fear. She talks of St. Rose and COH as places where she was saved and does so with a grateful tone. She is extremely happy, active, cuddly and affectionate. That makes my heart happy. She is so normal that I sometimes forget she is receiving treatment!

Next week will be full of adjustments as we go to COH on Monday and Aaron returns to the office. It is a new start to a new life and we are Blessed to be able to start back to something normal. We are all excited for a new start at “normal” and pray that Naomi continues to improve and be well.

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