Monday, November 8, 2010

Giving the Gift of Life

Today was the big day!  Miss Lyric went in at 7:15 this morning to have her bone marrow harvest.  Devon had her MP3 player loaded with some new Taylor Swift songs.  She listened while they waited.  They got called back to the holding room while I was still upstairs with Story.  I started getting nervous thinking I wasn't going to be able to see Lyric before Grammy and Cadence arrived to stay with Story.   Story said she would be okay staying in her room by herself while I went down with Lyric. Grammy and Cadence got there 15 to 20 minutes after I left, but when they walked in her room she told them she had been by herself for hours!
 Lyric sat on my lap for a while.

She did a little coloring while she waited.

 The cooler that was going to be used to transport the bone marrow was in the holding room with us.  Devon and I thought it was really cool, but Lyric thought we were nuts for wanting to take pictures of it.
 We couldn't find a brand name on it, but it looked just like something you would use to take your lunch to work.
 This was the first and hopefully last time we will have parental hospital bands with both of our children's names on them!
 Lyric was chilling in her hospital gown and socks watching Monsters vs Aliens while she waited.
 Story sent a sweet card and bracelet down with me to give to Lyric.

 This child had the loosest tooth ever and would not let us pull it!  She said she was scared it would hurt, but I think she just knew she wouldn't be able to do her Nanny McPhee impression when it was gone.
 Miss Amanda, the child life educator stopped by to visit before they took back.  Lyric just had to show off that Nanny McPhee tooth again.
 We were worried about how things were going to go for Lyric before the procedure.  She can be a little bit of a drama queen, so we thought there might be some complaining about not being able to eat or drink; or just drama about going to the OR in general.  We were so wrong!  She never mentioned being hungry or thirsty.  She was playing around and making jokes the whole time.

After the procedure we were called back to the consulting room to speak with the doctors.  Nurse Becky came in with the marrow in the cooler.

 You know I made her take it out, so I could get a picture.  She put it back in the cooler to walk it across campus.  They weighted it, filtered out the bone chips, got a cell count and whatever else they had to do to get it ready for Story Bell.
 A little while later we were called back to the recovery room to see Lyric.  Walking in and seeing this:
 was pretty tough!  This is one of the healthy children, not the sick one.  We made sure we prepared Lyric for what was going to be happening to her.  She spoke with child life about what the transplant was, but she also met with Amanda to look at pictures of the OR and see exactly where she was going to be going and what was going to happen.  Apparently, we left one thing out!  Amanda had shown her pictures of IVs and explained to her what an IV was, but none of the pictures she showed her had any of the kiddos wearing no nos (the white cast looking things on her arms).  My baby was barely awake in recovery and she said to me, "My arms aren't broken, are they?"  I started crying, I felt so bad!  Something so simple, but yet we didn't think about it.  I can't imagine how she felt waking up with both arms in "casts."
The doctors warned us that she would be puffy when she woke up.  It was from the fluid and having to lay on her stomach for so long.  When she first woke up she had some botox lips!
 Miss Amanda brought her in a huge bag of goodies.  She got this shirt and a matching teddy bear with the same shirt.
 In recovery waiting to be released, still a little puffy.
 The Nanny McPhee tooth was gone!  The anesthesiologist had to pull it to get the breathing tube in.  She said it was so loose it didn't even bleed.  The anesthesiologists gathered up money for the tooth fairy to come while she was sleeping.
 They were just setting Story up with the bone marrow when we went up to get a picture with her, but she had spent all morning playing with Cadence and she had already been pretreated with Benadryl, so she wasn't feeling very photogenic.
 That's what a bone marrow transplant looks like folks! It pretty much looks the same as when she has a blood transfusion.
Go now bone marrow work your way into the bone and start producing some healthy blood cells for Story Bell!  If there happens to be any leukemia hanging around feel free to kick its ass!


Bona Fide Mama said...

Wow. You have no idea how much those pictures help me. I want to show this post to Ronin but I am scared to ruin her surprise goodies!! So funny that Lyric got a visit from the tooth fairy while she was under. That is just awesome. And I remember the puffiness from when Drayken had his surgery at seven weeks. That was harder to see than any of this leukemia stuff has been. I'm glad for the reminder to be prepared for that this time around too. Ronin and I will be working on our little package for the ladies next week. Looking forward to getting the goodies to them :)

Grandparents Driving For Donors said...

Lyric, you are a true life hero. Your story is an example for the adults we talk to during a Marrow Donor Campaign. That is what we do...ask strangers to join the Be The Match Registry. Many people do join, but many turn us down, too. Some people have legitimate health reasons, but others are just too scared to do what you just did....undergo a routine procedure to save your sister's life. Some site their fear of needles. Isn't that ridiculous? You are braver than most grown-ups we have met during our Marrow Donor Drives. I'll be telling people about you in the future and I am going to post it on our Face Book page, Marrow Nation. Our prayers are with your sister, your family, and with you, sweet angel!

Jill said...

What fabulous kids you have! I know you re proud! What a funny tooth fairy story too!