Sucker Punched!

Have you ever had it where things are going so well that it feels like you are floating, only to be brought back to earth with a punch to the gut… or a little lower?  That was me yesterday.  Before I explain what happened yesterday, let me share a random flashback from about six weeks ago.  I should tell you that I’m not a “superstitious” guy or a “karma” guy, but more of a “God’s got a plan” guy and I don’t necessarily need to understand the plan or agree with the plan (yo God, in case your wondering…I’m not really digging this one), but I know he loves even this numskull and I just need to trust Him.  I’m not trying to get all Ned Flanders on you, I’m just mentioning that because of some irony that is keeping me up at 3:30  in the morning (well that, and pondering why they haven’t created infomercials for the Wonderbro yet?).

About six weeks ago, I went for a run with a really wise buddy of mine.  I’m like 99.9% of guys where the deepest I get with other men is, “How are you?  Oh, good. Umm..sooo… did you see game last night?” but not with this guy.  We always tend to have these deep, down in the soul kind of talks.  We hadn’t seen each other in a few months and he asked how things were going.  I replied by telling him that things were going so well,  it was a little scary.  My wife had just been promoted at work and things were great with us, my 12 year old just got a very encouraging call back that we were all very excited about, and I had my own zany excitement going on.  I remember saying, “It has me a little nervous thinking, ‘Okay God, what exactly are you setting me up for here? Things are going TOO good!”  Now, a month and a half later, I’m sorry that I ever asked.

Anyway, back to yesterday.  I was at work and of course, my mind wandered to Delaney, so I shot my wife a text inquiring how she was doing.  The text back was “Delaney is doing well. We walked to school.  :)”.   I had to re-read it a few times to make sure it didn’t say, “Your a fool” or “kids in the pool” but sure enough, I read it right the first time.  I was THRILLED!!!  We live about 1/2 mile from Delaney’s school and yesterday was one of those beautiful Colorado days where you just want to get outside and enjoy it, so my wife and Delaney got out for a walk.  They didn’t start out with the intent of going all the way to the school, but Delaney was feeling well and wanted to keep walking, so the next thing they knew, they were all the way to the school.

It was too much, and I was too excited, for getting all the details via text so I had to call my wife as soon as I left work.  It was by far the most excited I had been since the stupid cancer diagnosis.  It turned out that not only did she walk all the way to school, her classmates were playing on the playground so Delaney got to see all of her friends and her teacher.  Delaney sat down on a bench and the kids stayed behind a line a little ways off because as Delaney explained, “I’m still fragile.”  She also got to see the new fish that the class got and all the very loving front office staff that has been so concerned about her.  I was so darn excited for her while just hearing all of this, that  I could barely contain myself!

Then, only about a minute later, the conversation turned to the topic of today’s treatment.  I knew she had her “Friday chemo” but I was picturing the “quick, we’ll just inject this little liquid in her port” kind.  Somehow, in all the medical jargon and with so much going on, I missed the fact that they were going to need to put her under again today so they could inject more chemo in her spine and THEN they were also going to put more in her port to get it in her blood as well.  All of  this will take place only after they draw more blood and after we try to keep our ravenous little werewolf from eating all morning, which is going to make her very upset.  Needless to say, I wasn’t floating anymore.

I’m not sure why it hit me so hard.  She had the whole spinal thing done just last week, and she did fine.  They had taken plenty of blood and she has always done fine with that.  They already tried out her little Ironman port, and it didn’t phase our little fighter one bit.  Maybe it was just the timing of this realization coming right after I was just elated about the day she was having, but I could barely even speak after all this hit me.

We’re barely a week into an almost three year ordeal, so I’ve got to man up quickly.  I figured that there was no better time to go check out the local doctor’s office.  Now would be a great time for an apology and to point out I was only kidding about the whole “Ben Stein in a Goofy tie” comment (my next funny joke will be my first funny joke).  He actually seemed very caring yesterday and his staff was great.  I hit the odometer on my way home and it clocked out at just about five miles, which is nice.  However, I could care less about making this more convenient on us, we just want whatever is best for our daughter.  Here is the part I wish I knew: we are blessed with the ability to choose between two top doctors who have a very different approach to today’s procedure (the docs at Children’s put her under for today’s treatment, whereas this doctor just keeps her conscious but not feeling anything), which one is better for Delaney?

That’s a rhetorical question by the way.  Unless you are an expert in leukemia and much smarter than these two doctors who are both at the top of their field, you don’t need to let me know which one of the two is better in your opinion.  I’ve had a lot of very well meaning people share their research and opinions with me already, but I think I’m good on that (at least for now, anyways).  It’s not that I am ungrateful (because I can’t even put into words how appreciative we are of all the love and support we have received), it’s just that I am reading what the doctors and nurses have been giving us and believing what they have told us is about a 95% success rate.  I don’t need to hear that you read it is actually ______ (fill in the blank with whatever lower number you heard) or that if she could just learn to stand on her head while burping the ABC’s in Espanol, she’ll be cured no problemo.  PLEASE do NOT take this last part the wrong way.  We are very grateful that you would care enough to research this and probably will want to know all of the latest things you have discovered, but just not right now.  Right now we are still in a little bit of shock, sad for our daughter, in a little bit of information overload, and apparently I need to go buy a cup so I’ll be prepared for the next sucker punch that comes my way.

11 thoughts on “Sucker Punched!

  1. As always, i will pray, along with pastors in various corners of the world, who pray with me through our exchanged prayer lists. I wouldn’t dream of offering medical advice, so that is not nor will not be forthcoming.

    Know only that I am there, and that I care for you all. Your time is precious and if there is something else I can do to help, I am a call away. God will provide clarity for the decisions ahead. I’ll add prayers for answers to your questions, and clarity in the processes that lie ahead, along with conquering this thing. I pray for victory over it, for all of you. May God bless you with comfort, peace and healing.

  2. I heard about Delaney’s visit almost the minute Claire got off the bus 🙂 She was very excited to see her!! We will be thinking of you guys today and hope that all goes smoothly with her treatment.

  3. Dont be so hard on yourself. Although Delaney got the medical diagnosis you have all gotten a diagnosis of sorts. Give yourself time to adjust.

  4. Hello “Delaney” Family! My son Alex is in Delaney’s Kindie class. We are praying for you daily. Your strength, humor and faith amaze and inspire me! I must have just missed seeing Delaney yesterday at school as I was volunteering in the classroom before recess:). Alex is also pretty excited about the fish too! I’ve tried talking with him about Delaney last week but he kept saying ” I know! Mrs Farah Already told us”. She is a pretty awesome teacher. When I explained that Delaney will lose her hair he said ” She gets to wear a hat!”. I love that young kids can see the positive in times like these. Your Delaney is our hero and we will continue to pray for her and your family. Much Love and Hugs to Delaney! The Denslow Family

  5. Here’s to you punching the sucka!! Your choice is being made for you, try to clear your mind for a moment. Which is not easy too do when you have visions have bare butts and Ben Stein floating there! 🙂 Prayers to you on D’s procedure today.

  6. Hello Tom, You do not know me & we will most likely never meet, but my husband recently worked with you. We have a 6 year old daughter & I cannot imagine what your family is going through. I have been reading your blog & plan to do so until your angel is in full remission….. Anyway, just know that you are in my prayers—you will be guided to make the right choices for Delaney. God bless, Amy

  7. It’s hard for me to read your posts without crying and being brought back to my son’s cancer battle. The one comment that killed me from well-meaning friends and supporters was “I don’t know how you are doing it!” Seems benign, but I wanted to ask, “Is there really a choice? If I had a choice, my 4-year-old son wouldn’t have cancer. But since he does, I will do whatever it takes to help my son beat this.” At the time, I had no idea that there were parents who would walk away from a sick child–not even a choice that I would think of let alone do.
    Then others would ask me, “Aren’t you mad at God for doing this to your son?” That one hurt as well, because the truth was, I was so angry, but it didn’t hurt my faith. It strengthened it. I stopped pretending to know God’s plan or if he fit into my definition of goodness. Ian’s cancer battle taught me to walk in faith without answers, without reasons, and to look at everyday as a blessing. I also had a huge “ah-ha!” moment during this time: In order for others to find their goodness, someone else had to be suffering so others could access their compassion. How that played out for me was letting others give us meals, things, and love–allowing them to bless us, so they we could bless them. My faith has never been stronger.
    I am praying for your family and your beautiful little girl!

  8. Tom, i just want to say thank you for this blog, I so appreciate reading it and am interested in every post. I also think it is great that you guys are telling us all how we can help and also the things that don’t help as much. People just want to do the right thing and your honesty is so appreciated. Thanks again and please know that so many people, more than you probably realize, are with you all in our thoughts and prayers. Cheryl

    Sent from my iPad

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