We walked into the children’s hospital today with time to burn. Between the speed that people drive on the toll way between my house and the hospital and leaving a little early, we managed to arrive in time to go into the massive room full of trains. No really, it’s this huge room with three different sections, four stories apiece, filled with trains chasing all over the room. One train had a tickle me Elmo, another had snow men. A third had an epic setup of Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, R2D2, and a Christmas tree. It was a huge morale boost, knowing what we were there for.
Upstairs, we went through reception quickly and did height and weight like always. Doing the blood pressure check, Leo reached out and questioned the name tag attached to the nursing tech’s shirt. It was a little cringe worthy because he nearly grabbed it off of her scrubs. Being that it was attached where you normally attach a name tag, I figure she took it in pretty good stride. All the same, we had the “don’t grab people in the area of the shirt,” conversation.
Since this isn’t our normal clinic (the normal one being unavailable today) we had the parade of “hi, i’m a (fill in the blank professional) and I’m just here to (fill in the blank find out if you have any questions so that your insurance company will pay me) and smile and walk out. The funny thing is that Leo never talks to people who are walking in the door to get paid. He is pretty instinctive about who is talking because it’s their job and who is there to talk to him because they are taking a genuine interest. He talks to the latter.
One of said (fill in the blank professionals) walked in the door today and made me proud of myself. Now understand, before I break my own arm patting myself on the back, that I have gotten A LOT better at not reacting sarcastically at stuff. A LOT. Sarcasm really happens when I’m more scared of something. It’s a defense mechanism, really. So when the doctor noted that Leo isn’t really gaining weight like he ought to, every sarcastic atom in my blood stream wanted to say, “oh no, do you suppose he has cancer and is having his system filled with chemicals that make everything taste like crap-based metal?” She even showed me a graph.
I forgot that Ross Perot is from Texas.
She left unsassed and we waited for the pharmacy to mix one of the most expensive shots you’ll ever hear of. Another (fill in the blank professional) walked in to disrupt a game of “annoy dad by trying to sit on his lap while also fighting over who gets to stick his finger up his nose” played by Peter and Leo. I have no idea what she wanted. I had seven fingers up my nose. Finally, the nurses came in and brought the shot to go in Leo’s leg. They jam that sucker in there, plunge it down, tell him it’s ok, I avoid sarcasm again, and then they leave us in the room for an hour to make sure the shot doesn’t kill him. It makes me miss Kapiolani, in a way, because they did not come back for a straight hour. Now I knew how to entertain the dudes for an hour so we were ok, but I thought of those early days when I did not know what to do or how to prep. When you go in for this inpatient stuff, you multiply the time they say it will take by three, and then add fifteen minutes.
We came home and on the way hit a Sonic. Cuz can. Leo ate a hot dog, without being begged to eat, the others had corn dogs and cherry limeades, finding the fruit at the bottom. We have entered into the last phase of this chemo before maintenance begins and, despite having fear offered to us on occasion, we are strong.