Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Lauren van Winkle

Hey Guys,

I am not a morning person, but somehow I managed to drag myself out of bed at 6am yesterday. Maybe it was the promise of delicious chemo that got me up & at 'em so easily. ...I'm going to have to say probably not, though.

We actually made it to Children's early yesterday - my appointment was at 7:30, and we were sauntering in around 7:20 - potentially a new record? (My mom and I tend to run late for things...) We made it up to the check-in desk at Day Hospital just behind a woman talking really loudly on her cell phone, with an adorable little boy curled up sleeping in a wheelchair. The woman (it's still unclear if it was his mom or not) just stood there complaining into the phone about how she had to take "The Kid" to the hospital and he was giving her so much trouble today, and he was such a handful... The nurse kind of looked over after she got off the phone and gave the woman a doubtful look, with "He always seems so sweet here, and he's sleeping now!"

I feel really bad for some of the little kids at Children's, especially the ones who are really sick and don't have a support system from their families. Most of the time, you see the little tiny kids in their rooms all hooked up but looking relatively happy because they're surrounded by family and toys and don't really know any different (which is sad enough on its own). It's even worse to see the kids who are all tiny and hooked up but being yelled at by their parents, because they're not even surrounded by the positive energy they need to heal more quickly. I guess that's why Children's has such a great system of social workers checking in all the time (heck, I even have a social worker come in and check on me - but maybe that's because the staff thinks we've lost our minds because we laugh SO much...)

Anyway, I got Kristy yesterday, who is my favorite nurse. She's about 3 years older than I am, and is by FAR the best nurse I've ever had. She never waits to be asked to do something and is always in as soon as my machine starts to beep - sometimes even before I have to press the alert button! Usually, the nurses wait until Dr. Adams comes in before they'll access my port, but Kristy always does it right away so that as soon as the chemo order is filled, all she has to do is hook up the tubes, instead of letting it sit there while she hooks ME up also. Because of all of her awesome prompt nurse-work, I was unhooked and on my way out of Day Hospital by 11:20 - I'm ABSOLUTELY sure that's a record for us.

I was feeling pretty crappy by the time I got home, and Brian was cool enough to run to McDonald's and get me a milkshake and fries (which sounded so good at the time, but now thinking about it is making my stomach turn!) I spent a few hours up in my bed, alternately sleeping and watching a couple hours of THS:Investigates Various Terrible Crimes Against Beautiful People (I believe it was a mish-mash of "Husbands Who Kill" and "Young, Beautiful, and Missing," because I managed to catch a bit of Elizabeth Smart at the end...)

Later on in the day, I was able to keep down some ramen (knock on wood, but I've managed to keep the vomit count down to 0... I'd like it to stay that way, although some days take more willpower than others...)

I spent basically the rest of the night sleeping on the couch or sleeping in my bed with Winnie (who normally hates cuddling, but makes the sacrifice when I'm feeling crappy) so I feel a little like Rip van Winkle - when I woke up this morning, I had absolutely NO concept of what time it was. And it's raining (which I love) but when I got in bed yesterday afternoon, it was really sunny out...

I'm feeling pretty good at the moment (all hopped up on Kytril to stave of the nausea) and even considering meeting a friend for tea before he goes to New Zealand for three weeks - this, however, could take a turn for the worst when I make the first attempt to get downstairs and/or eat anything. The digestive system on chemo is a delicate beast...

Thanks for all of the comments people have been leaving! I love to hear from you!

Lots of Love,


  1. Hi Lauren! I can't erase what you said about the little kid you saw in the hosp. I love kids, unfortunately I don't have one. and hoping to have to have even just one (fingers crossed) :)

    Anyway, Im glad you had a great day today! I admire you for being a jolly person. Its great to know you.

    You are an inspiration (",)

  2. Hey Lauren, just wanted to let you know that I really enjoy your posts! Yeah, ramen is definitely only good at the moment haha.


  3. Wow I feel terrible for the children and it's really hard for me to believe parents can act so hostile just after a few years after giving birth..
    I really admire you and positive attitude. Please keep posting, I'll be visiting often! :) Take care

  4. Lauren -

    Jennie here with a question: How did you do your cool link to Planet Cancer? I just set up my Planet profile today and can't figure it out (I'm a major technophobe!). If you can post a comment to my blog with the answer or email me at my blog email, that would be great!

    BTW, congrats to you and your mom for being early for treatment. My mom and I are always rolling in late too!