"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace." Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
Talitha gets very nervous when doctors or nurses come at her to do procedures or anything else that is not routine. Such was the case today with the echocardiogram and EKG. The procedure reminds me of an ultrasound only you're looking at the heart instead of the womb.
She gets nervous and whimpers but is quick to be calmed when reassured by Audrey or me. It's nice to be able to be right there with her most all of the time. The exceptions, of course, are when there's a surgery situation or a need for sedation like with the regular hearing tests. I was able to hold Talitha as they injected a general anesthesia into her central line. She was unconscious in less than a minute at which point they had me lay her on the surgical bed and leave the room.
Yesterday's and today's tests and scans have been encouraging. The MRI is showing that her brain and spine areas do not have new tumor growth; the heart tests appear to be normal; the hearing test is improved over the last one with still some issues related to fluid in the ear but no loss of hearing in the upper registery--the place most commonly impacted by chemo. The spinal fluid from today's lumbar puncture/spinal tap will be evaluated and we'll know in a week if the therapy has been successful at eliminating the free-floating cancer seed cells.
As much as Talitha likes to be reassured when facing the near constant probes, prods, and pricks, we've noticed that she in turn tries to reassure her parents or siblings when she senses any of us are having a trying moment. When one of us cries and she sees it, she will look in our eyes or give us a hug or in some way try to be a support to us. This doesn't happen all the time but when we've noticed it lately, it's pretty touching...and effective.
Reminds me that we're all in this together. Some days we're the ones providing comfort and support. Some days we're the ones receiving support and comfort. In both cases, God's hand is manifest and heaven is a little closer.