Today started out hard. Cassie was very teary and cried at everything…including when I looked at her. She is extremely homesick and just wants to get out of here already. I decided that we would do another field trip down to the ‘Healing Garden’ for some fresh air and some freedom from our 9th floor room. Sure it has a decent view and cheery yellow walls, but those walls become like jail doors after a while.
We got Cassie into her wheelchair and got all of her hookups on board and then we were off. It was warm outside (86 degrees) but the sun and warmth felt nice. For me, a big part of this stay feels like being trapped. Sure I could go anywhere I want really, but I can’t leave the room without feeling like I’m abandoning Cassie. I know I’m not really, and I do go out a couple times a day, but I feel like we are in this together so we need to stick together.
Once out in the garden, I sat on one of the benches and pulled Cassie up in front of me. We talked about how we both want to go home. About how going home is our main goal. We also talked about all the little goals that are inbetween this moment and actually going home. Eating solids again, getting rid of the tubes, being able to get out of bed and move on our own some. We discussed how meeting all those little goals move us toward achieving our big goal and we can’t skip over the little ones just because we want the big one. I told her that the doctors are not going to send us home early just to have us end up turning around and coming back because she wasn’t physically ready to go home.
Cassie understood what I was saying. Whether or not she liked what I said remains to be seen, but she understood.
Tonight Cassie passed one of the mini goals in our path. She ate solid food. I have to tell you that I was extremely nervous about it. It is a big deal to put food back on your belly after so long. It’s been about 5 days since she had eaten. Only 2 days ago she was allowed to start having little sips of water or apple juice. This morning whe was allowed to have unlimited clear liquids with the possibility of real food at supper if all went well. We hoped. And then supper time came, the nurse paged the doctor with our question, and we were given the go ahead.
Scrambled eggs were chosen to be the first food. As Cassie lifted her fork holding some egg to her mouth she just smiled. I watched to see what would come next. I have to say…I’ve never seen anyone look so satisfied or savor scrambled eggs as much as she did with that first bite.
I reminded her to go slow because we didn’t want to go backwards to clear liquids again. I’m so proud that she listened and went slow and at the same time, finished the whole serving of eggs. We both are proud of the fact that she never got nauseous and her stomach accepted the eggs with as much pleasure that Cassie took in eating them.
When you’ve been in ‘the joint’ (aka hospital) as long as we have you begin to take pride in the little things.
***I’d like to note that we haven’t been here long at all when you take into consideration the time that some families have to put in here.