Gavin's recent medical appointments all happened to fall on Thursday and Friday. It was a bit of a whirlwind. Nothing compared to the old days though.
The oncologist is, of course, pleased with Gavin's progress. I had to chuckle during our appointment. My questions these days are so very different (and much fewer) than before. The doctor and I just marveled at how far Gavin has come. Going to that clinic is still a bit surreal for me. Kids just shouldn't get cancer. Sitting in the waiting room, memories flood back to me. I can vividly picture us sitting over on the other side of the clinic with a mask on Gavin's face, protecting him while his immune system was suppressed, wondering if he would be admitted that day into the hospital or if we might get another night at home. He was sick as a dog and Jeff and I were doing our best to keep our heads above water each day. Life was so different back then and we are forever changed because of it. We are blessed to be where we are and we know all too well how precious life really is.
We met with Gavin's ophthalmologist (eye doctor) Thursday afternoon. She is extremely pleased with how well his eyes are healing up. Laser surgery has been scheduled for another six weeks or so from now so that his eyes will be fully healed. The laser is intended to clean up remaining cataracts. She was able to give us a new prescription for glasses in the meantime. It may change slightly after the laser surgery, but not too much. We are happy to order the new glasses, even if we need to switch after laser surgery again. Gavin will have to go to school for the first week or so without a prescription, which will stink because he cannot see well at all right now. But there's no way around it. He will need progressive bifocals because of the artificial lenses he got through cataract surgery. We hear kids transition much easier into those than adults. I am praying that is the case. His ophthalmologist also lifted the physical restrictions Gavin had after his eye surgery. Gavin is elated about that. He has been running all over the place. Last night he was doing laps around the house shouting, "I can run again at last!!!" It's nice to see him so excited about it. Friday brought a trip to the dentist for both boys and a visit with Gavin's endocrinologist. Neither boy had cavities. Gavin had a sealant put on permanent molar to hopefully prevent some cavities. Normal stuff. ;) Gavin's cancer treatments put him at an increased risk for dental decay, so I'm always happy to hear that his teeth are doing well. And then there was a trip to the endocrinologist. He is the one in charge of Gavin's growth hormone shots. He and I had a lengthy chat about Gavin's weight. Gavin has grown 3 cm since our last appointment, but he is not gaining weight. So he just gets skinnier and skinnier. Jeff and I were skinny kids, so we expect it a little. But not like this. His appetite has decreased significantly in the last 4-6 weeks, which has been a problem. If he doesn't start gaining weight soon, his growth hormone shots will be negated and he will quit growing as well. We discussed a number of factors that could be the cause for the decreased appetite. We will be trying a few things to see if we can beef him up a bit, including increasing his growth hormone dose.
The boys start school in a few days. I will try to post some back to school pics soon thereafter. For those of you with kids heading to school as well, I hope they have a great year. Remember how blessed you are to have kids growing up so fast, even if it makes you a little sad to see them grow. I know too many moms and dads that are painfully reminded each year when school starts that their child isn't here to do that. And that brings me to my last thought. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Expect to see a lot from me on it this year. We have got to do a better job of increasing awareness for childhood cancer. It's taking too many of our kids. Increased awareness = increased funding for the research necessary to beat childhood cancer once and for all. And I think we would all agree that it's about time. These kids need our help.