Today is a day with a whole lot of nothing to report, unfortunately (although Dr. Ash would say, "It's boring! How fantastic! That's what we like to see is boring patients!"). My nurse woke me up to tell me that I would be getting both a platelet and a blood transfusion, so I knew my counts were still down. And the day went on from there. Colten spiked a fever yesterday (which appears to have just been a 24 hour bug, because he feels much better), so to be on the safe side he and Rora did not come visit today. It was a very long, boring (yay!) day.
The bone pain from the Neupogen shots they give me every day is starting to intensify. While it makes sleeping and getting around a pain (literally), that means my body is revving up and making cells, so hopefully some magic starts happening here soon. As a special treat, my stomach started bleeding nonstop tonight. This is funny to me because it is bleeding from a shot I got earlier today that keeps your blood from clotting (blood clots are a worry during transplants). Seems like a failed plan to me. Of course it is just a tiny hole from a little needle, but you'd be amazed how much blood that can produce when it just won't stop. I think I'll be sleeping with band aids by the bed.
Otherwise, I am just tired, sore, and sick of being here. I had the same doctor today who originally told me he expected that I would come through this transplant with flying colors due to my track record with transplants. He's a nice guy. I like his upbeat and yet hands-off attitude. If I am doing well, he leaves me alone. He told me I am right on track for getting out in 21 days, and it is 21 days post-transplant, not total. Apparently, for some patients, everything before the transplant is done outpatient, and so it is not considered in the total hospital time. I am a "high risk" because of how much crap I have already done, so I wasn't that lucky. Ah, well. Anyway, he said for haplo patients that the blood counts take a bit and then they just shoot up, so any day now things will start jumping. Just so that it is published and I can be held accountable, my goal is to be out of here by next Tuesday (not that I have any control over it, but it helps to pretend, so go with me on this). That gets me out in 20 days post-transplant, and that's above average, so I'm happy with it. One more week. An instant that stretches out like an eternity.
The bright spot in my day was a huge stack of cards and letters. The nurse told me I am the most popular patient on the floor. I'm good with it. :-) I loved reading every single one. My Great Aunt Wilma sent me a letter telling me about how she spends her days with her sisters and brother. She misses my grandma a lot, though. My mom's mom had a really amazing family. All her siblings live around the block from each other. Literally. They live on four roads that make a square block. I'll never forget going back to visit my grandma and listening to all her siblings talk about the "good old days," and just getting to watch them all still together. I wish for a life like that.
I also got tons of letters from missionaries around the world. These are always fun for me because I have never met any of them, but they take the time to write me and pray for me. It's also fun to see how spread out the army of God is. My favorite letters, I must admit, are from kids. Today I got a card from my California family and inside I was given the gift of laughter. One of the neighboring families my Cali family has adopted as family (wow, my tongue feels tied) has some cute little kids that bestowed upon me a beautiful picture of angels watching over me (I have three of my own) and absolutely hilarious hospital comic strips. One comic strip says, "This is what happens if you give a kid a shot," and it shows a picture of a very angry person holding a shot and saying, "I better be paid!" I am not sure if this is the child demanding payment or the nurse, but either way, it's funny stuff. Another comic says, "This is what happens if you get a bad patient," and it shows a picture of an angry patient laying on a bed screaming, "You're supposed to be a doctor!" This, to me, was the funniest one of all, and so well captured how I feel most days here. I guess I am a bad patient. ;-) I hope the little artists don't mind me sharing their work.
I found a quote today by Edith Wharton that my aunt gave me on a little plaque a long time ago. I used to have it up in my room and I have always remembered it, "There are two ways of spreading light, to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it." My mom-in-law is a super ray of sunshine. She's one of those people that is always positive and happy, regardless of the circumstances. Today she wrote me and suggested that I try and look for someone to lift up while "taking my laps." I don't know if I achieved being the candle or the mirror, but my goal for the rest of my time here is to be a light to anyone around me, even if I would rather kick them in hurtful places. :-) Besides, those that give light can't help but have light themselves, and I sure could use it. Come on Day +13, let's be the day!