The first round of chemo I had over the summer made me real sick. I had come to the hospital for a week because of how sick I was. At home I didn’t have any energy to get up off the couch and I was throwing up a lot. Throwing up didn’t hurt so bad as it used to because I didn’t have sores in my throat anymore. So I didn’t really think it was that big of deal. But since I couldn’t eat or drink much without throwing it back up they wanted to put me in the hospital and start feeding me through my blood again.
Momma and daddy talked and decided they didn’t want me to have to keep doing a chemo that made me so sick. They said I had already spent a lot of time in the hospital and they wanted me to be able to be home more and do more stuff that other kids do. That’s when everything got real confusing. They had to do scans because we wanted to stop the chemo and the scans showed I didn’t really have cancer anymore. Everyone was crying but momma said they were crying good tears. She said there was still a spot there but that it wasn’t cancer and now we were just going to be able to do chemos at home that wouldn’t make me so sick. I didn’t really understand how cancer could just show up and how cancer could just go away. And didn’t really understand why people cried when it did either.
Still, I was excited to not have to be so sick again. That summer I got to have a lot of fun. We still did a chemo at home, even though I didn’t think you needed chemo if you didn’t have cancer, but momma said it was to keep the cancer from coming back. I had to have labs done every week but that wasn’t bad. The nurse would come to our house and access my port. Having my port accessed was not fun. Momma would put cream on it before the nurse would come and that made my skin not be able to feel the needle. The thing was, the needle went in real deep and sometimes they had to dig around with it. I would usually cry about that. I tried not to cry about a needle now that I was seven but sometimes it just hurt too bad and I couldn’t help it. But what I found out was that if you pinched yourself while they put the needle in then it didn’t hurt so bad. So I started pinching myself everytime they accessed my port. I’d still get tears in my eyes but if I pushed harder I could make them go away.
I got to go to second grade when school started and I was real excited. Since they had first told me about the cancer this time I didn’t know how much of school I would be able to go to. But since it sorta went a way I got to go a lot and that was more fun than going to the hospital or throwing up on the couch.
I found something out that fall that made me real sad. Momma and I were talking about Christmas one night and presents and she told me that presents weren’t the most important part. I said that I knew that. But then she told me that some people didn’t get presents at all and I had never thought about that. She said we should be thankful for everything we had because some people didn’t have anything. Not even beds or blankets or home. She had seen people with no homes before and I was real mad that she didn’t bring them to our house. But momma said you couldn’t do that. She said people didn’t want to come to our house but they wanted to try to find a way to have homes for themselves. I cried that night because I was so sad that there were people outside in the cold. I told momma we atleast had to bring them blankets.
Momma kept saying we were gonna take the people with no homes blankets but she kept forgetting or being too busy at work. I would forget sometimes too but at night when I would lay in my bed and be all warm under my blankets I would think about those peoople. And I would think how sad it would be to not have a home. But I just kept telling momma and daddy about it and I figured I wouldn’t stop until they let me take them blankets.
On December 23rd we finally go to do it. Momma said that was the day we had found out four years ago that I had cancer. And she said she wanted to make it a good day for other people by doing something that was real important to me. So we wrapped up all the blankets in ribbon (even though it was raining so it all got we) and I signed Christmas tags for each one. Then momma, daddy, Carter and I all went down to the city and passed them out with cheeseburgers too. I don’t know if the people with no homes were more excited about the blankets or the cheeseburgers. Some of the people we met gave me a hug and some of them said they were real thankful for me thinking of them. I was just glad we could help them.