For a long time cancer was just a part of my life and it didn’t seem like a big deal. We switched from chemo to radiation for a while. I always got better for a while but the cancer always found a way back inside. I still got to go to school a lot and even got to have my port out for a while. I got to do regular things sometimes like soccer and gymnastics. I loved school, well not really the learning part but the friends part. I had sleepovers whenever I could and made a best friend, Addie. Addie and I did everything together. Even if I had to be in the hospital she would come visit and whenever my hair started to fall out she would shave her head. In the summers she got to come to cancer survivor camp with me. Being at camp made me feel just like the kids I saw on tv and I loved it.
I loved a lot of things about my life, actually. I told momma once that maybe since I had a kid’s cancer that mine would go away if I made it to be a grown up. She said that was a good thing for us to hope for. That was kinda what I kept thinking – that I’d just keep fighting cancer until I was a grown up and then I wouldn’t have to have it anymore. I never thought anything worse about it until I turned ten. That’s when I stopped being able to walk and that’s when I told momma the thing.
One Friday morning momma took me and Carter to the bus stop like always and it was just like a regular day. My hip starting hurting a little at school and by the time I got home I could hardly walk. I was limping and crying so my grandma called momma to come home from work. That night momma took me to the Emergency Room but they said they couldn’t really tell from the pictures what was wrong.
The next day the pain got a lot worse. We still had the walker I had used after Stem Cell and so daddy got it out of the attic. That’s the only way I could get around because my hip was hurting so bad. I mostly just laid on the couch because moving at all made me cry. By Sunday morning I couldn’t even sit up without my hip hurting. It was the worst pain I had ever felt. None of the medicines were helping so momma decided to drive me to our regular hospital in Cincinnati. We had to prop up my leg real straight in the car and I still cried the whole way. For two hours I cried and sometimes I screamed for her to make it stop. Momma told me to squeeze her hand when it hurt but I squeezed too hard and pushed my nails in. When we got there her hand was bleeding real bad.
We had to go to that ER before we could see our regular doctors and when momma carried me in screaming we didn’t even have to wait in the lobby. They took me back right away and got me pain medicine. They just kept giving me more and it didn’t work but made me real sleepy. Finally I just cried myself to sleep.
When I woke up we were in a regular room on my regular floor. I was glad to be in a place I knew but as soon as I tried to sit up my hip started hurting and I started crying again. Doctors kept coming in and out and momma was just crying and yelling at them to do something. They finally hooked me up to a pain pump but no matter how many times I pressed the button the pain was still there. All the medicine just made me sleep but the pain would never go away.
That night momma and I was finally alone in my room. We were both crying a lot and she was snuggled up with me in my bed. That’s when I told her the thing. I said: momma, I don’t think I can do this anymore. Momma just started praying and she put her hand on my leg. The hand that I made bleed.