Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The trials and tribulations of turning 8

Good morning! Well, there is good news and bad news about turning 8 and having neuroblastoma. Of course, there is the obvious - you have survived - you are 8. In the land of stage IV neuroblastoma that is quite an accomplishment. So, before I get into the bad, let's not forget that little nugget of supreme awesomeness.

The bad of turning 8 when you have had high risk neuroblastoma is that you have probably had a transplant. This, of course, probably means that you are well behind on your immunizations. Bottom-line, this means that when all of your other 8 year old friends are happily going to the doctor for check-ups and physicals, you are, instead, getting five immunizations.

Sydney was not the least bit happy.

In fact, she is not yet quite of the age to describe how she felt about this predicament so you will have to bear with me as I provide some descriptive words to describe her feelings on this subject.

It sucked!

Regardless, I am happy to say that Sydney is quickly approaching the end of her re-immunizations. In fact, in 6 months, she will receive the final 2 that will get her caught up. I am happy to report that all else went fine. Her eyesight, surprisingly (given her parents) was perfect. Her hearing went untested - go figure! Let's just suffice it to say that she would have failed, but, that was not new news to us. Her growth chart continues to track right along. She is in the 10th percentile in height and closer to the 25th percentile in weight. At first glance this may seem bad but in actuality it is pretty good. She has always been on the small side. So, the fact that she is not losing ground is the important point. Her growth rate continues to be normal. She is neither growing too slow or too fast.

Will she ultimately catch up at some point? Who knows? But again, the important distinction is that even after all that she has been through (almost 4 years of therapy) she seems to be growing at a normal pace. That is good news.

I am sure Sydney would like me to reiterate the fact that re-immunizations "suck."

With that, I am back to purpose - with a fervor!

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