Look at the boy in front of you.
Today I took this advice. This morning, when I heard the nurses come in for shift change, I didn’t jump up to see the numbers. I stayed in bed and snuggled up to my sleeping boy instead. By the time I read the lab report, Benji had already taken his morning bath, played a round of bumper cars with the nurses, and made a few snowflakes. It was only when our nurse came in to tell me he’d have platelets delivered soon that I thought I’d better take a look.
Benji’s white blood cell count and blast percentage went up, but just a little. Things are stable, which is a beautiful exhale. Gratitude is such a relative and powerful experience. His platelets disappeared again; his count was 3,000, and he had a transfusion for the fourth morning in a row. Dr. Oshrine also ordered another enumeration test to see how Benji’s T-cells are trending. Those results weren’t back yet, but I was encouraged to see that Benji’s lymphocyte count had increased, back over 400.
The enumeration test came back in the afternoon with great results. His CD3 population has increased a little bit. We are on track for Monday’s procedure and apheresis. When I looked at the results, I saw a line on the lab report I hadn’t noticed before: Toxic Gran, present. Our nurse didn’t know what it meant either, but the attending doctor was on his way for afternoon rounds. While I waited for him I looked it up. It stands for Toxic Granulation, and googling was a mistake. I had myself all worked up into thinking Benjamin had an undetected septic organ by the time the doctor walked in. He explained that toxic granulation can be detected any time white blood cells are in distress, which clearly, Benjamin’s are. I scrolled back through Benjamin’s labs from days gone by and sure enough, the box has been checked present several times. I just hadn’t seen it. I walked away from the screen.
The boy in front of me had an awesome, active, happy, laughter filled day. We enjoyed a morning visit from Michael’s Aunt Darlene and Uncle Ken, and an afternoon visit from Uncle Dennis. We played with the pet therapy dog. Benji ambushed several nurses with silly string; huge, strategic affairs. Michael and Banyan came up as soon as work and school were over, and our dear friends brought us dinner, and filled our room with the sounds of four kids who’ve known each other since birth. Aside from some intermittent tummy pain, Benjamin felt great today. He was so tired after everyone left that he skipped his nightly bath and climbed right into bed. This kind of tired is the good kind, in my opinion.