Yesterday, Jodi and I had a meeting with one of the doctors from the Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) unit. It was a length, two-hour meeting involving details about all of the medications Caemon will be receiving, including the chemotherapy regimen, as well as any of the complications that can arise from these medications. Some of the complications are immediate, while others are more long-term, but needless to say, it was all a bit overwhelming. In many ways, however, there was a greater sense of relief in knowing what we can expect and knowing that this team has a plan for absolutely every turn of events. They have plans and backup plans, and they know what they do so very well that they are able to avoid many of the complications that were commonplace not long ago. All of this is reassuring given the risky nature of the BMT process.
We learned, too, that the twenty-four-year-old woman is definitely going forward as the donor. She is somewhere in the United States (although it is not uncommon to have international donors), so on the day they harvest her marrow (probably the day before Caemon’s transplant), a courier will fly with the marrow, and bring it to us. I can’t help thinking about what this young woman must be feeling about this, but I hope one day we can meet her and thank her for the most precious gift anyone could give us: saving our son’s life.
Tomorrow, Caemon will go in for another bone marrow biopsy and another test of his spinal fluid. The poor boy will have to go without food the entire day tomorrow, as they have scheduled him for a 4:00 surgery. We have a little lie we tell Caemon on days like this, as it seems the hospital occasionally just runs out of food. We don’t know why it happens or why they are suddenly able to replenish their supplies after Caemon visits the “warm room” (his term for the operating room), but no-food days often result in frequent “calls” to the kitchen to inquire whether the hospital chefs have returned from the grocery store. How long our little ruse will continue to work, I do not know, but at least his parents and care providers don’t have to be the bad guys who keep him from eating.
After tomorrow’s adventures, if his counts come up more, we may have the opportunity to go home for the weekend. There was some talk yesterday that we might try to push his BMT admission back a week, but it appears that the oncologist and the BMT doctors have come to a consensus that next week is still the week. Whether we come in Monday or another day is yet to be determined, but for now, we are sticking to the rough schedule that was laid out for us.