Free at Last, Free at Last

Dec 7 2009

As we had feared, Mr Garnett came to see us on Saturday morning to break it to use that we would be staying for at least another week.....

As we had feared, Mr Garnett came to see us on Saturday morning to break it to use that we would be staying for at least another week.  As Chemotherapy was due to start on Tuesday anyway it made sense just to plough through and to ensure that Camille had been given a long enough course of antibiotics to clear the infection.

Hayley went home on Saturday night with Lucia so they could have one of their girlie nights watching the X-Factor. Hayley may leave the hospital in body, but she certainly doesn’t leave it in spirit. Every time Camille’s eyes blinked a tired laboured blink the phone would begin to buzz. “Is she asleep yet?” Hayley would ask each time I answered the phone. “No” I replied, with my inner monologue actually saying “Grrrrrrrrrrrrr”. I was a little concerned, as I feared that Camille would not let me watch Match of the Day if she was still awake; she does hate football. However, as Lineker cleared his throat at television centre, Camille succumbed to the tiredness and fell fast asleep.

Over the past week or two, Camille’s night terrors had come back a bit, and I was actually surprised about how much she was having them. It was probably just that she was back in hospital rather than anything else; she’s been a lot better at home in recent weeks.

On Monday we got moved from D2, the normal children’s ward, to C2, the specialist Oncology ward. We had been struggling on D2 as it didn’t have any wireless internet connection so that we could do some work. As we moved into C2, no sooner had Camille’s butt cheeks touched the bed than I had flopped into the arm chair, logged on and enjoyed some wireless heaven (work related of course).

A young lad on the ward had recently been diagnosed with a brain tumour and his family had one of those weeks this week that we all dread. His tumour was in a position that they could go in and operate immediately, so after surgery in the early part of the week, a scan revealed that he was clear from the tumour. This would normally put him in such a fantastic group but unfortunately the resulting biopsy had revealed that the tumour was a type that would almost certainly come back. The percentage given was a parent’s and patient’s worst nightmare, but if there is one thing I’ve learnt over the last six months it’s that every child is different and every case needs to be judged separately.

Friday was the World Cup draw and as Camille wanted to watch Chuggington or something equally as CBeebies, I was relegated to the BBC Website on the laptop. Carol the Ward Manager crouched alongside me as Beckham unleashed his balls into the hands of Charlize Theron, not for the first time I gather; apparently they had at least three rehearsals of the draw over the previous few days. As England drew some mediocre opposition, Carol whooped, screamed and hollered. I fear for my eardrums if I happen to be on the ward during the World Cup.

Hayley took Lucia out shopping on Saturday before their weekly girlie night. The purpose of the excursion was to buy Lucia and Camille party dresses for the Addenbrooke’s Children’s Christmas Party on the Sunday. Kick-off was due for 14:00pm and at 13:31pm exactly a nurse poked her head into our room. “I’m sorry to tell you this, but the party has been cancelled”, was the message coming from the Directors. A nasty virus was taking stock in the hospital and it was too dangerous to bring patients and external children together in a confined space. A few minutes later, a pink, sparkly and beautiful Lucia came running into the ward. She hopped, skipped and jumped  towards the bed before hearing the devastating news that the game was up, she was all dressed up with nowhere to go. The picture of Lucia sitting on a hospital chair with her bottom lip mopping the floor was a sorry sight.

Camille peaked a small temperature of 37.9 on Sunday evening which could have meant a further few days behind the paper curtains, but as I arrived on Monday morning Hayley was already packing her case. We were free, free I tell you.