By Mary Meyer
said Lucy’s Mom, Mary. Neither slept. Lucy’s pain was too intense for sleep. They await the morning call from the doctor. Will this be an outpatient visit or hospital stay? The family is put on notice for help with siblings.
Lucy’s eyes once bright blue, like a sparkling pool on a sunny day, are dimmer now. Life changed dramatically for the family when they received the news Lucy had an aggressive form of cancer. Just 7 years old, and the youngest of 4 children, life is now centered around juggling Lucy’s hospital trips. Isolation for the whole family so they “practice safety”.
The other children feel their parents are divorced as rarely are mom and dad together anymore. Hospital stays are too frequent and allow only one parent at a time, no other family members are allowed. COVID-19 requirements are common-place for these families.
Lucy’s siblings get excited when they get to attend a Wipe Out Kids’ Cancer Warrior Family Event, because other families are like their family, living with cancer. Children with bald heads and face masks are common for these families. They live with vigilant precautions, and most travel with bags packed with medicine and overnight clothes, just in case. Fevers are common and can be life-threatening.
Sibling can’t socialize with friends or leave the house in case they bring something contagious home. They live in isolation, a constant state of alertness, constant cleaning, and fear that even a slight cold might be fatal. What will the day bring? Will it be a good day for Lucy, or bad? They never know. Birthday parties are planned while hoping they don’t have a last-minute emergency.
Warrior Families live in a constant state of alertness, the uncertainty of what the day brings takes a toll on everyone.
Will the family get to be together on Mother’s Day? Like most days, we will just wait and see how Lucy feels.