Saturday, January 29, 2011

Amelia Walks

Ameila has started walking.  She's been taking steps since early December, but now she is really walking all over the place.  I've barely seen her crawl in the past three days.  It's so funny to have her follow me all over the house.  She has really good balance and she doesn't want or need anyone's help.  We are working to plan her first birthday party now.  The place I wanted to rent is booked so now we are trying to decide whether or not to have everyone at our house.  It's just too small for a big inside gathering with both sides of the family.  I have to order the invitations tomorrow, so we will have to make up our minds tonight.  Amelia is beautiful and sweet, but she is also spoiled rotten.  She is definately the baby of the family and we ALL are guilty of babying her too much.  She wants to sleep with us every night.  In fact, she won't go to sleep unless one of us is lying down with her.  We put her in her bed once she's asleep and she gets back in the bed with us in the middle of the night. 

Losing Jordan

I am going to take this posting slowly.  It might take me weeks to completely add to it.  Today has been a month since the day we found out for certain that Jordan would lose the fight of her life and that we would lose her.  It was a real privaledge to be the aunt of this amazing young lady.  She was so full of life and energy and love...right up to the last moments of her life. 

On Tuesday, January 4, 2011 I met Jordan, Rustie, Mom, Jace, Mema Shirley and Papa Don at Children's for Jordan's regular round of Chemo.  Typically, Rustie would go to this alone, but with the way Jordan had been acting and feeling over the days leading up to the appointment, we knew we all needed to be there.  In my heart, I knew exactly what the doctors would tell us and so did Jordan.  Her stomach was swollen and distended from fluid and her back was beginning to hurt.  Just two weeks prior, the discovery was made that she had two tumors in her brain:  one on the left frontal lobe and one in the center of the right hemisphere.  The right one was inoperable.  It had become clear that the disease had spread to her liver with each passing day, though the doctors could never 100% confirm this.  The ultrasound tech couldn't actually see it, but we all knew it was there.  When the doctor came in to exam Jordan and to get her ready for the next round of chemo, Jordan immediately began to cry.  She did not want me to see her stomach.  She knew that the moment I saw it, I would know what she already knew.  She grabbed my hand and through streaming tears, she said, "I am scared they are going to give me more bad news.  I don't want more bad news.  I'm already so sick."  My heart broke completely into as we lifted her shirt and I looked at my beautiful niece.  She stared right at me to see what my reaction would be and I just smiled at her and told her that the doctors had already explained this was probably fluid and we should let them tell us what was next.  The doctor explained to Jordan that they would do an ultrasound to see what was going on in her belly, but that it did appear to be fluid.  She went on to tell her that they would not be able to do chemo that day because her platelett counts were too low.  Rustie followed the doctor from the room and I held Jordan's hand.  I was so torn.  I knew that I really needed to be with Rustie because she was about to hear the worst news of her life, but Jordan was holding on so tightly to my hand.  We spent the next half hour talking about her trip to the American Girl store.  My mom and Jace came back into the room, just as Rustie stuck her hand in and motioned for me to come out.  She fell into my arms the minute we were out of sight and a nurse ushered us into a room where we could talk.  For the next three days, I would be in and out of shock as I came to terms with what this all meant.  The doctors would stop all treatment and Jordan would be moved to the care of Hospice.  We would likely have about two weeks with her.  It seemed so cruel to suddenly have such a small sliver of time left to spend with someone you love so much.  Just knowing that in a matter of days, they would no longer be there to talk laugh love.  I knew I had to tell my Mom, but it would be a couple of hours before I could get her alone to talk to her.  I called Adam and Kim.  Rustie called Chad and Heather.  We cried until I thought my head would explode, but we laughed just as hard.  Every moment that we were in the room with Jordan over the next couple of days, we laughed.  We told her all the stories that she was always too young to hear.  We told her about sneaking into bars when we teenagers.  Kim took most of the blame for these occasions because she was older and because she was sitting in the family room with Mom and Mema and wasn't in the room to defend herself.  We laughed...Jordan laughed....she laughed so hard she asked us to stop telling her things that were so hurt to laugh.  It hurt to see her laugh.  It hurt so much to think that with each round of laughter, I was trying so hard to memorize the make sure that no matter how old I lived to be, I would never forget the delightful sound of her laughter. 

(Taking a break...will post more later)

Christmas 2010

Amelia's first Christmas.  I will update later complete with pictures.