Besides the memory of last time, which this time I am demanding that I keep holding her until she falls asleep and then they can strap her down, I am excited to see the results. From her scans they are able to build a three dimensional model of Bettie and measure Bettie's volume. And then the next week we will be able to compare the volume of the first scan to the volume of this second scan. This will be a much more accurate measurement since the measurements taken with a tape measure each week are prone to human error. I can't wait to hear the official measurements!
Just when I get all excited about how things are progressing it seems that some stranger is always quick to remind me that we still have a ways to go. Like yesterday, we were waiting for our car to be pulled around at the hospital when a little boy across from us in the waiting area, probably 11 or 12, says, "Boy...she sure does have some big cheeks." And although I know he meant no harm and he followed it up by continuing to stare at her in admiration and amusement and saying, "She sure is cute." I still could not help but feel a little sting. But the stinging is getting a lot better than the first few weeks. Instead of feeling like drop kicking the kid on the spot, or just saying. "It's a tumor." And hoping he'd feel awful for asking I instead said,"It's a tumor. That's why we come here." Simple, truthful, and honest. And I was able to say it with a smile. My sadness of wishing Addison had a "normal" infancy is quickly being replaced with an on fire desire to educate people around us about hemangiomas. Educate them with the hopes that they will pass on the info. or themselves benefit from knowing that there are treatment options...you don't just have to wait.
And on a happy note. We are quickly teaching all the staff at CHW what a tunic versus a dress is. Addison's outfits are always a topic of conversation and I will confess right here that I contemplate each week what outfit she will wear on treatment day and always dress her to the nines. The last two weeks she has worn tunic with leggings. Each week people comment on her darling dress which last week Ryan was quick to inform the nurse that it was a tunic not a dress as he had learned earlier that morning. So this week that same nurse came in and brought up what a cute tunic she was wearing this week, she's a quick study. From there it went on and on with various members of the staff until our research fellow, Anna, challenged Dr. Drolet to name what Addison was wearing. She was quickly reprimanded for thinking it was dress. It's fun conversations and such a friendly environment like this that make us so thankful that Addison in being treated at CHW. We keep remarking, "Everyone is SO nice."
Addison is also a star when it comes to receiving her treatment and getting her dressing changes. Most appointments she falls asleep at least a couple of times during the appointment. This week was no different, she fell asleep right on the table during her dressing change. Everyone comments on how calm she is and how she's so easy, she doesn't squirm or whip her arm around like a lot of the kids. Of course we can' t help but smile at a compliment like that.