Saturday, January 16, 2010

Boredom Isn't a Bad Thing

Chemo 15 is a good night's sleep away from being over. It's been a pretty good week, but that's not entirely surprising. Chemo is very predictable and, aside from a few vomiting incidents and poop with an epic stink, simply not that exciting. Having said that, there's a few things that I've noticed that are different from chemo #1 through chemo #13 (the ones that I've had a part):

The Boy has started working on his colors, and working quite diligently. (Note the sorting of blocks by color above.) He's trying to identify the color of almost everything that he touches: pencils, crayons, paper, blocks and legos, foods, clothes. He doesn't always get it right; he has a tendency to mix up red with blue, to forget the name of yellow, and to call purple blue. His favorite color seems to be brown, as that is the preferred color of crayons and pencils that he takes as well as construction paper.

The Boy REALLY knows the names of musical instruments, even those that are cartoon caricatures. When watching "Zin Zin Zin" or "Tubby the Tuba" (the original 1947 one, natch) or "Fantasia" or whatever, he's right on the money when it comes to identifying violins, cellos, basses, flutes, oboes, saxophones, bassoons, trumpets, trombones, French horns, and tubas. The drums he confuses a little bit, and he tends to mix up clarinets and oboes.

This GFR test is really, really interesting. I echo Logical Mommy's assertion of "why have we been in treatment for more than 18 months and only NOW hearing about this," and "why have we been in treatment for more than 18 months and only had cytoxin and carboplatin levels adjusted once or twice?" Dr. Graves told us that he would be doing a GFR until further notice at the start of every chemo and adjusting accordingly.

For this chemo, The Boy did almost no playing in the hospital room. Instead, he walked (or was carried) to the playroom several times per day, totalling several hours each day. This was nice, as the room never got messy, and somebody else cleaned up / cleaned all of the toys. (I hope.) It's leading us to seriously reconsider what we need to bring back and forth to the hospital for each visit. Definites: books (even though he won't let us read to him yet, that'll change), some puzzle-type things (current favorite is an aleph-bet puzzle to learn his Hebrew), iPod cord, iPod, little refrigerator, booster seat. Pretty much, everything else has an analogue in the playroom. I'd need to check, but I guess that if The Boy was sick, we'd just borrow toys / crayons / paper from the playroom and keep it in our room until we were done.

Younger Bro is very cute and has a nice sense of humor. This morning, at 6:15, he decided that he wanted to get Daddy. So, he turned himself, grabbed my pajama sleeve, and pulled himself towards me. When he got to my arm, he started chewing. Not satisfied, he grabbed the pajama top and pulled himself to withing chewing distance of my shoulder and side. The whole time, he was grinning madly and squealing at me. Little stinker knew that he was messing with me, and he was enjoying every minute of it. It's interesting how different he is from his brother. For one thing, he spends lots more time chewing on sheets and pillows than The Boy did. For another, he LOVES LOVES LOVES to squeal and squeak in a super-high register. He's lots more vocal than The Boy was; not that The Boy was silent, but Younger Bro tops him pretty strongly. YB is also fascinated by watching The Boy every chance he gets, and YB still wants to chew on him whenever possible.

That boy loves his chewing.

Reading an electronic book on an iPhone is a little bit of a pain, but I'm not willing - at this point - to shell out money and carrying-room space for a Kindle or a Sony Reader. I'm also not looking at the mythical and assumed Apple iTablet as a solution to this, because that stuff won't fit into my pocket for hospital time. The portability of the iPhone, at this time, wins over the ease of reading on a Kindle and what I assume from the iTablet or iSlate or whatever they're calling it.

The book is currently Carl Sagan's "Contact." The music is the Ambassadors of Harmony's album "Applause." The tv show of choice is the first two episodes of this season of "Chuck." The Boy's current favorite show is "Tubby the Tuba."

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