Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Don't Worry, Be Happy

We had ordered some new videos that finally came yesterday and it was a good thing. Henry spent all day in bed and save for his Granya and another family friend coming by, we watched TV. The videos were not the only thing that came to cheer Henry. He received some huge balloons, one of which sang the song, "Don't Worry, Be Happy". The smile it brought was terrific.

Henry is now on a morphine drip to help ease some of the discomfort he is experiencing. He also has control of a bolus of morphine to help any more acute pain. Yesterday he was also started on his IV nutrition or TPA, as he's not been eating enough for days now. The cells in his mouth and esophagus are sloughing off due to chemotherapy and this creates a mucous abundance in his mouth. It seems uncomfortable and this seems to be causing his pain.

In the middle of the night last night he began running a fever. His antibiotics were switched to something broader to cover any infections that may be causing this reaction. We were told to expect a fever, but had skated by without one up to now.

Since we're not allowed to come home with Henry after this round of chemotherapy, arrangements have been made for us to stay at the St. Casimir House, another Believe in Tomorrow residence. Instead of telling Henry that we cannot come home, we're telling him that we get to go on vacation to this house, his images of which are likely those of their House by the Sea, a retreat house we recently stayed at in Ocean City. After we told him of this, he's now generally more fixed on going there than home, so it's been a good strategy.

Yesterday Henry also received a blood transfusion which boosted his red blood counts up significantly and will hopefully improve his energy level. It looks like he'll probably receive platelets today as his counts there are below 20, the threshold for transfusion. I expect today to be another day spent hanging out in bed, just trying to keep him comfortable.


Granya said...

The balloons were such a neat surprise - so much color, size and fun to them. Everytime Henry punched the "singing balloon", Granya danced to "Don't Worry Be Happy." Sorry you all missed it.

And Henry got a new CARS book in the mail - which we read together and tried to find the hidden items on the page.

Besides the saliva and mouth discomfort, Henry was uncomplaining, smiling, directing the nursing staff and family members and continued to be coping amazingly well.

Hope, Courage and Love prevail.

rlbates said...

Good song. Glad it made him smile. Take care.

Anonymous said...

Bryan and Granya, thx for the update. Kudos to the person who sent the singing balloon. Great idea.
Glad that Henry has the morphine to help with his pain, and that he is on TPN to give him some nutrition.
The St Casimir House sounds amazing. Had to look up what St Casimir was known for and here's a blurb from the google search. He was a prince of Poland who possessed great charms of person and character and was known for his justice. Sounds like a great guy. We are grateful for a home bearing his name to take care of Bryan and his family.
Here's to a smooth infusion of platelets.

t said...

So glad to hear you liked your balloons! Just knowing they made you smile...MAKES MY DAY!

Hang in there little H, your half way there!

Sending good wishes

Ms. T

Granya said...

Ms T - they were awesome balloons.

Anonymous said...

Bryan and Tara,
Your words are always so informative as well as comforting.
Your home away from home sounds perfect. You will get to see the trees change and the flowers poke their heads. So remember corners...life will be better just around the...
susan k