A Very Merry Christmas

December 28, 2009

Thank you for all the prayers and good wishes for our Christmas travel. We did make it to my parents’ house in Atlanta on Christmas Eve and had a great time. My brother’s girls are 9 and 5, so Tanner was in heaven – two playmates for three straight days. Jake developed quite an attachment to my neice, Mary Mike, the 9-year-old… he was constantly asking, “Where’s that girl?”

Tanner finds a willing shoulder in her cousin, Erin, after a fun, but tiring day.

The best part of the whole weekend was that, for Tanner, I think it seemed as normal as possible. There really wasn’t anything that her cousins could do that she couldn’t. They played hard… really hard. At the end of every day, Tanner was exhausted and would come to me and ask to go to bed by 6 pm. But, she was having fun and it was a little “vacation” from the limitations of cancer. Thank you Mary Mike and Erin for giving Jake and Tanner so much love and attention!

Tanner and her new doll beds

Santa was good to the kids. In addition to an American Girl doll for Tanner and a Shake and Go Racetrack for Jake, he surprised them with a big bouncy house that Santa put up in the basement of my parents’ house. I think Mary Mike summed up their reaction best when they rounded the basement stairs and saw the 9 x 9 inflated castle… “Holy Cow!” she said!!! Needless to say, they jumped all weekend long. Great exercise for Tanner’s legs. The bouncy castle came home with us and is in the basement of our new house waiting for us to move in.

We even got to experience a little church on Christmas Eve. We found a little glass prayer chapel at the back of the church that overlooked the sanctuary and watched some of the service from there. Tanner got to wear her pretty Christmas dress and get dressed up, just like her cousins.

On our way to church

We were still all somewhat sick for the week. We were coughing and sniffing and, ironically, probably gave something to my family members who had worked so valiantly to stay healthy so we could come. My Mom is sick already.

I thought Tanner was getting better today, but this afternoon started feeling bad and we found she had a fever by bedtime. She and John are at the ER as I write this, waiting for counts to determine whether they are high enough for her to be able to get IV antibiotics and come home or whether she will have to stay. We are all unbelievably weary of this routine and, although I am trying to be grateful for the break in illness that allowed us to travel for Christmas, I just really wish we could catch a break for a while.

So, pray for her that her immune system isn’t shot from being so tired over the holidays and that she fights off whatever this is. Pray that we will have the stamina to endure more of the stress of this disease. Pray that Tanner will continue to have the will to fight.

Today, Tanner said to me, “Mom, I have a job.”

“Really?” I replied. “What is your job?” expecting to hear that she was a hairdresser or a nurse.

“I’m fighting leukemia,” she said.

Keep it up big girl… keep it up.


2 thoughts on “A Very Merry Christmas

  1. Thinking of you all. So sorry to hear Tanner is not feeling well again. Madelyn woke up with a nose that is running like a faucet so I am freaking out with this being her first “cold” during all of this. Ugggghhh. Hope she feels better soon. From one mom to another…. I am thinking of you.

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