Saturday, 21 September 2013

Defeating the Stay Puft marshmallow man

As far as infants go, putting on pounds is typically encouraged.
Maybe Dominic was just cutting weight before he arrived at the emergency room nine days ago.
That day he weighed in at 10 kilograms. Between his leukemia and all of the wackiness his body was subjected to in trying to handle it, that tiny body puffed up all the way to 11.5 kg.
To put it in perspective, imagine adding 15 per cent of your body weight in three days. The Stay Puft marshmallow man would be proud.
Part of the cause for this was extra fluids added to Dom intravenously. The idea is that as you break down the cancer, you want to flush it away.
Emphasis on flush. If you don't pee, you just retain the fluid. Dom got so bloated he could barely open his eyes any more.
At that point, doctors decided to add medicine to make him pee. It worked on and off during the first few days, as his weight fluctuated between 10.4 and 11 kg. But on Friday, the change was dramatic.
This little boy peed himself from chunky monkey down to slim and trim. Diapers were filled, pants were wet, and you changed him at your own risk. Think garden hose, folks.
It's not ordinary pee, either. Ever since they started chemo, you have to wear latex gloves while handling Dom's diapers. Or, as Trish and I like to think of it, it's toxic pee and toxic poo time! It's quite the operation as you also have to work around the handful of tubes and monitors attached to him.
As of this morning it feels as though we've got our little boy back. Last night he sat up, giggled as he tried to put his soother in my mouth and babbled like crazy. He ate some real food - a quarter of a banana - for the first time since he arrived at the hospital. And the swelling in his face went down significantly.
The MRI from Thursday shows that the problems encountered during the lumbar puncture may be solved by merely sticking the needle higher than usual in the back. Doctors were encouraged by this finding and so are we.
It feels like he's winning the fight. But it's only the first round. You don't enter this ring expecting an early knockout.


  1. I am following your story and saying prayers for all of you guys.
    I hope to meet you soon to take those picture Erin and I talked about.
    Thank you for keeping us up to date during this tough time.
    Stay positive, give lots of cuddles and keep those gloves on!
    Take care!