The Boy had a pretty good day today. He wasn't sick, he ate and drank reasonably well with Ms. R., and he was fun and playful when I arrived home. The doctors and nurses indicated that for him to show side effects for longer than a week after chemotherapy is rare.
I've been tossing around the possibility of taking some time off from work to take care of The Boy, since it does seem like I miss a lot of work due to expected or unexpected doctor/hospital visits. I discussed it with my mother and my sister, who say that it isn't necessary. Musical Daddy likes the idea except that it would entail him taking on more outside work, meaning more time away from home, and leaving me with The Boy. And I talked about it with two of my colleagues, who pretty much said that while I ultimately need to do what's best for my family, there isn't a problem covering for me when I do need to be out.
If this is going to be the pattern, that The Boy will have 5 days to a week of sickness after chemo, then here's what we're looking at:
4 more chemo treatments (YAY!). Probably October 23 (Thursday) for DOX/VNC, November 13 (Thursday) for AMD/VNC, December 4 (Thursday) for DOX/VNC, and December 26 (Friday) for AMD/VNC. That's assuming that his counts are good enough to get chemo, which they may not be, but all that does is bump the dates back a bit. Scratching the last chemo because it takes place over Winter Break and we'll be home with him anyway, that makes 3 more weeks that could potentially be like the one that we just had, with the sickness and such. With one, possibly two, treatment center or hospital visits in addition to the ones that will be scheduled.
And of course, the surgery, which may take place next week.
It's a lot, but I guess when I think of it in those terms, it isn't too bad. The only thing that I need to do, that we need to do, is to go with my first instinct. If The Boy seems sick, I should just stay home with him, let him nurse all day, and that's that. Last week's hospital stay possibly could have been avoided had I either stayed home with him or brought him in to the center first thing in the morning. Because, you see, even though we usually have to wait for things at the center, they don't shut us in a room and ignore us, which is what wasted so much time in the ER last week.
Furthermore, I think that I'll go back to pumping if I have to but only during weeks when he is sick or is expected to be so. May not be necessary as I'll build up a stash while The Boy recovers from surgery. Don't forget that since he nurses all night, ounce-for-ounce he's getting as much milk as he would if he were sleeping through the night. He's just mostly schoolday-weaned.