Friday, October 3, 2014

September Primary Childrens Summary and Pictures

We were able to take River to Ronald McDonald home last Friday.  She was on 2 liters of Oxygen, and never ran a fever over 100 the whole time.  She was able to stay until Thursday, October 2nd. 
I went down to visit Silver Summer and Tanzi from Wednesday night to Sunday night. 
We had the greatest time!  We talked and played, laughed, cried and loved.  Summer will cry and say "you remind me of River and when I remember Rio I cry.  She loved to look at the pictures on my phone and spend some time through the pictures with "My Rivy"

It was harder for me to be at home with all of her things and our home with so many wonderful memories.  The flowers in the yard, the kitchen sink, her bed and books.
Silver's prayer:  Please father shine down on us and listen to our prayers. 
*We went to Library Time:  Normal Life!!  Cuddling together during story time, doing crafts together and playing "Go Fish!"
*We rode bikes in a subdivision on real sidewalks in full pouring rain! 
Silver said "This is the Best Day Ever!!" 
*Went swimming in the bathtub with our swimming suits on :)
*Summer:  "Jesus will protect River"
*Went to Kanab homecoming parade and girls got to get candy!
*I took Silver and Summer to Zumba - It was Summer's first time:  "I'm 4 now!!"  It was such a nice time and great release. Silver was so cute dancing to the music - the whole time and with new songs she did her very best!

While I was with the girls, River and Daddy explored the Ronald McDonald home.  It is a lovely home with wash room, huge kitchen, family rooms, a meditation room, quiet places for sitting and reflecting, family rooms with books and movies.  Daddy and River went on a walk (in wheelchair) and found chestnuts. 

I took over while Daddy took girls back home.  River and I went on 2 walks outside with wheelchair.  Tuesday it was very gray and we stayed close to home so it didn't rain on us.  We did find a big chestnut tree and took a nut home.  River held it and held it.
The next day we went exploring for chestnut trees.  It was quite nippy out but we decided to get out anyway.  As soon as we got to the sidewalk the sun came out.  It warmed up and was such a beautiful day with blue skies.  We walked and walked - tricky going over the old sidewalks in a wheelchair but it was so wonderful and she was so up to the nature adventure!

She was cute noticing everything around her:  The bark of a big tree how the colors and shades were different -   The orange berries on shrubs, the windows, car colors, etc.  So very observant.
We didn't find a single chestnut tree so went back to the one we found the day before.  We picked up lots of chestnuts to make checker pieces out of.  We also found chestnut pods - one held 2 chestnuts and the other had 3 chestnuts in it.  One of them was so pretty with wood grain.  

Silver and Summer were so cute with River on their visit!  They were very good girls, very quiet and very thoughtful.  We ate meals in the big kitchen together and they were so excited about the pop machine with lots of pop choices for $.25!  We watched tv in the big family room and read books together.  They loved taking turns in Rivy's wheelchair and thought that was great fun.  It is really fun when we all get to sleep in the same room together.  Silver and Summer made "nests" on the floor and cuddled together.  

We also moved rooms while Silver and Summer were here with us.  We have the most lovely room at the Ronald McDonald house with large windows!  It is a relaxing haven of peace amid uncertainty and grief.  We lovingly call it "Home"

River with her doctor kit.  They gave her a doll to make a face/hair on with a bag of nurse equipment.  River put red tape on syringe - for taking blood.  On the doll's tummy you see a medical cup upside down.  She had decorated it to look like a heart that they checked on an ultrasound with red and blue veins and arteries.  Daddy is holding an empty water bottle that represents her iv bags.  Very creative.  She enjoyed sharing with her sisters their dolls and teaching them what everything does.

Cap from Kanab Tennis :)

Oxygen in her nose.  Buck on the wall - underneath buck is River and Daddy with their deer last fall.

Before she got her g-tube.  She can no longer sleep on her side.  Her right side has her port for IVs and blood draws.  The left side has her g-tube.  Oh how grateful we are for the g-tube!  She hasn't been able to eat or drink much at all for the last 29 days! Some days she tries a bit of an orange or a sip of pop.  My definition of "great day" has drastically changed.  Our GREATEST day of eating included 2 small sips of water, a couple licks of popsicle and a sucker. 
It took a few days for g-tube to heal enough to put water through.  It started bleeding a lot and had to give it another few days rest.  Chemo targets fast-growing cells.  It kills the good right along with the bad.  The entire tube from mouth to the other end - she has had a very sore throat and has a hard time even swallowing spit.  She says "I figured it out!  When I push on my chest like this it helps me and is a bit easier to swallow!"  The sides of her mouth on the creases at the sides of the lips was cracked and sore.  Canker sores in her mouth.
Intense Nausea...vomiting...diahrea...We found that a fan helps with nausea.  Just having that cool breeze on your face does feel good.  We like foot baths and smelling spearmint :)  Orange and Spearmint are such cheery smells!

*Bathroom breaks are tricky with how much fluids they are pumping into her to flush the chemo - she needs to go often and a lot!  SO many cords going into her!  3 IV lines for fluids, chemo, etc.  G tube for feeding, electric cord (for feed tree), and chest tube cords with multiple lines going to a box to collect fluid.  It would wipe her out completely to get up to go potty.
*A lot was thrown at her at once:  Pain from tumor, surgeries for biopsy, g-tube and port insertions, Chemo and then chest tubes.  Throw in there several x rays, ultrasounds (which are super ouchy as they have to touch the painful spots with very limited lung capacity.  Wipe out all immunity and white blood cells with several transfusions of blood and platelets.  Add in sore throats and high fevers...just to name a few of her challenges this month.

First night in the emergency room.  So brave.

River's favorite before surgeries and chemo:  Nutella, strawberries and root beer.

Before Surgery for lung-tube.

Rainbow behind daddy:  All the kids, teachers, janitor and Principal from River's school put their hands together to make a rainbow.  It brightened up her room so much!

Giving her back a rest!

One of my favorite pictures!  A trip down to Ronald McDonald family room in the hospital to play "Old Maid" with Mommy and Daddy

This lego piece was particularly challenging.  River:  "If I can do cancer I can do legos!"

Jesus the Christ knows us and knows how to help us through this:
Alma 7: 11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
 12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.


  1. Thank you for continuing to share Rivers journey. She is inspiring to us all.

  2. Thank you for sharing River's Journey with us. The girls love and miss her…please let her know that they think of her often and pray she is doing well.