People keep asking me and Mark how we feel and the honest answer is that we just don’t know yet. This is all so uncertain, things seem to change so drastically so quickly and until we have something more definitive than we have right now, we just aren’t committing to any particular reaction or emotion.
We feel sad, for Austin, for Braedan (who, if he hasn’t felt abandoned up until this point, probably will now — ha, cancer humor), for us. We feel scared, angry, worried, hopeful, resigned, frustrated, tired, bewildered, numb. We feel everything all at once and we feel nothing at all.
We will wait until December 10 and in these two weeks, we will carry on as normal, going to school and on outings, painting together at the new house in what has become a family labor of love, Austin with an endless array of colors in his hair. We will cook and bake and eat on Thanksgiving and be thankful for all that we have. And we will wait until that next ultrasound to see if this new little thing has indeed grown.
And if it has grown, then we will assume it is cancer, because, really, what other small round hard object is going to appear out of nowhere in this boy’s kidney but cancer? The dilemma of the past month will be irrelevant and we will do whatever we have to to get it out of his body and make sure it never comes back.
And if it hasn’t grown, the great hope of the moment, we will go back home (to which house, we’re still not sure!) and buy our Christmas tree and decorate it, and celebrate yet another holiday all together, happy and apparently healthy, and be thankful for all we have.
And then we’ll do another ultrasound two weeks after that and then a scan in mid-January and we’ll go as long and as far as we can until we have a reason to change course. And if and when the time comes that we have to take that kidney out, then that’s what we’ll do and we’ll move forward with dialysis and learn a new set of terms and adopt a new diet and meet the new nurses and we’ll be thankful for all that we have.