There is No Such Thing as a Bad Day

At the hospital there doesn’t seem to be a big difference between the day and night.  Ashtyn is constantly being woken up every few hours, there are meds to be given at all hours of the day and night, and she has to go to the restroom every 3 hours no matter what time it is.  This morning at 8 am, she woke up and couldn’t talk.  Her throat and mouth were so raw and sore that  it was too painful to speak.  Even when she tried to speak a few words, her voice was weak and high pitched.  With such faith and humility she asked, “Did you tell everyone (her Army) to pray for me? My mouth and throat are really sore. I can’t take pills or eat or drink.  Please pray that my throat will be better and my mouth will be better.”

Much of the day she slept, but it wasn’t a restful sleep.  It was an off and on sleep to escape the pain.  In between sleep she would rarely talk but instead would write a few things on a dry erase board if needed.  Her temperature rose throughout the day and reached 102.6.  Her heart rate reached 130 beats per minute.  She had several nosebleeds and eventually got another transfusion of platelets.  Because of her temperature, they took blood from her Broviac central line to test for infection and started her on two additional types of antibiotics, Vancomycin and Cefepime.  With all of this, she stayed calm and persevered.   By 4 pm the medical team started giving her morphine continuously on a pump.  They also gave her a patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) pump of morphine.   This allows her to not only be given a small amount of morphine constantly but also she can push a button as often as every 10 minutes to get extra morphine when she feels she needs it.  While Ashtyn sleeps she needs an oxygen mask near her face.  With morphine she doesn’t breathe as deep as she otherwise would.  At 6 pm she woke up and asked if she could watch TV.  After so many hours her pain had finally decreased enough to watch TV.  Ashtyn stayed awake for about an hour slowly eating a slushie and then fell back asleep.  She woke up again around 10:30 pm and said, “Mom, I’ve been sleeping most of today.”  Ashtyn checked Facebook and her texts.  She ate some more slushie.  Her pain was tolerable, her temperature was down to 100.4 degrees, and her heart rate dropped to 104.  She fell back asleep by midnight.

From the beginning we always knew there would be good days, followed by bad days, with good days that would come again.  Isn’t that how life is?  Some days, weeks, and months are good and others aren’t so good.  But good and bad days depend on how you look at them.  Today could be looked at as a bad day for Ashtyn, and it was.  But it was a good day for her too.  She was blessed with more loving comments and support, a visit that lifted her spiritually, and another visit that took her mind off her pain.  Her doctors and nurses did some remarkable things to help ease her pain, decrease her temperature, and help her not bleed uncontrollably.  Sure it was difficult but she coped well.  At the end of the day she is feeling better than when she woke up.  Her pain is not as severe as it was and she has the medications needed to keep her pain under control.  Her temperature is being treated and her blood is being tested to see if she has an infection.  Her strength from within is showing.  She is coping well with being in the hospital away from everything she loves.  She is handling the pain and she is emotionally and spiritually stable.  For today, what more could I ask for?

“There is no such thing as a bad day; just bad moments that we choose to take with us all day long.”
— Anonymous

Join the discussion 12 Comments

  • Teveka Melanson says:

    Ashtyn, you are a beautiful amazing girl that is bringing a community of strength together. I am a so proud of you and your strength. You are in my prayers everyday. I know that you will overcome this and become happier and healthier than ever before. When you have a bad day just know there is an army of people that love you and are here for you. Whatever you need. Big Hug! love, Teveka

    • Suzanne says:

      Thank you Teveka,
      Ashtyn is feeling the army of people supporting her and raising her up.
      I asked the doctors about the asea product but they haven’t gotten back to me about it.
      Thank you for all your love and support.

  • Karen says:

    Not a second goes by I am not thinking and praying for sweet Ashtyn. I feel so much love for her and also feel the love God has for her and your family. What an incredible perspective on life and cancer. Sending my love, Sushi (or Karen)

  • I’m one of the unknown soldiers in Ashtyn’s Army. I’m in Natalie’s ward, and peeked in to see how Ashtyn was doing on Sunday’s blog. She grabbed my heart, and I’m reading and praying and crying and smiling all at the same time every time you post. Your faith has strengthened my faith. Thank you for being so open with your story—even as you’re asking for prayers, you’re the answer to many.

    • Suzanne says:

      Thank you Marty for reading her blog and being a solidier in her Army. Every single person matters in this fight and makes a difference. Thank you for your support and prayers.

  • I want to wish you a Happy Valintines Day!! Feel better soon!!

  • I also want to say that you guys are making my faith stronger everyday I read this blog!! Love you guys!!

  • Michelle Rigby says:

    I don’t even remember who posted the sweet story of Ashtyn on FB, and I just finished reading all your entries. I’m a complete stranger, but I’d like to be part of Her Army. Ashtyn is incredibly strong and is such a great example of faith. :).
    I am asking your permission to think, pray and fast for Ashtyn…for her continued faith and strength. I’d also love to put her name on the prayer rolls.
    Sleep well, Ashtyn (and mom).

    • Suzanne says:

      Hi Michelle, we aren’t strangers anymore 🙂

      Thank you for joining Ashtyn’s Army. I knew from the moment she was diagnosed with Leukemia that her journey would require support and prayers. I knew that because of others, her struggles would be lightened and her outcome would be a miracle.

      Thank you so much!

  • Richard & Carolyn ODell says:

    Ashtyn, we have joined your army since Grandma told us this AM. Ashtyn and Suzanne, you and your family will be in our prayers. Do not despair as God is with you every step of the way and will bring you through this. We will add your name to the Prayer list in our community. We will follow you through this. We love all of you more than just friends, you are Family! Kisses & hugs
    Carolyn & Richard, Amy, Meg & Cam.

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