This morning I was thrown an early birthday party right in my hospital room by all of my Lake Orion girls, Shannon, Elisia, Jennifer, Jamie and Tara. Elisia played guitar while everyone sang "Happy Birthday." These girls are the BEST. They even baked funfetti cupcakes and brought candles for me to blow out. Tara made custom tanks and tees that say "Team Tara Never Give Up Hope". So of course, I had to try and get out of bed and make a few laps with my girls; we made it five times around the unit, which is three more than I did yesterday and I was pretty proud of that!
The kindness and generosity that I have received from family, friends, co-workers, clients, strangers, and even the Detroit Tigers Organization, has humbled me beyond belief.
With the joy I felt having my own little birthday party, physically I am still struggling. I have never felt so sick in my almost 34 years of living. The fever of 103 later today knocked me out and the movement of sitting up, alone, was a nightmare. Funny how much I love that these stem cells are showing signs of engraftment through gradual increases in my blood counts, but they are taking every ounce of my energy and strength while they begin to find a home inside of my body. I knew that this would be hard, but, being downright, rock bottom sick, I was foolishly not expecting.
Good news though, the stem cells are engrafting. That is what I am trying so hard to focus on.
Maybe my new cells will give me a break on Thursday, so I can spend most of my actual birthday awake and not shaking from high fevers. Hope, just like Tara's shirts she made say, "Never Give Up Hope." My primary nurse, Natalie, brought in streamers and some birthday decorations to my room, since she won't be working on my actual birthday, and she totally decorated my room! See, there is a lot to be happy about, even if it's as simple as blue and orange streamers hanging around my room. It's the small things in life that mean the most in life.