Switching back

We switched quickly this morning. I took Anaya with me as a surprise for Daya. Little Jasmine went to Granny Wendy’s for cuddles; so that we could escape undetected and she wouldn’t get upset when we left.

Daya was snuggling up like a little Koala when Anaya arrived.

In a moment of comedy Daya raised the bed that Anaya was sitting on.

It is lonely and boring for Daya. Me too. Looking forward to some visitors this week.

Ive got a new ride. We take Daya for a spin in this.

Daya managed to cover my Moleskine diary, full of the children’s appointments, with Peppa Pig stickers.

Fun-time-Frankie

To my kids, I’m like a trip to the local park.

Daddy is like a trip to the funfair.

One weekend, on my way in, some of our team at Gosh hilariously told me that Daya is ‘a different person with her Daddy. She’s naughty and tells us all off. She’s always having fun and messing about when he’s here’.

Me: yep that sounds about right.

Pretend play with Daddy. Yes the big grizzly guy was George pig and Daya was Mummy Pig, ‘come on you monkeys get in the car, we have to go out’. I say that!!

Out in Regents Park. Probably Daddy going for a run…

Making Coffee in the kitchen. ‘Make your coffee Daddy. Do it. Do it now. Make coffee’.

Late night trips to the playroom…

Quick Daddy. Lets go for a ‘little-walkie’.

Lots and lots of mischief.

Emotional intelligence

Anaya: This Christmas will Daya be here at home?

Me: Yes. …no. We don’t know….why?

Anaya: because she wasn’t last year…

Me: she was for a bit…

Why did I say no?

Anything is possible. My friend told me of how she told her child that he just needed to do this bit of chemo and then he would go to his sports day. He never made it to sports day. The things you and I take for granted …cut deep in another’s world.

We have had to manage Anaya’s feelings and emotions carefully. She was three when all this started. She’s six now. I saw a children’s counsellor very soon after Daya was diagnosed to discuss how to help explain cancer to Anaya. It was brief and effective. Ive needed to learn to do a lot more since then. For example, explaining the situation in an age appropriate manner, communicating, explaining time away and explaining cancer. Anu and I were pretty quick to ensure that Anaya was carefully looked after throughout all of this; especially due to the fact that there would be a lot we could not protect her from.

On the same night Daya was diagnosed, Anu said, ‘we can’t control this cancer, we can only control the experiences they have’.

Love to see you shine in the night, like the diamond you are…nothing feels better than this…

Better, Khalid

This weekend I was home trying to function on little sleep. Fun-time-Frankie (Daddy) was having fun with Daya at the hospital.

Over the last two years Anaya and I have talked about a lot of things. Cancer and emotions. Emotions and treatment. Treatment and Separation. Life and Death. Love. Most importantly Love. I’ve bought kiddie books on feelings. They aren’t all great but hopefully something comes of them. Whichever way you look at it, she hasn’t had a choice. So I’ve taken the opportunity to try and build some emotional intelligence. Emotional resilience is not something I want her to have at this age. Inevitably it will come too. She is still too young to regulate her emotions. There are some grown ups who still cannot do that! Until then, I’ve got your back kid.

This weekend I’ve been home and they have needed Mummy time. Anaya took these pictures whilst I was sitting on a paint can!

Watch out world. There’s a mini-me in training. She’s better, smarter, kinder, funnier and sharper.

And I do laugh…I’ve started to laugh more because my children are too funny and I’m getting to spend more time with them.

And then, after a long day, we had the ‘she’s my mummy’ fight…

Know this Anaya and team, it wasn’t fair on you. That kills me. But we had your back. Not just me and Daddy. All of us. From nani and Jenny to Vicky and Eve. From Sarah and Lulu to Nuray and Esther. Indi to Wendy, Agnes to Nina and everyone in between. It’s taken a village…

I’ve got you kid. I’ve got you through everything. If you kill someone, I’ll help you bury that body!

Joking! Don’t ever hurt anyone, ever. Daddy won’t like it.

As much as I tell you off, I’ll always be that person who stands in front of you to protect you from anything.

I’ve got you; because I want you to enjoy your childhood and everything after.

Last radiation dose

Whooohooo!

She’s done it!

Completed radiation.

We have had the best visits this week. Aunty Pinar turned up (with a wooden toaster!). Thankfully she got to stay with us for a good few hours and was with us when we put Daya down for radiation and the above was taken when Daya came back from her scan.

Now it’s been a tough few days…and the lady below, let’s call her ‘Nurse N’, came to show us love at just the right time. We are all intricately woven into the same fabric. I joined a Twins group in our local area. I never got to the playgroups nor did I get to meet other families with twins through this group. My life has clearly gone off on a tangent. This lady is part of that group and she is also a nurse in our hospital. She reads the blog and recognised where we were. She showed up with Peppa pig gifts, an awesome card and a lot of love. Come back because I need to hug you and chat properly!

The world is a small place. There is love and we are all connected in some way.

She really lifted the mood at a chaotic time.

I think I love her…

Two thirds

Chemotherapy destroys your body. The good cells and the bad cells. It destroys everything; as we saw during High Dose. Her skin peeled off, her nails fell off, her gut lining came out, her teeth are damaged and her insides are damaged too.

I’ve never seen someone put through so much and to be so relentlessly battered. I don’t think I’ll ever forget much of what I’ve seen although I’m trying to. However, she is the one that actually had to endure it all.

She’s known nothing else. She has spent over two thirds of her life fighting this disease. This cancer is awful.

She’s had no choice. Nor have we.

“The encouraging thing is that every time you meet a situation, though you may think at the impossibility and you go through the tortures of the damned, once you have met it and lived through it you find that forever after you are freer than you ever were before. If you can live through that you can live through anything.

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, `I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ The danger lies in refusing to face the fear, in not daring to come to grips with it.

If you fail anywhere along the line, it will take away your confidence. You must make yourself succeed every time. You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt, You Learn By Living (1960)

Make more fear filled choices. Live a life uncommon.