It's celebration night tonight for my Mum and Dad. They are celebrating with homemade soup, thanks to our very kind friends, with some bread and no more chemo for a few weeks!
My first round of chemotherapy is finished!
And I am done!! My 1st round of 6 is completed. A couple more days in hospital and if I continue to behave, home early next week!
I will finish my first round of chemotherapy today. I don't like the chemo... I'm tied to tubes for four days and can't go anywhere... If I have to lie here, so does Mum!
Digging deep for Dexter
27 Jun, 2012 12:00 AM
BY anyone’s reckoning, 13-month-old Kiama Downs tot Dexter Heffernan has had a rough start to life. Now he faces his greatest challenge yet, having been diagnosed with cancer. Dexter and his parents Andrew and Lenice are currently by their son’s bedside at Randwick Children’s Hospital and staying at Ronald McDonald House as he
undergoes tests ahead of starting chemotherapy for liver cancer.
The latest blow for the Heffernans comes on top of a series of setbacks starting when it was discovered Dexter had a single umbilical artery.
As a result of Dexter’s premature arrival (nine weeks before term), he had received only half a dose of the required glucocorticosteroids and his lungs were not prepared. As a result, during his first year he fought pneumonia, anaemia and jaundice and endured ultrasounds, echo-cardiograms, x-rays, barium swallows, enemas, electroencephalograms, milk scans, blood work and endless
tests. When Dexter was four weeks old, his parents were told their son had periventricuar leukomalacia (a form of brain damage also known as PVL).
‘‘Our worlds went into free fall as the news washed away our hopes and dreams,’’ Mr Heffernan said. ‘‘As a result, Dexter now has an official cerebral palsy diagnosis. ‘‘For three months, Dexter lived in the RPA Hospital. For three months, Lenice sat beside him, each and every day. With TAFE commitments, it was difficult to take time off work. ‘‘I couldn’t stay with my son and my wife. Dexter’s fourth month was spent at Wollongong Hospital. Lenice stayed by his side all day. Each night, I finished work and went to the hospital to sit with Dexter.’’
Mr Heffernan said when they could finally bring Dexter home, he had to have his breathing monitored. A week after he came home, he was back in hospital for a hernia operation.
‘‘Finally, we could settle down and love our son,’’ he said. ‘‘Sure, he was different to most kids, but his strength was inspiring.’’
Because of his PVL, Dexter attended regular physiotherapy and occupational therapy. ‘‘We would do exercises with him. He would keep on going even when he was so tired he could barely move. He was a fighter from the very beginning.’’ Just as things were looking up, Dexter’s progress was again impeded with news he had a visual impairment. ‘‘His eyes worked fine, but the pathways connecting them to the brain did not,’’ Mr Heffernan said. ‘‘Some moments he might see perfectly. Some moments he might not see at all.’’
Now as Dexter and his parents tackle the cancer diagnosis, Mr Heffernan said he wanted to be by his son and wife’s sides and Mr Heffernan’s friend Michelle Scotford (Bennett) is determined to make sure that happens by organising an appeal. With the support of Dexter’s aunties, Carol and Terese, ‘‘Dollars for Dexter’’ will culminate in an event at Kiama Golf Club in August.
‘‘Most of the medical expenses are paid for, but I am hoping that we can buy his dad some time off work so they can afford to pay their bills and not worry,’’ Mrs Scotford said. Ms Scotford is also appealing for donations and/or raffle or auction items.
Thanks Kiama Independent.
I have 25 hours to go... I have been playing more today and I'm eating still, but I am feeling a little sick now..
But, the drugs help and the nurses are nice to me
In this photo, mum is playing. She is starting to get bored and she is using me to keep herself busy!
I know how much she loves me, though, so I'm happy to play with her, too!
T Rex ( Tony Williams ) from Manly and two dragons players, Beau Scott and Ben Creagh dropped in to the hospital to visit me today!
I feel so lucky!
Coming up to the half way mark of my first round of chemotherapy and I'm feeling better today. I'm more awake and playful, but I'mstill tired. I enjoyed music therapy today and even got to meet some blues players!
Almost 24 hours down, just another 72 hours to go for this round.
I'm tired and a little grumpy, but otherwise doing well.
The anti-nausea and anti-spew drugs help. And I kept breathing all night, without the need of oxygen!
My chemotherapy started today.
It will take 96 hours for me to receive my first treatment.
The doctors told my Mum and Dad there will probably be six rounds of treatment. They think I will have my surgery after four treatments and then have another two rounds of chemotherapy.
We might need lots of love and support to get us through the next six months.
I knew it would happen, eventually! Mum got tired of watching me sprawled out on my big bed, while she and Dad were cramped into the small lounge. Today, she kicked me out of my bed! So, I lay on her and got to sleep on her!!
We are back on a ward now, so Mum and Dad will be going back to sleepless nights! It's Dad's turn to stay with me tonight, so Mum fed me jelly for dinner. I loved it, but Dad might not!
Also, my doctors told us the lung biopsy results. The lumps in my lung are lymphnodes not tumours! This is the first bit of good news yet!
The doctors thinks I might be starting my chemotherapy tomorrow, but who knows...
I'm a Kindy Kid!
Would you like some cake?
We Nearly Lost Him
When I Was Tiny
See The Cancer?
I Just Want to be a Mum
Who is Dexter?
Learning to See
And then, they whispered about me
Dexter's Comm. Bank account details are:
BSB # 062562
Acc # 10234461
Extra therapies for Dexter. Thank you xxx
Our Charity Fundraising:
#DEXTERSMATES for Camp Quality
Relay for Life
Total raised for charity:
Dexter's You Tube
Cancer in Photos
Stand Up Paddle
First Month in Photos
Dexter's You Tube
Books & characters with disabilities here
Find a Beach Wheelchair near you
Buy a Yabby beach wheelchair here.
"I am tired, I am having a bad patch and I am unsure if I want to scream, get drunk or most likely just pull myself together and get on with it." Kelly Dugan