Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Zoe:To Whit To Woo (+91)

We all had to put brave faces on today as Sonny had to visit the Whittington as an out-patient. Every three weeks he needs to have a very fancy infusion to help mend his immune system which takes four hours to drip in and costs a staggering £600 a pop. I took Ruby along as a body guard in case we needed any of her killer kick-boxing moves. Considering we hardly ever leave the house it was pretty daunting trying to ask Islington's finest not to travel in the heaving lifts with us, made worse by one being out of action as there was a large pool of vomit festering in the corner. Nice.

Monday, 30 August 2010

Gavin: Victorian Dad (BMT+90)

Rather than moan about what we can't do with Sonny, we've decided to embrace it and change our normal routines to those more akin to a house from the 1900's. Out go trips to the cinema followed by a slap up meal and in come wiff waff around the kitchen table followed by sausage hot pot. Zoe has taken up knitting and put the finishing touches to another cushion cover, while Rubes made pom poms with the off cuts serenaded by Sonny on the trumpet. I'm doing my bit by pooing out of the first floor window and campaining for you bloody women to get the right to vote.

P.S. Do me a favour and click here to visit Sonny's blog and, if you want to be a superstar you can follow him. He's doing it religiously everyday but really wants to see that people are interested. Cheers.

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Gavin: I've made a mistake (BMT+88)

We feel pretty bad you know. I mean it was all getting a bit much and we were feeling a little trapped... I mean you asked a lot of us and it was fine when we were in the hospital and everything but we wanted to see other people too. The trouble is, only talking to you once a week isn't working either. We feel a bit empty and truth be told we kind of miss you a bit. Well, a lot to be honest. And we know we wanted the break and everything and it's our fault and it was nothing to do with you but can we, maybe, you know... come back? Perhaps not every day like before but not as rigid as saying it will be once a week either. Maybe two or three times a week to start off with and we'll go from there? We've still got our own key so can just come and go as we please (if that's alright with you) and we promise we won't leave again. What d'you think? Shall we all give it another go and see if we can make this work? Please.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Zoe: Bring it on (+87)

Sonny had his pinny on again.

Sonny being put through his paces in the gym.

Emperor Palpatine's Shuttle (thank you Grandma) built at Nanny's

Lego leftovers... yummy.

I think we are going to have to go back to blogging everyday as my brain is hurting thinking of what we've all been up to. Gav has had a few weeks off work which has been brilliant and I think we are now all used to living in the same space again. Sonny gave us a scare on Thursday, waking up with a headache and not fancying his breakfast. A quick phone call to GOSH didn't make it better as they thought it could be the start of an infection. This is very common and would mean going to the Whittington for some antibiotics. Sonny was terrified this would happen so it was a huge relief when he started to feel better and the hastily arranged blood tests confirmed everything to be normal. Despite the rain, its been a good week - here are the highlights:

Chavington World of Adventure
Gav made the most of the dreadful weather and took Ruby to Chessington for the day in the pouring rain. They got properly soaked and loved every minute although Gav did say he's never been more scared in his life.

Sonny's enforced imprisonment has meant that he's reignited his passion for Starwars and Starwars lego in particular. We've been watching the movies in chronological order (Empire Strikes Back tomorrow) and building lots of cruisers and shuttles. Its costing a small fortune so I'm now stubbornly attempting to catalogue every piece of lego from abandoned sets and hoping to reunite it with its original instruction manual. Hmmmmmmm.

Sonny's treatment has been incredibly grueling on his body. He's managed to recover full mobility in his feet from the awful toxic chemo back in November but this has meant, along with heaps of enforced bedrest that his stamina is really low and he's not nearly as strong or as steady as he wants to be. Our home physio visited this week and he was also able to visit her in the gym where she put him through his paces. He has lots of physio to do now 3 times a day which is great as it will help him feel better. To give you an idea of where he is here are his goals for the end of September:
Do 10 reps with 1kg weight for all leg exercises
Do 10 deep squats at wall with ball at back
Do 10 deep lunges in a row
Get up from the floor on either leg 10 times in a row
Run 5 metres
Jump over a 2 inch hurdle

Scotch Eggs
Some friends came over on Tuesday. After a very pleasant early evening cricket match on Highbury Fields in the field where is says NO CRICKET with some super shots from Sonny and 4 catches from Ruby we went home for a lovely supper. Sonny made Heston's Scotch Eggs, you know from that advert off the telly. Try them, they were amazing. We are now having deep fat fryer conversations...

Trip to Nanny & DAs
We left London... and drove to Gav's parents in Essex for lunch. The kids were really excited. Nanny & Da were really excited and we all had a lovely time.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Owzat? (BMT+82)

A great day out yesterday as we went to Little Hallingbury to watch our mate Stewart play cricket. An accident on the A12 saw us stuck in a proper 'engine off' traffic jam for an hour which meant I spent the whole time planning an escape route if he got a temperature (ambulance from junction 8 on the other side of the road and lift him over the barrier in case you were wondering) but we eventually made it in time to see Stew rack up a magnificent half century in front of his home crowd. He's great with Sonny and spent time in the nets showing him batting techniques, before we headed home uneventfully. Today I bought him a cricket set (£12.99 from sports direct in case you were wondering) and we went to the park, bumped into a little boy from school and played our own, albeit more sedate version.
The last picture is what happens when you leave a ten year old with your phone as you pop into Tesco's (you know, in case you were wondering).

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Gavin: The weekly roundup (BMT+79)

Blimey this is tough... One 10 year old boy and 4 months of trying to keep him busy isn't quite as easy as you think. Anything you think of that we can do he can't. Or, we've been doing it for a year in hospital and he's totally fed up with it. Today we went to watch a fly by of WWII spitfires in St James Park. We managed to find a quiet bit of the park until we realised we were in the firing line of everyone leaving and had to do a runner, quick. Still, we've had a really good week and have a few things up our sleeve to keep him happy. Not sure social services will agree with us opening a Blue Square account for him to bet £1 per day, but if it burns 20 minutes, it's good for us. We're off to watch Gooldy play cricket tomorrow (as they rarely get spectators) and I may even have to bat. The only time Sonny has seen me at the crease is doing the ironing. Anyway, as promised, here's the roundup of what's happened this week...

There's a new blog in town
One of our genius ideas was to set him up a blog where he'll be commenting on what's going on in the world of sport. He's really excited about it and hopefully will get into doing it every day. I've read his first post and it's as good as ours, so should give you all a more regular fix (albeit without the hospital side of things). Please click here and follow him or paste the link below... it would make his day if you joined up.


Clinic day Wednesday (also known as The Star Wars Cantina)
Sonny got a right royal reception at his weekly clinic. Every doctor and consultant stopped to talk and remark on how amazing they think he's doing. It was a little embarrassing at one point when we had all the BMT team surrounding him while the rest of the kids sat there being ignored. When we did sit down with our Consultant it was just great. They still can't quite believe it's going so well and have warned us that it may change now he's off the immune suppressants but hey, we'll be ready for it if it comes. They also don't want to see him for a fortnight which has scared the life out of us but is terrific news. If he carries on like this he'll be the next poster boy for the 'jesus-christ-it-really-worked' team that I believe work in Marketing.

Fantasy League
A strong start from Andrew, one of Sonny's school chums who's sitting pretty at the top with a massive 75 points. There's nearly two million players in the whole game and he's currently around 46,000th which is amazing. It pains me to say that the one to watch will be Gooldenballs, the only player in the top five without Drogba. I'd like to point out there's no shame in being 27th either.

Going out
Me and Zo went out and sat in a pub garden for a bit. Obviously, all we did was talk about Sonny but it was still lovely. My mum and dad babysat and had a lovely time too so smiles all round really. Hangover wasn't much fun though, we'd forgotten that bit.

Some photos
Well, only two for some reason. We're obviously too busy on some poker site.

This is egg day when his final food group was allowed. Yum.

This is us out on the South side of the river as no one ever goes there. I'm looking out for airborne bacteria.

So there we are. Hope thats enough to keep you all going. See you next week my lovelies.

Monday, 16 August 2010

Gavin: The bi-weekly maybe weekly roundup begins (+75)

Right, listen up you lot. Sonny is doing really well. Really, really well. All his bloods are heading in the right way and, although his liver readings are still off the scale, they're coming down nicely in what the doctors call a 'trend'. Alongside all this, he's having a great time, eating well and getting better on his feet every day. So, we've decided to reduce the blog to a bi-weekly or maybe weekly roundup where we'll fill you in then.
I know, I know... it's going to be tough for us all to get used to but our reasons are simple: The more Sonny is at home the less things there are to blog about. It's a brilliant situation and one we all hope you understand. Of course, if there's an online petition that takes on the sort of weight the 'Free Diedre Rashid' campaign did, then we may reconsider.
Keep emailing, commenting and calling. We're not going anywhere, there just isn't that much to say. That's probably the best sentence I've ever typed in my life.
See you Friday people. Be careful out there.

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Zoe: No worries (+74)

I came downstairs today at 8am to find Sonny sitting on the sofa tucking into a bowl of cereal. Funny how little things can give you so much pleasure. Todays photo shows Sonny getting really nervous before today's game against Liverpool...

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Gavin: And we're off (+73)

The highlight of the year happened today when the Premiership kicked off another season. Man City couldn't find the backbone to beat The Scum but it was a great game. A quick flick over to the experienced tones of Jeff Stelling and our afternoon was complete... along with a visit from his mate Jude who had him running around shooting us all with guns.
We've renewed our tickets for The Mighty Arsenal™ this year but can't go for at least 4 months as Sonny isn't allowed in crowds, so if you fancy watching a game let us know. £40 a ticket (£80 for the pair) could see you be part of our quadruple winning season. I'm not joking either, this tramp outside the tube shouted that 'I was a prize winning Arse'. If that isn't a sign people, I don't know what is.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Zoe: Driving Miss Daisy (+72)

What to do, what to do..? Don't get me wrong its great being home but thinking of ways to amuse a ten year old boy without coming into contact with Joe Public is already proving to be a bit tricky. Today a trip to Argos turned into a drive. Yes a drive. Luckily, there's always something to gawp at in our little village. Today's highlights were an extremely tall teenager in Regents Street, 6 Bentleys and the smell of Chinese cooking as we sat in traffic on Shaftesbury Avenue.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Zoe and Gav: A treat (BMT+71)

We're on our fourth can of Grolsch, have just had a takeaway and now Big Brother is on. Any chance you lot could leave us alone tonight?

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Gavin: He's coming home... (BMT+70)

Sonny has been in hospital now since the 17th April, almost four months to the day. So, when they decided that he could home today for good, we nearly cried. As ever, Zoe took hold of the situation and jostled along pharmacy to get the huge bag of drugs needed and all the paperwork signed and ready for us to be ready to look after him at home. It's a monumental day. If all goes to plan then Sonny won't be back in GOSH and hopefully will only have to endure trips to the Witt for top up drugs we can't give at home and some overnight stays with them if he develops a fever in the next 4 months (probably inevitable, but the bag is packed and ready).
Sonny is over the moon, Ruby hasn't stopped chatting with him and me and Zo are now getting used to a sofa we haven't snuggled on for 116 days. Yeah, I said snuggled, get over it. I'm happy alright.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Zoe: Heroes Wanted (+69)

Below is a link for the Anthony Nolan Trust. Just click on it and you can register to be on the bone marrow register. We'll never know who Sonny's donor was but something prompted him once to want to save a life and thank god it did.

Monday, 9 August 2010

Gavin:D'ya want another tea Stevie? (+68)

The noobs are starting to get on my tits now. One of them has decided to prop their door open with a bin which, as all the others hadn't thought of it, followed suit. This means that whatever little Kylie decides to cough up (or indeed her emphysemic granddad who lollops around the ward like a wet fart) will be shared by all the other little Jason's. Of course, it's early days for them and, after a particularly nasty bout of paraflu or something they'll all be saying 'I just dunno how it happened, we're like really good at being clean and stuff' as they lift their masks and mash leftover chicken nuggets into their revolting gobs. Hopefully, if Sonny keeps on being as brilliant and well as he has been for a few weeks now, we can stop paddling around the shallow end of the gene pool and get back to some proper people. The good news is that unless this blog gets featured in the Real Lives! section of Take A Break, they'll never know what I think of them.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Gavin: Form is temporary, class is permanent (+67)

Despite the blood results from Sonny's liver continuing to rise, no one seems concerned apart from me and Zo, so he was up again bright and early and we snuck out around 11. Today, rather than him keep making tons of food, we decided to eat some of it up so went for a picnic on Hampstead Heath (dahlings). It was such a great day that it was really hard for for us all to say goodbye to him again at 6... we still have no idea when we'll be able to tuck him up in his own bed and enjoy a bottle of wine. Still, the pictures tell the story of the day (check out the reverse cross in pic 4... either foot boys, either foot) except for the last one, which is him watching the Charity Shield last year streamed on a laptop in the Italian Hospital. We watched this years' today in the comfort of our own home and it was good fun watching the tired old lags from both teams barely make it to 90 minutes. Arsenal's 11 year olds will run rings around them this season.

Saturday, 7 August 2010

Gavin: Fat duckies (+66)

It's noob week this week on Elephant with 5 admissions in as many days. Which means eating me tea is now punctuated by large, tired looking women in towelling sweat pants asking me how long have you er, been here? I'm sure they'll soon learn that I'm not remotely interested in little Alisha and her troubles and will let me enjoy my Waitrose reduced fat Saag Aloo in peace. Although I nearly couldn't manage such culinary delights after todays efforts with Heston Bloomin'heck. Alongside Ruby, he rustled up the dough and they made some delicious sausage and salami pizzas. Then, while Ruby worked on the sign for the new restaurant, he ploughed on, turning out a tomato and onion salad (with fresh mozzarella) and making his own pesto from scratch. We're obviously delighted that he's not just learning how to cook but how to be terribly middle class at the same time.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Zoe: So what now? (+65)

We had Ward Round today which means we get a little face to face time with the consultant. Our BMT consultant has just changed as they do two months on the ward at a time. Bit gutted as the last one was the nuts but the new one is dead good too and luckily we already know him from when we were first admitted under Haematology/Oncology - oh those were the days... Anyway, we discussed the excellent PET result and what it means for Sonny apart from being very nice. No one is really sure so Sonny will be discussed at a large meeting of people that might know at UCH next week and in the meantime they are going to slow down the rate at which they take him off the immune suppressing drugs. This is to prevent him getting GVHD. Do you remember we wanted it before to fight the Hodkins? Well now we don't need it so much as there isn't any to fight.

In other news, an ultra sound scan this morning showed that his liver was enlarged but they think this is down to the colossal amount of drugs he's been on. If it gets any worse they'll jiggle with his medicines over the weekend. Home still seems a long way off. Sonny would really like to be allowed home for good now but we know we've got a long way to go still so as hard as it is to admit, we're quite happy with this little arrangement for the time being. It's like checking into a B&B where the staff wear fancy blue uniforms every night, complete with jams with peel off lids and individual packs of butter.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Zoe: Feel the love (+64)

We wouldn't be where we are now without the support and love of all our friends and family. Thank you so much for all your kind messages. We are rubbish at replying to the them all but we really want you to know that your words are an enormous comfort and crutch. Your kindness is never ending and today's pictures show Sonny opening the biggest box of his life this morning and cooking gnocchi from a wondeful cookbook a chum gave him a few months ago. Thanks guys, don't ever underestimate what your love means to us.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Zoe: Wishes do come true (+63)

This wise and beautiful lady is Sonny's great grandmother and she was 90 today. Everyone went to quite a bit of effort today on the present front but I reckon the Anderson section of the family won hands down with our birthday news... sorry am I gloating? Ha, ha - I don't care, tra la la.

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Gavin: PET scan results (+62)

Sonny is cancer free. He is in complete remission. The PET scan is showing no metabolic activity. He is cancer free. He is in complete remission....

It still hasn't really sunk in yet. The doctor saw Zoe this afternoon and she told Sonny and I. We were all in tears. I went and found the Doc later to hear it from the horses mouth and there was lots of handshaking and words like 'delighted' being thrown around. It's all the more poetic to receive this news today as it's exactly a year to the day that Sonny was diagnosed with this pile of shit.

There's still a long way to go and of course, the trade off to get this far is the BMT which will now be our focus for the next six months but, if that path is now made of gold instead of treacle, we're happy.

It's been a hell of a year for us all but remember there's only one person that's had 14 general anaesthetics, 20 gallons of chemo, at least 5,000 pills, the best part of a year in hospital and a completely new blood system. And that my friends is the most remarkable little boy I know. If you have a drink today, raise a glass to him. He deserves it.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Zoe: Pet hate hate hate (+61)

Sonny had his transplant exactly two months ago. To celebrate we went for a PET scan at UCH. As you know from previous entries Sonny hates the whole experience and was incredibly anxious. Today's was just as awful and made all the more nasty by the radiographer squirting the nuclear medicine all over Sonny instead of into his line... apparently its fine and Chernobyl was just blown out of all proportion by the media. All they needed to do was just wipe it off with a paper towel. Just the nail biting wait for the results to look forward to - JESUS.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Gavin Mother knows best (+60)

About a week ago, Sonny wrote an email to the ad agency Mother about their Mr Sleep and the Zzz Squad adverts for Travelodge. Basically, he figured that if you got a Mr Sleep teddy and put it on every pillow in the rooms, more kids would pester their parents to stay with Travelodge rather than say, Premier Inn. I thought it was worth sending and today, we received a response in the post. Not only did they hand write (yes, Hand Write) a two page letter from Mr Sleep himself promising to provide Teddies for every pillow in Great Ormond street, they also mocked up a Contract of Employment for Sonny to be retained as a Sleep Consultant and printed out 20 or so postcards signed by the each of the characters. Considering most people think creatives swan around East London in Nike Terminators drinking Brahma and saying how the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs are so over, this should restore anyone's faith in human kindness. I just hope the team were as excited putting it together as we were to get it.

Below is the original TV ad, the letter From Mr Sleep, the postcards and a response from Sonny that we posted back today. I love you Mother, seriously, I think you're brilliant.

ps: As with all the pictures, you can click on them to see them a bit bigger...