Our very precious Baby Deqlan Ross Higgins was discharged yesterday(Thursday, 5th July) and left the Little Company of Mary Oncology Unit dressed to greet the cold wind outside, but with a huge grin of victory and an unforgettable smile of courage. With the second round of chemotherapy behind him, Mommy, Daddy, Megs and Nanna were in awe of our "beautiful soldier and warrior" winning another episode in this "war". Deqlan seemed to "tolerate" the chemo without any noticeable nausea or vomiting spells, and the only side-effects were manageable, being fatigue and numerous soiled nappies of a specific kind.
The paediatric oncologist came to examine Deqlan just before his discharge and it is something quite extraordinary to observe how "relaxed" Deqlan is with him. Dr de Jager has indeed a very special relationship with our Deqlan and is able to palpate and use his stethoscope without so much as a murmur from Deqlan (unlike other doctors or nurses). The two "eyeball" each other and communicate with their eyes which speak a language which they only understand. Deqlan goes so far as to reach out to be held by him and responds to his various endearments. This is the surest sign of trust and faith from Deqlan towards this special man who is acting as one of God's human instruments in effecting Deqlan's complete and permanent healing.
Deqlan has certainly been "more himself" after this latest surgery, undertaken by a different surgeon. His inimitable laugh, specific responses to his favourite toys and to relevant people were a sure sign to us all that he is finally free of the "intestinal obstructions" which tormented him in the past. His beautiful smile, with his nose "crinkling up" in the cutest fashion ever, is our reward when we are with him. Nanna regards every second spent with him as priceless moments in time. Both Mommy and Daddy's home and Nanna's home are prepared for "infection control", especially after his chemo round which has understandably left him very immunocompromised. We just cannot be too careful and have had to lay down "strict do's and don'ts" to protect Deqlan, as even slight or mild infections can have very serious consequences for him; in fact, they can prove fatal.
Today was a great day, with Deqlan tasting some of great grandpa's home-made vegetable soup, which he loved and he finished his first serving of rooibos tea with relish!!! Deqlan is still having "bad dreams", probably a result of all the trauma to which he has been subjected as a result of the repeated surgeries and the relevant procedures that went with them. Mommy, Daddy, Nanna and/or Megs ensure we are always close at hand to reassure him during these episodes which we know will subside with time, with continued prayer and with all the love he receives from his family. He just adores his doggies, Shelby and Stuffy, the kitty, Blue as well as Nanna's doggies Otto and Benji and he grins every time he sees one of his beloved pets.
Deqlan's collection of froggies (we love them as they are our symbol of "Forever and Fully Reliant on God" (F.R.O.G.) is growing substantially, as is his collection of soft toys, each of which have a very special place in his heart.
The coming weekend will no doubt be enjoyed in the confines of his home (due to his immunosuppression) but Mommy and Daddy, Nanna, Grandpa, Megs and Conrad, all being well and healthy, will ensure "entertainment" of the highest calibre. One of Deqlan's favourite pastimes at home is watching the washing machine go round and round, so he doesn't need a fully fledged cabaret show to keep him happy. It is important that anyone (who have even a slight cold or who have been in contact with sick children or adults) visiting Deqlan's home, is required to wear a mask and perform stringent hand-washing before contact with Deqlan is regarded as safe.
Nanna has been tasked with giving Deqlan a series of six subcutaneous injections (Neupogen) which will ensure regeneration of his bone marrow (after the suppression by the chemotherapeutic agents). These injections will follow each and every chemotherapy session. Nanna has had to come up with some creative ideas to preserve the sacred trust relationship she shares with her adored Deqlan.
Daddy is enjoying his new job and looks like a sauve male model every morning he leaves for work. His smile is wider these days, the "sun is shining" again. As for Mommy, catching up on lost sleep is a priority, but this can only be undertaken when baby sleeps as well. Mommy has performed "miracles" by coping with beautiful Deqlan during the day and catching up on running the travel agency at night. She has been doing this for a month, and believe it or not, has not lost a single watt of her "glow", and her faith in God's love, mercy and plan, is unshakable, unquestionable and eternal. It is beautiful to observe this Mother and Son's unique relationship and Deqlan's excitement in response to his Daddy's arrival every time, is testimony to the special relationship Daddy and Deqlan share.
We thank our precious Lord and Saviour for the love, peace, strength, courage and mercy He has bestowed upon all of us. We humbly offer our praise in loving thanks for the "miracles" He has already given us, in His own way, in His own time and on His own terms. You Lord are the Greatest Physician of All and we KNOW you have a plan for Deqlan. We all are energized by and have the greatest faith in God's word which states:
"I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future"
Sacred Heart of Jesus, we place our trust in Thee, All for Thee o Lord, o my Jesus, all for Thee.
Please continue to pray for Deqlan, Mommy Daddy, the whole family and all Deqlan's "other friends" he has met during his journey. It is so vitally important to THANK our Lord for what he has done for Deqlan to date and we trust so completely that He will continue to carry Deqlan very close to His sacred heart and enfold our precious baby in His love and mercy.
Posted by Nanna (aka Bev Bourne).