"Skymomm" is actually the originator of this web page, way back in 1996 or so. She offered it to me way back when Squirrel Tales was an ugly little mess of a web site (oh yes, we had humble beginnings: primary colors that burnt into your cornea for several minutes after you looked away; it was enough to upset your stomach--but I digress). She sent this update: |
I haven't been back to Squirrel Tales for a long long time. My son is still in treatment and you know how little time there is for fun web browsing. I am so glad that I did today. I started the You Know You're a Parent... one night when I couldn't sleep. I came up with 6 or 7 and then posted them to my friends who are also parents of kids with cancer. They added some more. Squirrel Tales put the list on the site, and more parents added to the list. I am amazed at the number of entries. Thank you Squirrel Tales."
No, thank YOU!
I'm so sorry to have to report this, but after 10 years, Nick, the "Nutty Fruitcake" lost his long valiant struggle. Please visit his website, Nick Snow.
- You carry a tube of Emla in your purse instead a tube of lipstick
- Kids with hair look kind of strange to you
- You can sleep anywhere, and anything that reclines more than 15 degrees
- Your spouse asks what that sexy perfume is, and it's Betadine
- You don't realize the sharps container is on the kitchen table until half
way through dinner
- You enjoy the drive at 3:00am to emergency because there aren't any other
cars on the freeway
- You can name all the equipment used on ER
- You can dx the patients on ER before the Docs do
- You hear a truck backing up and you think the IV is beeping
- You are so proud when your baby finally gets hair (and he is 8)!
- Your new bathroom trash can has "Hazardous Waste" written on it
(recycled sharps container)
- You can maneuver a double pole with six boxes and a kid riding, on a tour
of the hospital, and
make it back to the room before the low-battery alarm sounds and the kid has
- You realize you've been home two weeks, and you're still measuring I's
- The nurses stop responding to the IV alarm, knowing you'll fix it anyway
- Your child asks what's for dinner, and you automatically reach for the
bag of hyperal
- Your 2-year-old knows where all of the medical equipment goes, and how to
- Your child's first word is a medical term
- You keep a bag packed at all times like your 9 1/2 months pregnant
- You can eat with one hand while you hold the barf bucket with the other
- Your child's bedroom looks like a Toys R Us® store
- You ask your CPA if bribe toys are tax deductible
- You correct the doctors spelling on the chemo meds
- You can read the doctors prescription word for word, and are asked to
decipher it by the
- You know medical terminology better than your family practitioner
- There are 4 new Mercedes in the doctors' parking lot due to your child's
- The pharmacy sends your family Christmas presents
- You get excited when there is a 15% off sale at the pharmacy
- The local needle program comes to your door
- You have a syringe in your purse and you're not a diabetic
- You have more meds in your cupboard than food
- You can read your son's chart better than his nurse
- You look like you're tan but it's really Betadine stains
- You and your hubby get matching stress tattoos for fun
- You start teaching your daughter the parts of her body, and you point to
her chest, and she says
that's her port
- None of the security guards on the pediatric floor ask for your ID
anymore, and you're on first-name basis with the operating room staff
- Medical students ask to borrow your notes
- Your toddler refuses to sit on Santa's lap because he's too germy from
all the other kids
- You wrap presents and packages with medical tape
- Your main source of nutrition comes from aspirin
- Your child is more familiar with CT scan & bone scan pictures than the
- When you use the term six-pack, you are talking about platelets, not
- Your child is going on a field trip and wants to know if you have signed
his "remission" slip
- Your child can easily pronounce "Neuroblastoma," "chemotherapy" and
"coagulate," but has trouble pronouncing the state you live in
- Your child uses Legos® to build "MRI" machines
- You don't have to ask, "What's that mean" to the previous 44 items
- You hear yourself say the words, "I'll buy you anything you want" at least twice a month
- You know you are the friend of a family with a child with cancer when you call to check the chemo schedule and ask, "How will her counts be on, say, the 11th?" before you schedule a birthday party
- You have been asked by more than 25 friends and family members, "So, when is his next treatment?"
- Your four year old's critique of the medical student's examination skills is the same as the supervising physician's
- A younger sibling identifies a nipple as "my port site"
- Your daughter has more Beanie Babies in her room than the specialty store in the mall
- You really think this list is funny, when most normal people either don't get it or start to cry!
- When your seven year old begins to sound like Doogie Howser, MD
- You give out barf buckets as birthday party favors
- When a Raio Flyer® wagon is considered an essential transportation device
- When you walk down the hall in your house holding your baby and feel odd because you're not trailing an IV pole
with the other hand
- When the siblings want to know what the child's counts are to see if they can go inside and eat at McDonald's
- You think nothing of taking your 3 year old into a department store in his underwear because he has thrown up on his last set of clothes and you are an hour away from home and have an important doctor's appointment
- Six months after treatment ends and the hair starts to grow back
someone stops you in the grocery store and says, "I just love
her haircut. Where did you get it done ?"
- When you send copies of this list to all your cancer-parent friends
- When your idea of funny is to ask, "Where's your line?" and then giggle while your toddler takes off all of her clothes looking for iteven though you know it has just been removed
- You can reset the IV machines overnight, in your sleep, every 30 minutes without waking up once and still call it a good nights sleep!!!
- You have a kid who did not wake up by 5 AM on Christmas morning
- Your kid takes more pills than you
- When you say "Get up and smell the coffee" your kid says "The coffee's going to make me puke"
- When your kid asks for a Happy Meal® you don't say, "Wait until we get home to eat." Rather, "Really?" (unless of course your kid is on prednisone, when you say, "A Happy Meal or a Super-Sized Value Meal?")
- Your best friend buys you a relaxation tape for your birthday and you swear it doesn't work right
- You cannot try auroma therapy for yourself because the smells trigger nausea in your kid
- Your kid wears out a pair of Nikes® pushing an IV pole around the hospital during BMT recovery
- The "CK" on your tee shirt stands for Chemo Kid, not Calvin Klein®
- You make Jell-O® with Pedialite®
- You draw smily-faces on your isolation masks
- Your kid has received enough get-well cards to fuel a small bon-fire
- Your child receives soooo many toys while in the hospital that at Christmas time that you can now open your own toy store
- When you are thankful for steroids because there will not be turkey leftovers after the Thanksgiving meal
- Every little thing can make you cry in a heartbeat, but this list, on the other hand, has you rolling on the floor!
- When your child is estatic because all she's getting is counts from her arm and a shot in her leg (Now that's a good day on the chemo ward!)
- You can tell the nurses where their supplies are
- When you can whip up a seven-course meal in minutes for a six-year old having a prednisone pig out
- When your child tackles you screaming, "I'm starving to death! Why won't you feed me?!" in public and you can laugh instead of scolding them for their manners
- You can make a variety of arts and crafts out of hospital supplies: isolation masks become turtles and spinal fluid tubes filled with glitter and baby oil make great key chains
- When the doctor finally enters the examination room and finds you and your child with latex glove powder around your mouth from blowing up the gloves
- The nurses and techs call out, "see you next week!" with true joy knowing that you will pass on all the get-well candy
("No way I can eat that, I'll throw up!") and the leftover "bribe-sicles" that you couldn't get her to eat
- When it's time for your 2 year to have her vital signs taken and she lifts her arm and sticks out her leg, without crying or fighting you
- Your child names pills after superheros
- When you are helping your daughter, the sibling, pull her hair into a ponytail and she says, "Look at my forehead, I have great veins there don't I? If I ever need to get a shot, I could get it there!"
- When you have a collection of "throw-up buckets" in every room of your house!
- At dinner your, one son refers to ketchup as blood and the son with ALL corrects him because blood is a darker red.
- The local small town emergency room calls you at home and asks what size huber needles to stock in case they have to access your child's port and then ask if you could inservice them.
- The guys use viale tops instead of poker chips on poker night
- When you think that anything that your child will eat and keep down is a "nutritious meal", even if it is chocolate cookies and candy
- Your two-year old learns his colors from all the pills he has to take!
- All your body lotion and tattoo bandaids are gone because
the doll needed Emla® too!
- When all the other boys in the seventh grade shave thier heads to look as cool as your son.
- When your 6 year old is making appointments for the nursing staff to do their manicures, because the love her nail art.
- A wing of the pharmacy is now dedicated to your family.
- Training for the New York City Marathon consists of laps around the Pediatric Oncology Ward with your kid in her wheel chair.
- When your child has done all of the puzzles in the play room at the hospital so many times that she/he can now do them in five minutes with the pieces upside down.
- Your 2 year old (with a chest port) points to your left breast and says with confidence to the oncologist: "That's Mommy's owie!"
- Your child has his/her own website to keep family and friends updated on his/her progress because calling everyone gets to be too expensive and repeating the report over and over is tiring.
It is so helpful to catch a little light-hearted fun now and then.
A nurse at Riley's
Children's hospital gave me a print out of "You know you are a parent of cancer when...." So many hit home and I
laughed so hard I cried.
I've been keeping up with your page since I believe almost the beginning.
It just gets bigger and better. I posted the web address at the parents room
at University Hospital in Columbia Mo. Thanks for all that you do.
Thank you very much.... your site is just wonderful and a GREAT resource...
(Daddy to Abby)
You Know You're the Babysitter of a Kid With Cancer ...
You Know You're a Teen With Cancer ...
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