The ward Paige is in is called the Piam Browm Unit, a specialist paediatric oncology unit. I am very impressed (though I admittedly have little to compare it too) by the facilities. These include (for the children) a TV, XBox 360 and laptop for every bed, two play rooms - one for children and the other for teengaers and a play specialist (what a great job!). The adults have the benefit of showers, laundry facilities, a kitchen and quiet rooms where children are not allowed. You could live here. At the moment, one of us does. As do the other parents.
Of course, patient care matters more than the number of XBoxes and in that regard we are also happy. The senior doctors on the case obviously have a large amount of cancer expertese, while the nursing team are very experienced and knowledgeable. And the whole operation is geared toward children. Paige, being the only baby at the moment, gets a lot of affection!
Nothing like being around other people in similar (and worse)situations to put things into perspective. Paige is still (otherwise) healthy and in good spirits, with all major organs functioning as normal. No tumours or major complications. Also she does not understand what is happening. But it is much harder for the older children to come to grips with - not to mention the side effects of the chemo and the constant poking and prodding.
Having said that, many of the children who have had cancer for a while appear to be getting with life as normal. The 6-year old girl whom we met last week is more grown up and mature than some children twice her age.
There are good days and bad. At the moment we are enjoying the good days.