All about Ashley

Hi, I'm Ashley

Thanks for visiting my page. My name is Ashley and as you might have guessed, I'm sitting in a hospital bed.  Not too long ago I was home just living my happy life, never thinking that I'd soon be called a patient. In fact, when I turned nine-years-old on September 10th, all I could think of was how much fun I was having at my painting party. 

My favorite thing to do...besides to play with my dog, Hershey. Isn't she the cutest? She's an English Springer spaniel, and we have the greatest times together. In fact, I love my pets so much (I have two cats, too, Oreo and Patches), I once thought I'd like to be a Veterinarian. Now I'm not so sure.

Hello. I'm Hershey the best dog in the world!

If you met me, I think you would tell people that I'm very funny. I love to laugh, and some of my best friends, like Ariel and Carson and Gabrielle, make me laugh so hard! Of course I make them laugh a lot, too, when I make crazy faces like this one:

Now don't be scared, I'm just kidding around

One day, when I was playing with Hershey, I noticed that I had weird little red dots on my body. I had bruises, too, and I just couldn't understand what was going on. My mom and dad thought I should go to the doctor, and so that's where we all went. The doctor said, "uh-oh, your liver and spleen are enlarged." I had no clue what either of those things were, but I guessed that they were bigger than they were supposed to be, and I figured out that was bad news. Then he said "we'd better get some blood tests. You might have a medical problem called leukemia." 

Well, it turned out that the doctor was right. I didn't really understand about leukemia, and at first, to tell you the truth, I didn't want to ask any questions. Now I'm learning about it, though, bit by bit, and it's not so scary anymore. Most importantly, I found out that this disease just happens, not because of anything I did or thought of doing. And I learned that after I get some pretty strong medicines, I'll be as good as new. 

Of course I wasn't very happy about getting blood tests (since you have to get a prick through your skin), but sometimes you have to do what grownups think is best, and my parents are the very best grownups in the world, so I figured that they must know what's best. Here they are with me in this picture! 

Remember I told you that I liked art? Well, my favorite thing to draw is the sun, and you'll never guess what I got to do. That sun you're looking at is my very own art work. It is painted on a ceiling tile, just smiling down on anyone who walks into my hospital room. What a way to make the room my own, right? Well, it's not my room for much longer, since I'm going home today. 

Here's the sun I painted on my ceiling

Because my hair will be falling out for awhile (from those strong medicines I told you about that get rid of the leukemia), I was able to choose some hats to bring home. How do you like my favorite, the Scooby-Doo one?

Oh, I forgot to tell you. One of the things I was able to do today was listen to some silly clowns sing the most hilarious, disgusting song. Even when kids don't feel so hot, they just have to laugh with these clowns. I thought they were great!

My clown friends

When they were singing, my nurse Amy was fixing my IV, and their song made her start dancing around. You should have seen us all! Doesn't she look silly in this picture?

Can you see Amy and the clowns?

Oops, I forgot to tell you another thing I love to do...jump on my trampoline. I can't wait to get better from this leukemia so that I can spend more time doing that. Don't worry, the sides of the trampoline are protected with netting so that I won't fall off!

Bye, bye for now! I hope that you'll stay healthy. Ashley

Here I am at home in one of my favorite outfits

Want to read a poem about leukemia?

To the frog ponds
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Joan Fleitas, Ed.D., R.N.
Associate Professor of Nursing, Lehman College, CUNY
Bronx, New York 10468

Last updated: November 14, 2004