Soon Devon was bald. I would smile the days when her hair would come out chunks at a time, I would chuckle when she would wake up with hair on her pillow, I would laugh when the trashcan became full with of those beautiful blonde locks.
It was the first sign that I could beat this child. Most of them were easier than this, she knew how to fight me. But I was getting to her, I knew I was.
She tried so hard to be happy, but her weak little body was beginning to crumble beneath me.
She would try so hard to walk, to talk, to be normal. She would see the other kids in the hospital, cheer them up. They would play board games or just sit and watch TV.
Her newest friend was a six year old boy, another cancer patient named Tate. He was always in the kids play room, playing with the other kids. It was hard for any of them to be sad when they were near him. He always made everyone smile.
Devon had overheard him talking to an older girl that Devon knew had a tumor.
"I have to go get my CAT scan" she said.
"CAT scan?" he giggled, "What's a CAT scan?"
"They're going to take pictures of my body, so they can see if I'm getting better."
"Oh," he said, "Well smile pretty!"
And she's loved him ever since.
Devon eventually started to get better, and her last day at the hospital came quickly.
She spent the day with Tate. They visited every child in the hospital, spending time with them talking and laughing. They wanted everyone to be happy on Devon's last day. And everyone was happy, except for the fact that Devon was leaving. The kids in the hospital came and went but never was it so hard for them to say good-bye to someone.
She left with a sea of hugs and a flood of cards. She would add them to her collection of cards from the other kids. "The kids who weren't sick," she always thought of them as. She didn't know why, but she had a much stronger connection with the "sick kids" and she seemed to think she would miss them much more than she missed the kids at school. Especially Tate.
She was missing them already as she arrived home, for the first time in a few months. Although still weak, she was happy for the fact that she could walk without falling over, and she didn't need to rely on someone to push a wheelchair for her.
She spent a lot of her time at home doing the same things as in the hospital. The excitement to be home soon wore off as she realized the only difference between here and the hospital was no kids to play with. Instead it was just her and her parents, who she felt bad asking to play checkers or Candyland with her every five minutes.
Devon became sad. She was too weak to go anywhere but strong enough to want to be around people. Nobody came to visit her now that she wasn't in the hospital, and she hadn't gone to school in weeks. She was dying to leave.