Well, it certainly has been a long time since I’ve posted anything. So much has happened. I thought it had been longer than I thought, I believe my last post was September 2016. Not too bad, I suppose.
I know I had planned on writing about my niece’s quinceneara, but that has come and gone. And trust me, it was not at all what we expected. She looked beautiful and that what she wanted.
Next was my daughter’s quince, scheduled for March 18 of this year. If you are observant, you noticed I referred to it in a past tense. Yup, it has unfortunately been postponed… maybe cancelled completely. We don’t really now right now.
As I write this, I am torn between anger, fear, anguish, and a plethora of other emotions.
Cancer, has showed its ugly head in our lives once again. I have written about cancer before, HERE and I am here to share and talk and really… Just vent and rant about my emotions. Here is the only place I can.
It has come back in my mother’s body. This time… her brain. . . It has been some journey so far…
For a while, mom had been complaining of headaches. As is our custom, we attributed it allergies or blood pressure. Nothing was helping with the headaches. She would try take some Tylenol, or aspirin but nothing really helped. She would try to sleep it off, but again, with not much success. This had been going on for awhile until one day…
My sister had a doctors appointment to have a pregnancy check up. Mom went with her, dealing with her head pain on the 45 minute trip there, the appointment, and the 45 minute trip back. Once she got to my sister’s house, she had to rest. Once my father got there to pick her up, her head hurt so badly she was in tears. Telling my father that the pressure and pain behind her right eye felt as though it would burst out of her head.
He drives her to the ER, 45 miles away, and when he gets there and she gets off the truck, she almost collapses. Of course they took her in right away, and then it is hurry up and wait for test and their results. She has bleeding in the brain and needs surgery immediately!
What?!?!?! I remember crying when dad got off the phone with me. I remember trying to figure what to do. My kids were in school. My sister, who was due any day, and her husband were waiting to see what was going to happen. Waiting because they had to move her from the hospital she was at to one that could do the surgery. That was either San Antonio, and hour plus away from us, or Houston which is four hours plus away. Also, we didn’t know if dad would be allowed to travel with her wherever she was moved. Waiting was torture!
Finally we know the particulars, dad was able to go and someone had to pick up his truck. My chest hurts now as I remember those moments. Dad trying to be strong and holding in all his emotions. I hated him having to go through what he did all alone. My brother and his wife, took my daughter and I to seem them that evening. My son stayed at my aunt’s house while we found out what was going on.
She was in ICU when they brought her to the hospital in San Antonio. They performed more tests. We stayed late waiting to see what was going to happen. My poor brother was so sick. He had a bad cold or flu, not sure but he was very sick. In the ICU waiting room, there are no hours. So at around three in the morning, we finally try to find some place to sleep. Let me tell you, trying to find a place at that hours SUCKS! We wanted to be close, and ended up in the worst place! Hard to sleep, but some how we did and were up and out by seven am!!
Back at the hospital, it is more waiting. Talking to my sister on the phone off and on. She ends up going into labor! This really upsets mom and upsets my sister as well. They both want to be there for other. Life has a way of doing what it wants.
As I write this, it’s almost a blur. I know we come home and plan on staying, but an aunt says she will be going back to stay the night the night before her surgery and my children and I go along. The next morning was scary.
She was scheduled for seven and we figured we would be there with plenty of time since we spent the night so close. Plans have a way of changing or at least not going as planned. We got there just in time to rush to her room, kiss her, tell her we loved her, and see her wheeled off for surgery.
I was so scared. My kids didn’t understand what was going on really, but knew the surgery was important. I remember looking around at my mother’s sisters and brothers, their spouses, their kids, and wondering… why? My daughter slept most of the time while my son played on his phone; both not knowing how serious the situation truly was.
My sister was unable to go because she had her baby the night before. A beautiful baby girl, MiCorazon! Mom was happy she did get to see a pic of her right after she was born! My father was lost in his own world of introversion. My kids were in their own worlds. I needed comfort or peace or someone to talk to me. My aunts talked and my cousins talked, but it seemed like a lot was within themselves. I guess it hard to know what to say to someone whose mother’s is have brain surgery. Trying to be civil was difficult at times, but I know my family was there for support.
When my brother and his wife arrived, I felt almost whole again. She helped me when I was on the edge and didn’t even know it completely until she got there. The doctor came out to talk to us, but dad was close to the door and so he talked to him. I heard very little of what was said, and before I knew it, they were on their way down the hall! Because I was in a wheelchair, I could not just whip around and follow. But my sister-in-law being the great woman she is, was trying to help me as fast as we could. It was almost hilarious if not for the need to move. It was like a skit from SNL, I was trying to unlock one side and her the other. I think as one point, we undid what the other had did. I was a good 10 seconds before we were mobile. I had a new respect and love for my sister-in-law after this period of time.
We are only allowed two people at a time. Most times we listened. She came out perfect! It wasn’t long before she was sitting in a chair, which shocked her doctors. I mean… BRAIN surgery!!! She was great until the pain killers wore off. Mom was doing great. We headed back home after and waited. Waiting is a hard thing to do, when all you want is answers. Life is like that. . . Making you wait.
Once home, we tried to get things ready for when she arrived. Rearranging things. Deep cleaning. Just doing and moving and going. That was until I fell. Find out she is coming home and I fell hard that morning. I wanted to cry, but my kids were almost freaking out.
Mom was home Sunday night. She went to the ER late Monday afternoon. It was just seven days, start to finish. Well, almost. It was hurry up and wait again for the results of the mass they removed from her brain, which was approximately the size of a baseball. Yup, a baseball. Can you imagine, a baseball in your brain and then having it removed?! Scary.
Waiting for the results was almost as hard as hearing the results.
Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma… Stage IV… no cure.
Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC) is a common form of kidney cancer, which is what mom had six years ago. We were told they had got it all. Well, they didn’t. It is now in her brain, in her adrenal glands, and in her lungs.
She has finished her radiation treatment which scared the hell out of her. Why? Because in radiation they pin point the radiation to the cancer and you cannot move. Her’s was in the brain so she had to have her head encased and imprisoned so she would not move at all. That is a tall order for someone who is claustrophobic. But she did, and she isn’t afraid of tight spaces anymore.
Then a short time after radiation, she was bleeding in her brain again! Again, she is ICU! The doctors seem to believe she was over doing herself. Doing too much too soon. Mom is such an independent that getting her to realize her limits is hard.
She has another CT scan scheduled for next week and then she will begin Chemo. . . pills. She has already lost some hair from the radiation we believe. Her sight is bad. Her taste has caused her to dislike almost everything. Yet, she is able to walk. She has her memory, for the most part… she knows who we all are. She is functional.
We are very blessed. I pray for her everyday. Every night. I cry almost every day. At times it seems unreal about what all is happening. I believe I have faith that mom will be fine. That my children will have their grandmother for a long time, like I’ve had mine. My father’s mother pasted away when I was 30, and my mother’s mother is still kicking and being a lively soul.
But there is no question, my mother is going to die. Everything the doctors are doing are to help with pain and stunt the growth of the cancer.
My mother is dying. Everyday is one day closer. I typed those words and I think, so am I.
I could get hit by a car or have a heart attack or just slip and fall and hit my head. One never truly knows when they will pass on. I have my faith that has kept me sane during this. Our Pastor and his wife and our congregation have been amazing! Yet somehow, I keep thinking that I’m waiting. Waiting for the real anger to come out. For my anger at God will come out and I’ll start to scream at Him. Making deals with Him. Daring Him to keep her alive. To let her see her great-grandchildren.
What am I going to do when she goes? What is my father going to do? How will he act? How will my children deal with losing their only grandmother?
I keep trying to stay calm for my father and my children. At times I get down, but know I can’t do that. Mom has been feeling depressed and I have to be strong for her. Show her we can deal with whatever happens and whatever doesn’t happen.
Cancer sucks. No denying that. I keep telling myself she is her now and don’t think about the other stuff. Then I start to think, but I have to prepare for things.
She tells me the other day she wants to go the funeral home to make arrangements. Father was not happy about that, but it is something that has to be done, and I do want her to have what she wants.
Can I deal with planning a funeral for my mom? And do it with my mom? God please help me!
Wine helps. . . But that’s another post.
Sorry for the post, but I had to get out and if I stopped, I don’t know if I would have been able to start up again.
I leave you with this… tell your loved ones you love them, every day. Don’t let the last words you told someone be something out of anger. Always tell them you love them. ALWAYS! You have a fight with someone… a door is slammed… someone is walking way… stop. . . turn around and tell them… I LOVE YOU!!! You can keep walking away, or them, just know that the last words were… I LOVE YOU… can’t have I hate you… be the last thing if there is an accident and those WERE the last words.
Love one another.
Respect each other.
God above all.