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lilac39
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2004

My mother had breast cancer 5 years ago. Had mastectomy, and a whole round of chemo. She got her scans every 6 months religiously. And she remained clean of recurrent cancer. In June 2003, she was dx with mets. to brain and lungs. She recieved chemo and full brain radiation. At first she responded to the treatment, but now it appears the cancer is growing again. My father is not dealing with this very well at all. It is hard enough knowing that I am going to lose my mother, but now I feel I will lose him too shortly after. I have such an awful feeling of gloom and dread. How do I help him? He is a very private man, and won't even ask for help if he needed.
Anyway I just need a place where I can vent and talk to other people who are in the same sort of place in their lives. People around me are all supportive, and try to be there for me, but I don't even want to talk to them as I don't think they have a clue as to what this feels like.

JaneEllen
Posts: 6
Joined: Dec 2003

I am going through a similar situation with my mother dx with small cell lung cancer with no cure. They say her time is limited to months. She has been in the hospital for a month now and she is only 55 years old. I feel your pain, frunstration, sorrow, and fear. There are so many emotions that you go through. It still sometimes doesn't seem real that this is really happening.
May I suggest that you spend as much time as you can with your parents to help fullfil your needs of being a part of what is going on and at the same time try to balance that with giving them some of their own time together. Maybe you have already tried, but if you could talk to your dad and tell him how you are feeling. Ask him for advice and maybe this can help him to open up himself so you can figure out his needs. Unfortunately the saying "time heals" is so true. I have realized that with my moms situation. I am extremely close with my mother and since she has been in the hospital for 4 weeks now and such a whirlwind of emotions that I have gone through as much as I hate to admit it, things are different now that she is not healthy it is just like she is not the same person anymore which makes me so sad and upset. LIfe does go on and things will get better with time. So do the best you can to take care of yourself and keeping yourself healthy and do the things that you need to do so that you will not have any regrets or feel guilty about anything. Try to keep your chin up there are others that share your feelings about what is going on with this terrible disease called cancer.
I hope this is helpful.
God Bless you and your family.
You will be in my prayers.
Sincerely,
Janeellen

lilac39
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2004

Thank you JaneEllen for your response. Nothing really makes this any easier, but it does help knowing there are others out there who understand what you are going through.
Mom also is not the same person she was before she got sick. She has received full brain radiation and it has effected her short term memory and ability to really think clearly. She and I have alway been close, normally a day did not go by that she and I would talk on the phone, and she also worked part time where I work. So it already feels like I've lost my mama.
The main thing I want to be sure of, is she does not suffer and I don't want her to be afraid. My dad and I finally had a long talk, he is doing better then I thought, and he promised my mother he would not give up when she is gone. So that has made me feel some what better.
God bless you and your family also, and perhaps we can stay in touch, in my opinion, having people to be there for each other makes all the difference.
I also will be praying for you.
Thank you again for your post!
Karen

jsabol's picture
jsabol
Posts: 1156
Joined: Dec 2003

Dear Lilac,
I usually post at the colorectal Ca site, since I am now diagnosed and in treatment for colon Ca. I lost my dad 3 years ago to metastatic colon Ca, lungs and liver. He did really well with his original surgery and year of chemo, but 3 yrs later, it was back and he was terminal. It was such a sad time and I felt overwhelmed by the burden of facing losing him. My mom has early stage dementia, and was really not able to keep up with and deal with all the issues surrounding my dad's illness. He had hospice at home, but after he declined a lot physically, he went into a nursing/rehab center on hospice care. The experience was, despite the circumstances, very positive. He recieved all the care he needed. My mom got plenty of support (she stayed in the assisted living next door and remained there after he passed), and my sister and I were able to focus our visits on just being with him and spending time together. Maybe your dad would respond to hospice/social service contact; in the meantime, he is lucky to have a dghtr who cares so much. Good luck to you; hang in there, and take support from where ever you can find it. Judy

lilac39
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2004

Thanks Judith,
I have talked to dad about hospice, but he is adamant about not taking it. Mom pretty much does what he says. My sisters husband died a year ago from a brain tumor, he had hospice and it was not a positive experience. I do know that hospice can be a beneficial thing, but if he won't take it, my hands are tied.
I did finally get a chance to sit and talk with him, heart to heart. So I feel somewhat better knowing what he is thinking and how he is emotionally preparing.
I feel awful, but I wish sometimes that I could just disappear, until it was all over. I think they call that creative avoidance!
Thanks for your reponse.
Karen

mugsey
Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2004

My Mom is 80 and diagnosed with anal C. I'm so grateful this network exists. She is starting treatments of chemo w/radiation. None of us knows what to expect, but knowing others have done well with it helps us keep hope.

Ariel
Posts: 1
Joined: Feb 2004

This is my first time posting on this site...so bear with me.

My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer almost 10 years ago. It is easier to tell you where the cancer isn't than were it is. She is currently participating in a clinical trial to do something about the tumors in her liver.

My dad has his good weeks and bad weeks in dealing with my mom's illness. Mom is dying. Period. Sometimes I am able to discuss the "after" with him, other days not. My parents have been married for 35 years. I don't think that my dad will be around long when mom goes - she is his life, his world, his everything.

lilac39
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2004

Ariel
I feel for you, I am at the same place. My mother has taken a rapid down hill slide. So I know in my heart we are losing her. And like you sometimes Dad will talk and other times he won't. I guess what I am learning is to just be there, so that when he does need to talk, I am there. Dad and Mom will have been married 50 yrs this May, they were high school sweet hearts. Does not look as though she will be here for the 50th occasion. And I feel like you that my Dad will not be here long once she is gone. THe crazy thing, his health had always been worse, the whole family had always assumed he would go before Mom, and I always thought Mom would be ok, but not him, she is his entire world.
We can stay in touch.
If you wish my direct email address is lroberts@catt.com
I will keep you and your family in my prayers.
Karen

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