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my father has lung and brain cancer

kj165's picture
kj165
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2010

I decided to sign up on this site because my father has lung and brain cancer. He was diag. oct 2008 and given six months to live. He is currently still alive, however, in the past month his health has taken a turn for the worse. He is now home with my mom and in care with hospice. I am having a very very hard time with this. I am almost 34 and i guess no one is ever really ready to loose their parent. He has ok days and not ok days. I am told by my mom to be strong along with my sister. I am strong in front of my father and most of the time in front of them but i am breaking down. It is so hard to see the strongest man i have ever known or will ever know lie in that bed and wilt away. He can no longer walk and he just looks so very ill. I feel alone even though my husband is wonderful and very supportive i feel like this is the hardest thing to deal with. I feel helpless that i can not help him. I look at him and think to myself how sorry i am for him. He doesn't deserve this. I guess i'm wondering if anyone out there knows what i and him are going through.
Karen

Barbara53's picture
Barbara53
Posts: 659
Joined: Aug 2009

Losing your father to cancer is so hard, especially if he was a great one like my dad. Many many private tears were shed during his last weeks, and many more followed after he passed on. In the last week or so my dad was "not himself," and that's one of the toughest things to accept. It is okay to cry. This hurts like hell, and will take a long time to heal.

Meanwhile, keep blowing your nose and sitting with your dad, helping your Mom and thanking your husband for being there. This is temporary, and things will get better.

kj165's picture
kj165
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2010

Thank you for your kind words. It is just so hard to see him like this. I cry myself to sleep wondering if he knows just how bad it is, and wondering if he knows just how sick he is. He is not himself some days and due to the brain tumor and all the radiation he had on his brain he often gets very very confused. While he knows he has a nurse from hospice come to the house, i wonder if he realizes what that really means. It breaks my heart.

Barbara53's picture
Barbara53
Posts: 659
Joined: Aug 2009

I think you will be able to make it through the coming days better if you find a copy of Final Gifts, by M. Callahan, and at least skim it. It's a very sensitive book written by an experienced hospice nurse about the death experience. Chances are good that your father is not in a great deal of discomfort, and that his internal systems are shutting down in a logical order. Whether or not he gets it doesn't matter. But he is spiritually alive, and can hear words of love and caring. Please read. It is also possible that some of his confusion is metaphorical communication often used by people who are dying.

And that is one cool snowman photo!

kj165's picture
kj165
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2010

Thank you so much for your kind words. I have already purchased the book and hopefully it will arrive by the weekend. Today my Dad had a pretty good day. He said he really wants to get up and walk. He is too weak and due to the Rhuematoid Arthritis he has in his spine it just isn't possible. I feel bad for him. I worry about him and what he is thinking every single minute of the day....to the point of tears at times. All these years and still no cure for cancer..i don't get it, and i don't believe it.

abfaul6
Posts: 9
Joined: Mar 2010

I hope you read the book suggested. My husband is were your dad is. My husband has NSCLC and had had several small strokes. He is in hospice care. I also have a daughter who is dealing with her dad failing in health. Focus on your mom. She needs you to support her support your dad. Try to remind yourself - "its the disease talking" - it helps take some of the pain. I know its about a month since you posted I hope you are OK>
My regards to your mom.
Ann

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