Oct 13, 2012 - 11:57 am
October 5th will never be looked upon the same by me and others in my family. The worst part is that we were given this false hope for months now, and the reason for it is we believed my mom was suffering from something else.
Since June, my mom complained of pain on her side. She started to get medical advice when the pain wouldn't subsidize and she was first told that it was gallstones. She had more tests done and it was determined it wasn't that but possibly some intestinal blockage. We went to see a gastroenterologist who performed an endoscopy and determined there was nothing wrong with her stomach, but he couldn't perform a colonoscopy because there was a mass there; a mass that was growing a bit since June. He suggested we go to a local hospital and enter the ER so they could see what was wrong. There, they performed a CAT scan and told us that my mom had fibroids and an overdeveloped uterine muscle. They told us this could be treated with medication or surgery. My mom went to see her gynecologist who told her that it was an overdeveloped uterine muscle and that surgery was needed.
The surgery date, however, kept getting postponed because my mother became anemic: she wasn't eating much at that point because the pain was getting worse; so bad that she couldn't even sleep normally: she would spend nights either just sitting in an armchair, standing hunched over something, or taking little walks around the house. She had to travel to the hospital for a week to get an IV with iron to help her blood improve. Meanwhile, she was taking small bites here and there of iron rich foods: liver and onions, leafy greens, was taking iron supplements as well. It was around this time where she started getting water in her legs and there were fluids collecting around her abdomen. They were worried about her heart and they performed EKGs and echocardiograms and determined there was nothing wrong with her heart. She was given water pills but they did not help her.
It wasn't until she saw another doctor that he determined she should go to the ER and stay in the hospital so they could check everything. My mom went to the hospital on October, 2nd. It wasn't until the second day there that the doctors couldn't rule out cancer. I just thought they were taking precautionary steps and making sure everything was alright with my mother; I still believed it was nothing more than an overdeveloped uterine muscle. On Thursday, they preformed another CAT scan and withdrew fluids from her abdomen to see if it was carcinogenic.
In the early hours of Friday, we received a phone call from the hospital that my mom's heart stopped and they were successful in reviving her. Her mass was pressing against her kidneys and the toxins entered her bloodstream. As her proxy, they asked if I agreed to dialysis and I did. We left to the hospital but unfortunately, her heart stopped again and they were unsuccessful in trying to revive her again. My mother, Janina, was only 65.
It wasn't until yesterday, picking up the death certificate, that we were informed that the mass inside my mother was a tumor that was growing in her pelvic area and this it was malignant.
We feel so...deceived. We were so optimistic about things because we really believed it was just her uterine muscle, that all she would need is surgery. This revelation came out of nowhere. Instead of thinking about surgery, we should have been talking about chemotherapy, radiation therapy...anything else. Now, we are without our backbone, our bedrock, without a wife, a mother, a grandmother, a friend, a great human being.
This loss was a tremendous blow to our body, mind, and spirit.