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Tonight is difficult

D Lewis's picture
D Lewis
Posts: 1528
Joined: Jan 2010

I am putting together a care package for my mom, of all the pretty headscarves and 'buffs' that I used when I went through my chemo and radiation treatment, and I am feeling pretty upset that she is going through this right now.

I posted a couple weeks back - she presented at the hospital on January 1st with difficulty breathing. They were able to get an X-ray and a CT scan that showed that the entire right hemisphere of her chest was taken up with a tumor mass. It took another three weeks of complications before they were able to get a successful biopsy that showed it to be small cell lung cancer. It is closing off her bronchial tubes. She has been in and out of the hospital for two biopsy surgeries, a collapsed lung, a chest cavity filled with fluid and a port installation. They would not admit her into the regional cancer center until they had checked her out of the main hospital.  Also, it appeared that they also could not get clearance from her insurance to treat her cancer, until she had been seen at the cancer center.

She starts chemo on Tuesday. Small cell is usually treated with concurrent chemo and radiation, but her tumor mass is now so large, she is not able to lie flat in the CT scanner, in order to get the necessary imaging to identify the extent of her cancer to irradiate it.  No idea right now if it has metastisized to her brain, bones or liver. So, they plan to treat her with chemo for a while, to try to shrink the mass enough so that she can lie flat to be scanned. Also, to help her breathe.

I don't mean to belittle anything that any of us experienced; and I got the whole Stage 4 shooting match, feeding tube included... but I am horrified about what she has been through already and what she will be facing.  I couldn't swallow, but she can't breathe. Small cell is horribly agressive, and while treatment may shrink the cancer, it will come back. 

She is almost 80 years old, and at this point she weighs only 113 pounds. But she wants to fight this, at least for now.  I finally figured out where all my 'fight' came from. My momma.  My hero.

Deb

CivilMatt's picture
CivilMatt
Posts: 2927
Joined: May 2012

Deb,

 

I feel very sorry for your Mom and for you.  I don’t wish these (cancer) experiences on anyone let alone one’s Mother.

 

I hope the chemo does what they hope and that all the treatments she receives are successful.

 

Best,

 

Matt

Billie67's picture
Billie67
Posts: 834
Joined: Jul 2012

I'm so very sorry for all that your mom and you are going thru. I will be praying that the chemo shrinks the mass rapidly so that she may be able and ready for all treatments and tests/procedures.
Please keep us posted.
Billie

Pam M's picture
Pam M
Posts: 2194
Joined: Nov 2009

So very sorry you and your Mom are suffering.  Horrific to think of  a mom in that spot.  Mine had COPD - it's a nightmare, watching them struggle for a breath, wishing with all your heart that if you just concentrate hard enough, and ask earnestly enough, maybe they can get a tiny bit more air into their lungs.

I am asking for the chemo to jump in with both feet.  Many of us here saw chemo make quick, amazing progress against tumor(s) - hoping her chemo does just the same, so she can get on to the next phase of fighting. 

If she has to do this, I'm glad that she'll have some of your cancer "hand-me-downs" to wear during her fight - they'll give her an extra boost.  I know it had to be hard for you to look at that stuff again - much less to think about your mom needing them.

phrannie51's picture
phrannie51
Posts: 3686
Joined: Mar 2012

It's not easy knowing that your mom is suffering (she survived larnyx cancer, and had COPD)...being unable to breath is just about as uncomfortable as it gets.  The fact that you've been thru cancer and know all the subtle details will be so helpful for her....just the fact that you KNOW, and can relate.  Now that I've been thru treatment, I've wished more times than I can count....that I'd had this knowledge when my mom was going thru it.  My mom was my hero, too...one tiny...tough little cookie. 

Tucking your mama into my pocket....

p

katenorwood
Posts: 1821
Joined: May 2012

Deb,

If she has the spirit to fight she is one tough lady.  This is one tough dx.  I truely don't know which is better Deb, having a cancer dx before another loved one gets told they now have one or visa-versa.  You have the knowledge and the spunk to get her through this though.  I will be praying for her, and passing via the net a cyber hug to you.  Our Mom's no matter the age are our Mom's and mean the world to us.    Katie

Ingrid K's picture
Ingrid K
Posts: 811
Joined: Mar 2011

Hi Deb

Sorry to hear about your Mom's current situation.  I am lucky to still have my mom also, and I can't imagine her going thru this.  The journey with this cancer is difficult for any of us, but I can't imagine watching one's mother go thru this.

Sending prayers for you and Mom.  May the chemo do its job like it has done for so many others and may Mom be one of the survivors who wil be around to tell her tale to others in years to come.

stay strong Deb !

 

NJShore's picture
NJShore
Posts: 411
Joined: Nov 2012

Deb,

so sorry to hear of your moms condition, but hearing she wants to fight, that's the good news. I hope that the chemo works hard and fast and gets her comfortable in speedy time. 

My prayers are with you both, the days ahead are not easy for either of you, but so worth  your efforts.

Keep us posted and we will be here for you,

Kari

VivianLee5689's picture
VivianLee5689
Posts: 546
Joined: Aug 2012

I am sorry to hear about your Mom's current battle.  I can barely imagine what you are going through.  You and your mom are in my thoughts.  I wish there were more I could do. 

Skiffin16's picture
Skiffin16
Posts: 8071
Joined: Sep 2009

Sorry that you have to go through this, even more so for your mother..., but you will get her through with the experience you have gained.

John

cureitall66's picture
cureitall66
Posts: 860
Joined: Aug 2012

Deb,

I'm sorry to hear this news. I know this has to be hard for you to stand by and watch her go through this. 

Stay strong and know that we are all thinking of you as you are going through this journey with her.

God Bless,

 

Cris

Tim6003's picture
Tim6003
Posts: 1490
Joined: Nov 2011

I'm sorry you both have to go through this Deb.  It truly does stink.  Such a tough mom at 80 and all that spunk you describe, yes, I guess you two are alike.

Whispered a prayer mom will get somer relief and you will continue to find the strength and wisdom to help her.  Also prayed for her team of docs to have wisdom as well.

Keep us posted, and tell mom all of us "cancer folks" say hello and we are with her in spirit!!!!

Best,

Tim

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