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Riding the roller coaster once again.

HeatherBelieves's picture
HeatherBelieves
Posts: 1
Joined: Apr 2013

My Journey........

Started in 2009 with my mom down playing not feeling well for a while. She ended up in the ER in May of that year. In a matter of hours my life changed in a way I never expected it to. My best friend, my mom had cancer. The tumor on her ovary was causing a bowl obstruction. She had surgery the next day. A complete hysterectomy. The surgeon said he got all but a few specks and chemo would take care of the rest. At that time my focus was getting her healed from surgery then we could focus on the cancer. She ended up staying in the hospital for 19 days. She had a E. coli infection. The on call surgeon decided to open her back up to drain it. Then they put a wound vac on her stomach. Us trusting the dr did not second the choice. So she came home with it. My dad and I had to give her I.v. Antibiotics for weeks after. They made her so sick, she lost so much weight. She had a nurse come twice a week for the wound vac. That was such a horrible experience. I could hear her scream when the nurse would take it off to change the dressing. This went on for a few months. The emotional drain it took on my mom was awful. My patents finally had enough and talked to the surgeon (the worst one ever). He sent her to another dr that decided to just sew her wound back up. If I could hug that guy I would. All these months I was thinking this needs to heal, she has cancer. We need to be doing something about that. With the experience with that one surgeon my aunt and I tried to convince my mom to go to Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit, Mi. She didn't want to have to drive an hour every time going to the dr. But she caved and went there. I am so happy she did. In my heart I believe if she didn't, the care would have been not so good. She had six rounds of chemo. I lived at home. So I was able to be there every day. But I still couldn't do enough it seemed. Her losing her hair and being sick. She was left with nerve damage in her hands from chemo. But we did receive great news and her cancer was in remission!!!!!!!(march of 2010)
That experience sure showed me how strong my mom was. And how strong my parents are. She had such a support system. Of friends, family, and neighbors who became family!! I will always be great full for them! I forever treasure the good times my mom had in the next 3 years. With any cancer I would think its always on your mind. Every day I thought what if it comes back. But we enjoyed the time we spent together. I got married march 2012. She was with me every step of the way!!! I wanted to go away and get married. She wanted me to have the big wedding. To have my dad walk me down the aisle. Because she never had the "wedding" that she dreamed of. I wanted to give her that. I am glad I did I. It was a great experience. And I got to have her there with me!
Sadly in January her cancer had returned. She kept it from every body that the dr was watching something on her last 3 cat scans. They did a 9 hour surgery on February 21st. They got as much of the cancer as they could. It had spread. She had complications again. This time with pneumonia and a collapsed lung. She spent a few days in the ICU. And was close to having a breathing tube. In the end she was able to come home. And didn't have to be on oxygen. Was awesome!
She had a cat scan 3 weeks ago and they found 3 blood clots in her lung. So she's on shots twice a day that my dad gives her. I see all this it draining her mentally. She had her first chemo again last Friday. And so the roller coaster continues. The difference is I'm not at home. I'm not there every single day. I'm there a lot. I never go more than a day without seeing her and I talk to her everyday. But I still feel guilty. This is my first time going on here. I'm hoping to find some inspiration!!!!!!!
Thank you for reading my long story!

love4life
Posts: 33
Joined: May 2010

I certainly understand where you are coming from.  You've been through a lot with your mom and this time it's different with not living with her while she's going through it.  You shouldn't feel guilty.  I'm sure your mom appreciates the time you do spend with her and maybe it's just a little easier on her that you aren't there for some of the heart wrenching moments that happen.  My mom has lived alone for years and while she enjoys our company she is equally as happy when we leave her to her piece and quiet.  She has told me that straight out.  You may see at some point that your dad could use a break and maybe you could relieve him for a few hours or a day so he could do something for himself.  You've been through this before and you know how mentally draining it can be.  I'm sure your mom will tell you if she needs something.  Let go of the guilt and enjoy the time you can spend with her.  Life's to short for guilt and regrets.

grandmafay's picture
grandmafay
Posts: 1627
Joined: Aug 2009

Guilt really is a wasted emotion. I know that is easier to say than believe. Cancer is not only a horrible disease. It is also a sneaky one. Just when you begin to believe that things are good, it sometimes rears its ugly head again. Those reoccurrences are hard on everyone. You need to remember that you are doing the best you can right now. That is all you can expect from yourself. We are often harder on ourselves than others are. Your mother knows you are there for her even when you are not physically there. She knows you love her. That is what counts. The roller coaster ride is hard enough all by itself. Don't buy a ticket on the guilt train, too. Take care, Fay

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