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Gamma Knife Surgery - I hate this cancer!

lovingwifedeb's picture
Posts: 183
Joined: Aug 2010

After Bob’s brain surgery on January 12th it had been decided that he needed to be treated with Gamma Knife Surgery. This procedure was done on Tuesday, February 1st, it was a long process that started at 6 in the morning and we walked out of there by Noon. In the two weeks after Bob’s brain surgery his tumor had started to regrow and instead of the 1/2 hour of radiation planned his doctor decided to be on the aggressive side and treat him with 2 hours.

As this news was being delivered to me by his doctor the words - “larger after surgery” & “regrowing” kept echoing in my head. Bob was prepped and snoring in his chair ready to be rolled away for his radiation treatment. This whole morning was really frightening to me and so was this news of tumor regrowing and as everyone left the room I couldn’t hold back my tears any longer. I realized that I hadn’t really cried since last summer when I had my meltdown. This treatment was getting the best of me today and I couldn’t sort my feelings in all this craziness. Thinking back on the past weeks... one doctor saying he got all the tumor and removed all lymph nodes, now Bob is cancer free, that was in July. Then a brain tumor being removed with a doctor saying he got “most all” of it, that was in January. Now another doctor saying yes, this time he thinks he will get it all with gamma knife, this is February. We are talking 7 months... yes, I want to believe...

I find my heart tearing apart in my chest and my tears rolling silently down my face as I spent 2 hours waiting for Bob to return to me. I have to wonder would I have what it takes as Bob does to wake up each morning knowing it might not be my best days any longer. I admire him more and more for the man he is and strives to be. He does not complain because of his diagnosis but strives to do his best with what he has been given.

I hate this cancer with every cell of my being. Since Bob’s diagnosis I have read there are a lot of patients that have learned to be grateful for having cancer. I may be just the caregiver but I feel damn close to the subject of cancer and everything I have learned so far. I am not that grateful yet. I am not sure Bob is there yet either. BUT... I am reaching in places inside myself that I did not know existed and had it not been for Bob’s diagnosis I don’t know if I could have explored myself this deeply if for any other reason. I’m sure I have a long ways to go and I don’t look forward IF this cancer road takes me there.

So, we wait until March 7th for one more test, one more deep breath.

lovingwife to Bob, stage 4

Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2011

I have read some of your posts, and haven't been able to make myself reply. My husband is also stage 4, and somehow, posting on here makes it all too real. Please know, Deb, that I hear everything you are trying to say, and totally understand your fear, frustration and pain. I will hold you and your husband in my heart on March 7th. You are not alone in your apprehension surrounding test results. One word from the doctor changes everything forever, it seems. It's so strange that even though I know first-hand a lot of what you are going through, I still don't know what to say. You are right....we are digging way deeper than I had ever planned on digging. I hope that you are surrounded by wonderful friends and family. I can't imagine this journey without them. I got the nerve to go to Wellness Community for help. My only question was, "Does this really work?". The therapist assured me that it does. I don't see how they can help unless they have the miracle we need so badly. Deb, one thing we both know for sure is that we love our husbands dearly, and every kiss and whisper now has such a strong meaning. Maybe that is the "grateful" people talk about. I am terribly grateful to truly understand how deep that love is. Some never get this until it's too late. We can treasure that, even as we fear every part of this journey.

Take care,


lovingwifedeb's picture
Posts: 183
Joined: Aug 2010

My husband says I write with too much emotion... maybe this scare some, maybe it sounds without hope. When I write it helps me sort out my feelings and by the time I'm done I feel better, I guess that's what journaling is all about. I certainly don't want to alienate people here on the board with all I have to say. I feel everyone's viewpoint is worthy no matter how emotionally I might get.

With that said... I try to find my balance with hope and acceptance in this cancer business and it's not easy for me. The more I learn the harder it becomes, especially with the melanoma cancer. It just doesn't fit the treatments like other cancers so outcomes are certainly different. When my husband and I talk about "quality of life" issues of the future and what his expectations are, so far our conversation at this point is superficial. BUT the possibility for choosing is real for him. When we talk of other treatments and how they will affect him only he can decide how to spend the rest of his life in the making. Spending years in the "sick bed" is not for everyone. So I will respect whatever he decides. What we do know for certain is that there is no cure for his stage of cancer. That is a fact. No matter how many people tell us to hope for something more.

I do know my husband gets frustrated with friends and family who with good intentions look at him and say "well, I'm glad you are doing better, looks like they are fixing everything." We, ourselves have done everything we can to educate ourselves about this disease and yet they know nothing about it. My husband is not alright, and everything is not fixed. But today he is as good as he can be. He is working and eating healthy. The cancer cells are alive and well inside of his body and until another tumor is large enough to be spot we wait.

So... I've learned to live from one test to another. Live from one doctor's visit to another. And I've only been at this since June of last year, 2010... Father's Day. It seems such a short time to change a life so drastically and yet it seems like forever.

As far as his brain goes... that test is on Monday and I am a nervous wreck. We will see if the Gamma Knife radiation worked. If not it looks like more surgery. We were lucky once...

Thank you for bravely responding Cheryl.
I do appreciate the support.

lovingwife to Bob, stage 4 melanoma

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