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My sweet Sister

Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2014

Hi all.

Where do I begin.....my sister was diagnosed with Colon Cancer 12/24/12 and told she only had a year, maybe less.  She, thank God, is still with us but is beginning to decline rapidly. 

The cancer has spread to her liver (about 80% filled with tumors), her Kidneys, her stomach lining, her pancreas, and her Sternum bone.  She now has severe swelling due to the kidneys and liver not functioning and is jaundice now in the face (not her eyes yet).  She can't walk anymore due to all the fluid on her legs and they kidneys are being crushed by her liver and the ever growing / expanding tumors in her liver so she is now catherized.   Hospice and their sweet nurses come in every day and love her.

She is the strongest person I have ever met in my life.  Always with a smile on her face.

My question is.....like most people I am sure......what does all this mean?  Does this mean I only have a few more moments, days, weeks, months with my sweet sister?

I know she is in extreme pain and they are treating that with lots of good pain meds but what about the rest....how fast does the decline begin?  How much more does she have to endure? 

I know that no one really can answer the "time line" questions but what might we expect next, just some sort of heads up.....

Thank you all

Lisa2012's picture
Posts: 142
Joined: Feb 2014



So sorry to hear that you are going through this.  I am a stage IV cancer patient and I often think this disease is wore for the caregivers than it is for me.  A timeline is not possible to determine, all is in God's hands.  Enjoy each moment you have, every day is a gift.   Prayers for you and your sister.



LivinginNH's picture
Posts: 1456
Joined: Apr 2010

Hi Tracy,

I've sent you a PM in regard to hospice and a link to an ACS site that may help to answer your questions.  Cherish your time together and take comfort in that the hospice nurses will make her crossover as peaceful as possible.

All my best,


Lovekitties's picture
Posts: 3270
Joined: Jan 2010

I lost my sister to uterine cancer 11/15/2013.

I found the Hospice nurses to be very helpful and knowledgeable.

While there are certain signs, the nurses may be your best source of the information you seek as it pertains to your sister.

Wishing her an easy journey and all of her loved ones strength and solace.

Marie who loves kitties.


fatbob2010's picture
Posts: 467
Joined: May 2012

Dear Tracy

This is a time most of us dread as either caretaker's or patient's Realistically, there is every day and minute you have together.  Since there never seems to be enough time.  My suggestion would be to not worry about how much time, but rather, how to make that time as precisous as possible.  

Much love and prayer for you, your loved one and the rest of your family.  

Peace, Art

P.S. The hosipice nurses can be your best source of help as far as what comes next.  They (IMHO) can/should address your concerns and provide this to you in the form of routine educartion.

Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2014

Thank you all for your words and message.  You are all right and I treasure each minute I have with her. 

Thank you all for your comfort

annalexandria's picture
Posts: 2573
Joined: Oct 2011

My sister died at the age of 43 from cancer.  She lived only a little over a year past her diagnosis.  This is truly a dreadful and overwhelming experience for everyone involved.  As others have said, hospice should be able to give you some idea of how much time is left.  I would say just try to spend as much time with her as you can.  Every memory that you can make now will be priceless for you in the future.

Hugs to you, and to your family~AA

Posts: 306
Joined: Jan 2010

Died within a week after jaundice showed up. Cherish the moments. If her journey is coming to an end, make it one surrounded by family, peace, and love.



Posts: 11
Joined: Mar 2014

Dear Tracy...

I am so so sorry to hear that your sister is suffering but i am sure that by you being there for her is a massive comfort. I hope she is made as comfortable and pain free as possible so you can spend quality time together and enjoy every precious moment.

My heart goes out to you both 



Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2014

I am so sorry to hear of each of your tragic stories.  It is truly heartbreaking to know that my sister won't be with me for much longer.

An update - she has good and bad days now, is jaundice, especially in her face, but the nurses say that is to be expected.  However, they did say to watch her eyes, which thankfully are clear at this time.

She is still in pain and is beginning to see "hallucinations", hopefully that is the morphine they give to combat the pain.  She is so brave - much more so that I could be - I think.  She is now pretty much bed-ridden as the fluid can't be drained from her safely and they don't think it is a good decision for her to move.    She still hasn't lost that smile or sweeet spirit yet. 

Thank you all again - this is a nice release for me.....

peterz54's picture
Posts: 259
Joined: Feb 2012

Tracy  I also recommend hospice.   My wife Patricia passed a while back and it was liver tumors which were the cause.   They were also the source of significant pain which I'm sorry to say the hospital did not manage well.   Our local hospice was in our home 24/7 for the final week.   Once hospices nurse took over, pain managment was far better and almost seamless.  They were right there, always attentive.  I don't believe they relied on morphine or at least not totally.   



Posts: 4
Joined: Mar 2014

I visited with her this past weekend.  She has jaundice now in her eyes, eating very little but loves Starbucks Mocha Frap's.  I made sure to bring her one......she has be come addicted LOL.

She has constant pain in her stomach from the spread of it to her pancreas now but they have begun giving her Methadone with the liquid fast acting Morphine now.

Hospice is there EVERY day and say that it is only a matter of a few weeks.  Without Hospice I know my family and especially my sweet sister would be completely lost.  She loves her nurse and I know the feeling is mutual.  What a sweet lady she is.

So, here we sit, waiting, which is horrible to think and say, but waiting I am.....not sure what else to do.

Thanks to all for listening.

annalexandria's picture
Posts: 2573
Joined: Oct 2011

as hard as it is, it's a gift, really, to be with them at the end.  Waiting together is a little less painful than waiting alone.  I'm sure she appreciates your presence.

Warm hugs to you both~AA

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