Wednesday, February 13, 2008

When and How

For over a year my mom has had pain in her shoulder. Originally doctors thought it had to do with her diabetes (adult onset). When the pain became unbearable in the last few weeks, she went to her doctor. The MRI showed something and she was referred to an oncologist. A biopsy this morning confirmed cancer.


From just outside the hospital, my dad called on his cell to say it's good news but not 100% good news. Good news because it can be treated and controlled. The bad news - he didn't share the bad news - I had to g0o0g1e for the bad news. Specifically, there is no cure and most people die within 3 to 5 years of diagnosis.

* * * * *

Two nights ago - after hearing she may have cancer - I had an intense flash back of giving birth to C. Before I was knocked out. In my flash back I recalled the intense fear that I was about to die and so was my baby (who had stopped moving earlier in the day). Everything moved so fast once my water broke and we saw just how thick it was with meconium. I honestly had no time to acknowledge my fear(s), between that and the contractions. We had to get out of our house and to the hospital. Period.

Two nights ago I cried myself to sleep - quietly, so as not to wake baby C in the other room - and A was in bed next to me, fetching tissues and listening to me whisper about my feelings.

I am afraid to lose my mom.

When I was in labour at the hospital I remember being surprised at the sudden realisation that I wanted my mom there. And the next day, when she was there I felt so happy. And safe.

* * * * *

We all know that at some point we will lose our parents. I have wondered when and how. This cancer is most likely the way that I will lose my mom.

* * * * *

Something else about the birth: I learned that random scary bad sh*t can and does happen. I think I was crying about that as well the other night. Kind of like my miscarriage before I got pregnant with C. It felt like initiation. I was no longer innocent. I still feel so pessimistic now as a result. While pregnant with C, I had a hard time settling in and just being. Because random scary bad sh*t happens. The way the birth went... random scary bad sh*t.

I have to remind myself that I survived. Because I don't want to be a victim. But I have to say that RSBS is always an option for me in ways it was not before ttc.


B said...

I am so so sorry about your mom. And all of the sad and horrible feelings that swirl around it, including your flashbacks.

If you'd like to email about this offline, I work for a cancer charity that serves blood cancer patients and their families. (I'm not putting the name here so that you don't have weird visitors who just googled the charity's name.) There are some fantastic resources, including something called the F.irst C.onnection P.rogram. They match newly-diagnosed patients AND family members/friends/supporters with another person who has been in your shoes. If you were to request a match, they would find a daughter whose mother was dx with myeloma and set up a call with her. That's just one support example, but please know there are lots of resources.

Just researching myeloma is scary. Dr Google is definitely not going to help you feel better. If you're up to it, email me and I'll help you find your local chapter.


sandra said...

Thank you. I am going to sit with it a bit, then I may very well e-mail you. Thanks again.

owl and pcat said...

so so so sorry.
It is just horrible for you and your mum and your family.
sending luck and love and positive thoughts your way

owlie from enough grows

Lo said...

So sorry, Sandra.

I would encourage you to step away from Dr. Google and if possible, speak to your dad and/or your mom's caregivers to get information about her specific case....

Thinking of you.