Thursday, June 27, 2013

Cancer Can Be A Blessing

Recently, a friends grandmother, who I've known my entire life, and even calls me her granddaughter, was diagnosed with lung cancer. And today she underwent all kinds of imaging and started her chemotherapy journey. Cancer has effected so many people in my life, Daddy having cancer has opened my eyes to how prevelent this nasty disease is all around us. It's truly disgusting how common it is, and with no real cure, only bandaids and scarce miracles .

Today my friend said that she believes that everything happens for a reason, but it is hard to find one for cancer. She's right. But in my rational crazy thought processes, ive come up with God's reasons for my Daddy getting cancer.

He was the most stressed out person I have ever known, my brother and I didn't help, but with work and money and just day to day activities, he was so stressed and sometimes really angry. Cancer forced him, literally, to lie down and relax. His stress was a different kind of stress now, stressed about his life expectancy, but at least now he was surrounded by family as much as possible and his only worries were for himself, and not work.

My Daddys cancer also gave me motivation. Motivation to get two degrees in one year, to make a life for myself with the most amazing man I've ever met. Motivation to get in the best shape of my life. The last day of this last round of radiation, one of the hospital valets told me I am the only woman he's ever seen that can lift such a large wheelchair with one arm into a trunk. My Daddy is my motivation, I need to stay in top shape to be able to take care of a 270 pound disabled man.

My Daddys cancer has also motivated me to look at my own stress levels, exercise helps me a lot, but so does eating clean. Taking out processed flours from my diet has made my mental clarity ten times better. I also am getting back into yoga to help with my stress levels. I firmly believe that stress helps fuel cancer growth, and that positive life changes can ease cancers effects.

Cancer can be a blessing in disguise. You just need to look harder.

I love you, Irene.
Grandma will be just fine <3

Monday, June 24, 2013

Taking its Toll...

This round of radiation has been very rough for Daddy... more taxing than any of the other rounds before this. Today was his last day and it was very hard getting him in and out of the house, the extensive heat today did not help at all either. He had to take more morphine than normal today because he was in such pain, but the morphine makes him so spacy and drowsy and he barely even talked to me or anyone else our entire visit. The end of radiation usually means you get to ring a bell in the lobby and everyone cheers for you shouting CODE SUNSHINE!!! Dad was not having it, he doesn't think that this round of radiation is really going to do anything for him and he wishes that he didn't have to do it at all. I just feel bad for him, he was obviously so exhausted and depressed and scared for what is to become of him now... his spine cannot be radiated anymore, so if the lesion that we just treated doesn't respond to the radiation, it will reach his already compromised spinal cord, it will paralyze more than he is now, or end his life. I know that Daddy does not have a lot of science or anatomy knowledge, and I actually feel blessed for it because his thoughts can't process like mine or my mother's... he doesn't know how bad we have it now... he doesn't know that if Sutent or the radiation fails this go round, we could be looking at the end sooner rather than later because his spine will not be able to handle it. Unfortunately, a part of me would be okay with that, it's hard enough just to watch him suffer day in and day out, I can't even imagine what it is like for him to actually experience it. Such a terrifying realization...

Friday, June 14, 2013

Radiation Round 4

Last week we met with a new radiation oncologist, we didn't really know what he was going to say because we hadn't heard from our regular oncologist regarding an MRI Daddy had a few weeks ago... Not exactly a nice feeling being left in the dark. Uncertainty is the silent worry that everyone fails to warn cancer patients and their families about. This doctor and his resident told us that they saw a mass, a tumor, on Daddy's back left side of ribs that was growing towards his spinal cord... His half steel and severely compromised spinal cord.... They thought it was most likely the cause of a lot of his new pain but there is no real way to tell or know for sure. However, it needed to be treated with radiation regardless because its growth needed to be stopped or his spinal cord would be in severe danger and it could be the end of Daddy's already on borrowed time life. Daddy is angry that the doctors can't figure out why he is in so much new pain and even angrier at the fact that he is going through another round of agonizing radiation for a maybe fix... I try to reassure him that it is a needed treatment to help extend his life, but I don't think he cares so much about that fact anymore... I would really be in shock and awe if he made it to my wedding this Thanksgiving... No matter how much I'd like him to be there, I can't get my hopes up.

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