Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Appointment with Dr. Jahan Tomorrow

Mommy's condition has worsened still in just one week. She has very little control over her legs, and is unable to walk any distance at a normal pace. This is possibly due to the cancer invading nerves in her spine. Along with her immobility, she is also experiencing pain in her left arm and can barely move it. I think she has developed tolerance to the pain medicine, since the current dosage offers very little relief and becomes ineffective in just a couple of hours.

We have a follow-up appointment with Dr. Jahan tomorrow at 3:30pm, so we ask you to please pray extra hard for us tonight. During our last meeting, Dr. Jahan told us that he would decide whether or not we could try another treatment, but based on her worsened condition, I doubt that he will allow us to continue with chemo. We will be getting another CT scan to see if the cancer has progressed, but I don't know if it's even necessary to take a scan since she has gotten so noticeably sicker. Our hope is that with this new scan, they will be able to find and radiate the cancer spots that are causing her the most pain and discomfort, so please pray that the radiation oncologists will effectively treat her mets(cancer that has spread to other parts of her body). Please also pray that Dr. Jahan will be able to find new, effective therapies to fight mommy's cancer, or at the very least reduce her pain and give her back her energy and ability to move.

We will also discuss pain management methods with him tomorrow. For now, it would be helpful to get a walker or wheelchair so that I can take mommy outdoor. She hasn't been outside in five days, and I think she would benefit from breathing some fresh air and being in a different environment. We are also considering setting up at-home-care, so that mommy will have access to trained nurses and hospital equipment at anytime during the day. Please pray that we will be able to find a way to reduce her pain and keep her comfortable. What I really want is a cure for the cancer, but for now it seems that we can only give her palliative care.

I started a part-time job last week, so mommy does not have her secretary, cook, masseuse, house cleaner, jester, punching bag, hug and kiss dispenser, nurse, and annoying pest of a daughter one or two days a week. I worry when I am not with her, but the day or two away gives me purpose and escape, and thankfully, her church friends have graciously offered to check-in on her and even make dinner for us on those days. We are so, so thankful for the loving community He has blessed us with. Please pray that I will be able to trust God to take care of my precious darling, and please pray that I will be able to discern my mother's needs and find a way to balance and take care of the different parts of my life.

Lastly, please pray for transparency(IV term), comfort, and peace in our family. Ask God to give us ten thousand memorable moments of laughter, love, and joy, and please ask Him to hold us Tams in the biggest, warmest, tightest neverending hug. Thank you!

P.S. I am not going to spell or grammar check this, so please don't judge me.
P.P.S. Here is my favorite picture of her

Monday, July 18, 2011

It's getting increasingly difficult to update this blog

It's hard for me to explain everything, because that requires me to face our current situation and then share it, but we desperately need love, support, prayer, so here we go... Mommy's cancer is growing in different areas and causing her a lot of pain and fatigue. She spends the majority of her day sleeping and the rest of it grumpy from pain, yelling at me for doing things wrong, but we still have good moments. I am the mommy now, and I do everything for her including cooking, cleaning, towelling and dressing her. My favorite moment of the day is when I tuck her into bed, give her a kiss on the forehead, and tell her that I love her so, so much.

In terms of treatment, the doctor decided last month to stop treatment and re-evaluate on the 28th of this month whether we should stop altogether. It all depends on how much energy and strength she has, but by the looks of it, she won't be continuing. For now, I am harassing her radiation doctor via e-mail and phone messages to start treatment on other trouble spots like her supraclavicular lymph nodes, clavicle, and hips, but I am having trouble reaching him. We would really like to reduce her pain so that she will be able to travel and have a bit of fun. Hawaii and Hong Kong are at the top of Mommy's travel list.

My dad is difficult. He's constantly trying to explain every symptom and pain, always rationalizing everything. Family members are frequently calling with advice on nutrition, treatment options, etc.. I don't know how to tell them that there isn't much more we can do. It has been difficult to hold on to hope, i'd like to continue hoping, but the practical, realistic side of me feels like we need to accept what's coming soon. Dr. Jahan says she may be here for only a few more months. It(I can't even type it out) is inevitable and it is coming soon.

Thank you for remembering us and showering us with love, support, prayer, baked goods, flowers, and your company. Please keep praying for us, keep asking for a miracle, especially now when we are all losing hope.