Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sunday, August 21, 2011

The saddest and happiest day

Mommy passed away early this morning.

I woke up at 1am last night to give mommy her pain meds. Then, at 3:30am, I was awoken by the sound of mommy's labored breathing and phlegmy noises. We gave her everything on the list of medicines, but nothing seemed very effective, so at 5:30am, I gave her one last dose of morphine, hoping that her breathing would steady by the time I was scheduled to give her next dose of meds at 7:30am. I gave her a kiss, said "even if you can't hear me, I am going to say I love you", and fell asleep on my own bed right next to hers. My alarm sounded at 7:25am, and I looked over at mommy's neck to see if her muscles were still straining to take in oxygen, but she was completely, peacefully still.

Every moment following that last moment has merged into a blur of calls, signatures, condolences, disbelief, and numb heartbreak. There's joy and hope, because we know that mommy will soon be dancing on the golden streets of heaven, free from pain, suffering, and sadness, but more than anything, we are so, so incredibly, indescribably sad. For 22 years, my mommy lit up my world with hugs, kisses, laughter, and the warmest love, and now that my bright light has gone, everything feels so dark and hopeless.

I will get to see her again in heaven, but for now,
I miss her so much.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Mommy is ready to go to heaven

The nurse says mommy will probably only suffer for 24-48 more hours. Even with the sedating pain meds, now a combination of three different types, mommy wakes up every few hours in pain, begging us to let her go. But soon she will be free from suffering, and she will get to see Jesus. It's probably taking this long because they're up there putting extra time into preparing a special place for her in Heaven. It'll be wonderful, awesome, glorious, and I'm so, so excited for my baby.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Two weeks and one day ago, mommy was discharged from UCSF for the last time. Though we were initially instructed by our oncologist to go to the ER for CTs and MRIs to locate new cancer spots, the team of doctors at UCSF decided that there would be no use. They did not want to subject her to more tests knowing that no amount of radiation or chemo would halt the progression of the disease. Mommy was sent home with a prognosis of "weeks to months." We began in-home hospice immediately, which means that our house is full of hospital equiptment, hospice nurses come in almost everyday to check on her, and mommy is taking a large amount of sleep-inducing pain meds.

In the past two weeks and one day, our family has experienced so many emotions. My dad is already mourning, we feel hopeless, lost, and fearful of the impending loss of our mommy. But we've also experienced much joy, because my mommy is such a joy to be around. She seems to be at peace with the situation, and with all of her church friends visiting, the house and its inhabitants have been very busy and cheerful. Mommy is very carefree and child-like, and everyone is taking care of her now.

This past Thursday night was very special because our mommy tam was baptized. In front of friends and family, she declared her love for Jesus and her desire to be apart of God's family.

It was the most wonderful, most joyous celebration.

Unfortunately, her health has worsened in the past couple of days. The cancer moves fast and is taking more from her everyday. Two nights ago, she coughed up blood clots as big as her fist, and yesterday, we noticed that she has lost a lot of her neurological function and mental acuity. Now, she is constantly in a confused state, has trouble holding her head up, cannot make decisions, and is often agitated at us for not being able to help her out of her confusion and tiredness. This is the most difficult change, because we've lost such a significant part of her. She's always been the sharpest, most decisive person in the family with the best memory, but now she can barely remember the date or what she did an hour ago. Her eyes tell me that she's trapped in a body she has no control over, and she really wants to break free and be her old self again. We want to help her, but there's nothing we can do.

I'm afraid of the next minute, hour, day, because I don't want to see the lung cancer take more of her from us. Our family is now facing the most difficult part of this whole disease process. Please pray for our mommy and for the rest of our family.