Tuesday, May 8, 2012
A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words - Or Something
When you get down to it, every day life is kind of boring. You get up, you shower, you get dressed, you go about your day with your to do list. My to do list is generally not very long because of the fibro, but it always has one or two things on it.
But what I have realized in the last few months is that every day boring life? That's your life. And how many people can say they are really living their lives? How many are in the present moment? How many are telling the people they love how important they are and hugging their kids and stopping to smell the roses?
My life has recently been going through a series of decisions - what will I do with my blog, what do I want to focus my time on, what needlework projects do I want to work on. I need to pick up a prescription and get the new dog a pretty collar with some bling, because she's a girl and all girls need a little bling. I need a bubble wrap envelope so I can ship off my quilt square. I need to take Jamie to get his learners permit. I need to send my mom something for Mother's Day.
And while all of this mundane stuff is going on in my life, something much more life shattering is going on in the life of the best friend I have ever had.
As most of you know, Kaiser told her there was nothing more they could do for her metastasized cancer back in January. She found a holistic clinic that takes care of her as a person, not a number, and she and her husband proceeded to fund raise. Things were going okay. She looked healthy. She felt good.
And then things fell apart. In the last two weeks, it was determined that she has pleurisy in one lung and that the tumors in her lungs were not going away. And then the blood work came back and the cancer has spread to the tissue around the lungs.
A PET scan was scheduled. She had that on Friday. The pain was getting so bad that she couldn't breathe. Isn't it amazing how much we take breathing for granted?
Yesterday, I had the pleasure of spending the day taking Malea for bloodwork, for her IV treatment at the center, and to the pulmonologist, where they pulled 500 cc's of fluid out of her left lung and assured her that the pain would be gone within a couple of hours.
Instead, the pain has been getting worse. She can't find a comfortable position. She can't lie down or sit up. Her pain management is almost zero - I don't know why. She can't cough or sneeze or laugh because the pain is excruciating.
A call to her pulmonologist determined that she shouldn't still be in pain and that since she is in so much pain, it is most likely coming from the tumors that are clustered along her sternum and in her lungs. A CT scan has been scheduled for tomorrow and the PET scan results are in, but the report hasn't been written yet. The doctor told her today on the phone that there were "new findings" on the PET scan, but that she wasn't able to tell her what they were until the report came back.
None of this is good news. Malea is of course really scared and I am beyond scared for her. Right now, it is raining hard and it feels to me like the earth is crying with me because I am so anxious for her.
If anyone can beat cancer, it is my friend. But she is going through all of the what if scenarios in her mind right now and fighting back the fear that she won't be here for the birth of her first granddaughter in August. We are staying positive and believing that things will turn around.
But for now, my plans are on hold because I can't focus on them. I find myself staring off into the distance, sometimes with tears on my cheeks. Sometimes I find myself sobbing and Justin has to come and hold me until I can catch my breath. Sometimes I find a cat and lie down and just listen to him purr.
We had plans to go to the beach this week. We were going to have a girls' trip, just the two of us, to feel the healing of the ocean. Then we thought we could make plans once the fluid was drained, but she's in more pain now than before they did the procedure.
I want to give her a couple of really good, stress free, obligation free, cancer free days to just be herself and relax and enjoy the ocean or the lake or the mountains. It's the one thing I really, really want to do. I am praying that a miracle will appear and very, very soon.
Right now, I hate cancer with the passion of a thousand burning suns. It doesn't care who it picks on. It doesn't care that it ruins plans and causes horrific pain and suffering and it doesn't discriminate. It takes children. What kind of world are we living in when children die of cancer? Who is to answer for this?
Why is there no cure for this insidious disease? And why does it seem to be slithering its way into my life by striking the people I love the most?
The next time you are stuck in traffic, or in line at the grocery store, or your kid is driving you crazy, think about how lucky you are just to be able to breathe. I know I will.