25.4.07

Some Improvement (of sorts)

Dad is using a walker now. He is okay with that. He can get about the house better. Mom told me that Dad said, after he fell the other night and couldn't get up, "I never thought I'd end up this way..."
Small victories are the epitome of cancer.
After the initial diagnosis the first came when they said Grade III instead of IV, then there was no spread, then he wasn't terribly sick from chemo just a little and then...on and on and on it goes.
For every down side there was a small victory, albeit tiny, squinting hard to find it victory...because without those little bitty scraps...you have nothing to hope for...

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23.4.07

No True Words Can Tell You How I Feel

I've become the child of someone dying with cancer.
No longer a nurse.
No longer someone who knows someone who "has cancer".
Suddenly, to the very marrow of my bones I, well, ache...for lack of a better word.
This is a feeling you can't really describe easily.
This is a sinking, nervous despair feeling that only anyone who has a parent or close family member dying of cancer would recognize.
Dad is shrinking by the hour it seems. Cheeks sunken in. Verbalization at a minimum. Pain seems to be under good control. He is walking with a cane now. Output is poor. His eyes look resigned to the fate at hand. I guess that's what I noticed yesterday. What often triggers my tears.
This is so very very hard.

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15.4.07

Not Good News

The PET scan showed several ribs with "activity" and several "new areas" and oddly no sign of the primary tumor. Several nodes with "metabolic activity" and lost of pleural activity now.
Not good.
Although I hate PET scans because they practically show a freckle I have a tendency to believe this one as Dad's condition has suddenly escalated and he is extremely frail, in pain and unable to eat much. We may be looking at hospitalization soon. We will talk with the oncologist on Monday.
I actually talked to the oncologist on Friday, and saw the report of the scan late Friday but I wanted to wait until MOnday to talk with Mom about it. Spare the weekend for her. Well...she found the report anyway.
I hope we can keep the pain at bay.
Dad looks so thin...can't weigh 130 now. The weight is just dropping off.
Cancer loves calories.
shit

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13.4.07

Got Though The Scan

Dad got through the PET okay. He didn't use O2, but we packed it just in case. He then had zymeta. He is SOOOOO thin. Mom and I went to Walmart and picked up SMALL sweat pants for him. I bet he doesn't even weigh 130. We don't even weigh him at home anymore. We don't want to know. I imagine he will get weighed next Thursday. We will find out then what the PET shows. Dad's calcium level was 12.4...the highest it's ever been. NO wonder he has been so lethargic this last week. If the cancer is in the bone I dont' know what we will do. But if not...he has GOT to have that surgery. When we got home dad was hurting and he took pain meds and ate only a little bit. Later, I was surprised to hear that he drove over to our house (though he stayed in the car) and dropped off some curtains that mom had been working on for me. He couldn't even get off the couch for 5 days, has Zymeta and ta daaa he feels a bit better. I don't think it will last many days but he will have to take advantage of his normal calcium level while he can.

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12.4.07

Kearney Tomorrow...early.

Going to Kearney for Dads PET scan. The last Oncologist appointment she said we need to find out if Dad's cancer has spread to the bones or if the hyperparathyroidism is causing the hypercalcemia. If there is no mets to the bones than she would feel comfortable reccomending the surgery to remove the glands. If the cancer has spread, of course, than this is the reason for the hypercalcemia.
Dad looks bad. Really bad. No edema whatsoever. He is shrinking, eyes wide and not talkative at all. He barely moves off the couch. You can tell that the zymeta helps the calcium stay in the norm for about 5 days and then...you can see Dad "melting", for lack of better word. Just 2 weeks ago...Dad mowed the lawn! On his rider of course...but...still...he hadn't done that for about 2 seasons. Now...he can't even face taking a shower. He is on O2. He is barely eating. He probably weighs less than 140 at this point. The PET scan will take over an hour and then we have to go to the Oncologist for the Zymeta. He will be totally exhausted I'm sure. I hope we can get him there without problems.

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