1

(5 replies, posted in In Remembrance)

My Mom passed peacefully on Monday, October 21, 2013. I was with her, holding her hand as she took her last breath.

The last few weeks of her life were very hard, her liver shut down completely and she went into complete renal failure. She was septic and so very sick.

I am grateful that she is now at peace and that her pain is over. Praying I will one day be able to find peace as well.

Thank you all for your support and warmth when I first came to this board.
I pray for all of you

Warmly
Christine

2

(7 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Thank you ALL so very much!

Of course my mind wanders in so many different directions and I am scared, nervous, curious, etc etc.

Mom is remarkably calm and for that I am so grateful!

Your thoughts and prayers are so greatly appreciated!

C xxx

3

(7 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Hello friends

Mom is at this point done with chemo. The doctor says no more for now at least as it is becoming more problematic than helpful. Her blood work has been consistently out of whack with her white cells going lower and lower and the platelets on a steady decline as well. Doctor is worried that the adverse effects will become a major issue if she continues the chemo.

She had scans on Wednesday of this week and we will get those results on Thursday of this coming week. She's been doing pretty well over all so I feel confident the scans will be okay.

I will let you know what we find out if you could toss out a prayer or 2 I would really appreciate it  smile

Hugs to all

Christine xx

4

(2 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Thanks so much Pam
The doctor and I try to be gentle with her and get her to understand. He explained that the chemo has a cumulative and continues to be in her system and working against the cancer for a while even if she does not get her treatment due to the low counts.

I think she is onboard now with what the doctor wants to do. Hoping she is anyway.

Thank you so much for your words and kindness

Christine xx

5

(2 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Just a quick update on Mom
Things are going “OK”.  Mom’s blood counts are on a pretty steady decline, white and red as well as platelets.
Dr has told her twice now that she NEEDS to take a break from the chemo. It IS working, which is proven by the good scan results. I get that she is terrified to stop chemo as she fears that the cancer will take hold and progress. She just cannot or will not understand that the chemo is doing more damage now than it is good.
Dr has decreased the doses drastically and has told her that at the end of this cycle he will either  stop chemo or change it to something different. Her bone marrow is just so tired from the drugs.
Mom, as I have mentioned is very, very stubborn and really does not understand that this is big time serious with the blood counts dropping continually .

I just needed to “talk” to someone and I know you all understand this beast.
Thank you so much for listening. I know we will find a workable solution but I am just scared.

Hugs and Love
Christine  :)

Just a brief Hello and update!

Mom continues to do well and we are on the newly lowered doses of both gemzar and carbo and she is tolerating it wonderfully!!

The holidays were absolutely wonderful and Mom celebrated her birt hday on January 2nd!!!  I am so grateful she is doing so well and we had another birthday to celebrate!!!

Wishing you all a wonderful New Year!

Love
Christine xx

GREAT news on Moms visit with the Oncologist today. The big tumor is 2cm smaller again and the other tumors have all shrunk as well! Chemo resumes next week!

He is going to lower the dosages of the gemzar and carbo but feels that since she is tolerating the chemo so well and the results have been so good, that continuing this regimen is in her best interest.

Her other tumors have all shrunk as well and there are no new lesions anywhere!

He did not have the report from her surgery on Monday for the stents but I will ask when we go in on Wednesday for chemo and see if they have it then. I am curious to see which stent did not get replaced, but only having 2 of the 3 reinserted is good news for sure!

Warm Hugs to all

Christine

8

(6 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Mom just had surgery yesterday to replace her stents. She had 3 plastic stents but now only has 2 which are metal. Dr felt that metal would be better for her this time.

I am not sure if they were clogged or not as I was not able to be there but I should know more after we see her oncologist on Thursday.

Warmly
Christine x

9

(9 replies, posted in Good News / What's Working)

Good Morning my dear friends!

Thank you ALL for being here yesterday as I stressed and worried while Mom was having her procedure!

I just spoke with her this morning and she sounds FABULOUS!! You'd never even know she had surgery yesterday!

We are eagerly awaiting Thursday's appointment with her oncologist now. I will let you all know what he says as soon as I get back that afternoon!

In the meantime, and I know I keep saying this but THANK YOU all so much! I don't know how I would ever get through this without the guidance and love and support I find here!

Warm Hugs!

Christine xoxo

10

(9 replies, posted in Good News / What's Working)

I am in HAPPY TEARS here... Thank you Lainy and thank you everyone!!

HUGE HUGE HUGS!!

Christine

11

(9 replies, posted in Good News / What's Working)

Ok Lainy!! I need that big YIPPEE!!

Mom is on the way home. EVERYTHING went great. The 3 plastic stents are out and 2 metal ones are in. She did great and does not need to follow up with the surgeon. We will see the Onc on Thursday and he will have any and all info from today.

Mom told everyone she came into contact with that she needed and demanded copies of every single piece of paperwork so she could give it to me. I will have those later this evening.

PHEW!! I can breathe again!

I have to tell you.. I had 2 wishes for this Christmas.. 1) I wanted my son home from Afghanistan for the holidays. We have not had him here in 2 years so this year will be super!
and 2) I needed my Mom to be here with us.
I got everything I needed and wanted smile

HUGE hugs to all

Christine xoxo

12

(9 replies, posted in Good News / What's Working)

Thanks so much Gavin!

I just heard she should be out of surgery in the next 15-20 minutes so I should know more shortly!

SO NERVOUS! lol

Chris xx

13

(9 replies, posted in Good News / What's Working)

I am waiting for Mom to get back from surgery but so far the news I have been getting is GREAT!!!

Mom had scans last Monday and apparently the doctor doing her stent replacement has seen the latest scan and told her that the tumors have SHRUNK MORE!! Oh please, please let this be true!!

I am not with her today at the hospital as I have messed up my knee and am in a full length leg immobilizer and on crutches and pain meds, etc. It was just not possible for me to drive her and being on my leg all day was a definite bad idea so my doctor "grounded" me. She is with another family member so I know she is in good hands but I am going kind of nuts waiting to hear any news smile

I am waiting to hear whether the plastic stents will be replaced with new plastic ones of if he opted to go with metal.  When we met with this Dr in early November he said he did not want to use metal but today he said he may... Wishing so much I could have been there!!

Mom has an appointment with the oncologist on Thursday to review her scans and discuss the future for her treatments. I WILL be there! I am so out of the loop with her at this point. It will be great to get some GOOD news for Christmas!

I will let you know as soon as I hear anything more!!

Hugs to all and thank you so much for being here and for caring

Christine oxoxox

14

(6 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Thanks so much Pam. I will be more than happy to be nervous with you!!

Spoke to Mom this morning and she had the second neupogen shot. Hoping that gives her the much needed boost and things can resume.




Hugs and Love
Chris smile

15

(6 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Thanks so much Lainy!

Yes December is getting booked up but as long as all of the appts go well and the news is good, it's fine!

I will absolutely tell Jared Thank You from you!! Such a huge weight off my mind having him back home for good!


Fortunately most of my Christmas shopping is done and I just need to get some smaller things to finish up. At least I don't have that to deal with, YAY ME! lol

~Chris smile

16

(6 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Hello dear friends
It's been a while since I have updated you on Mom. Last time I did we were in a tough spot with her as she was in a nasty mood and the urologist appointment was pretty unpleasant.

I have not been able to go to the last 2 chemo appts with her, one due to my son's return from Afghanistan this past week and today because I have picked up a cold/flu which has been really knocking me down. I know I could not possibly take her to chemo with this, but she was only to get Gemzar and be done in about an hour. Well she called me and said she was not able to have chemo today due to her white blood cell count being so low.  Now I am even happier I did not take her, knowing she would have been so susceptible to picking up this cold.

I do have more news... Mom is scheduled to have her 3 stents changed on December 10. We also have scans scheduled for December 5. So it will be a busy month by the sounds of things.

I also learned that her oncologist is now talking about continuing the chemo past December. I'm not sure if I mentioned that he had said he would be stopping it in December and we would take a wait and watch approach. I was not at that appointment with Mom so I was not able to ask him why he changed his mind but I will be seeing him on the 13th of December so I can talk to him then about all of it. I am wondering and a little worried that perhaps her tumor markers have changed. I asked her if he mentioned that but she was not sure. So many questions I need to ask now lol

I hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving, (those who celebrate it)!

Hugs
Christine smile

17

(7 replies, posted in General Discussion)

LOL that pretty much sums it up!! A whip and chair may have come in handy as long as she did not get a hold of them!  (warped sense of humor, sorry smile

I wondered about asking for something to ease her nerves ( or maybe mine) but that's her other bone of contention; MEDICATIONS. She thinks she is on too many but in fact, she takes one pill for her diabetes and one for the edema. Along with her vitamins etc. But she has never, ever been sick in her life and now it seems that there is something new at every turn.

I just felt so bad for this new doctor and his staff~ Yikes, what a way to start a Monday!!

18

(7 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Thank you so much Pam. I am debating on calling my doctor for a referral to someone. This is so hard. I am trying to be supportive but WOW. Days like today are so difficult to handle.

Mom has ALWAYS been like this, even before the cancer so it's not really new to me. I think she is bipolar or manic or something but I have tried in the past to get her to see someone and almost got my head handed to me. Literally lol

I feel better just having been able to "talk" about today. I know that she will calm down and be alright in a day or so. Hopefully before chemo on Wednesday smile

Thanks so much for reading/listening. Hey at least it was good news from the doctor and that is what matters most~

Love and hugs Back!
Christine

19

(7 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Well, I am filled with good news and yet still very upset.

A bit of background.. My Mom is not always the most pleasant person to be around. Our relationship has been strained in the past but the cancer has seemingly brought us closer together.  Mom can be a challenge to even be around on some days, nasty, negative and just not a nice person. This is how she has always been but today brought that to a whole new level.

We got to the appt and of course there were papers to be filled out. She was FURIOUS that they asked her to do that. I offered to do it but she get angry at me for asking and said NO. I opted to sit quietly and let her deal with things. You can probably imagine the reaction when they asked her for a urine sample... She snapped that poor nurse's head off and ripped the cup out of her hand and stomped off to the restroom. I was so shocked that I couldn't even speak.

So we go to the exam room and the nurse who was absolutely a dream!! So sweet and nice, begins to ask the normal questions. She asked what brought us in today. YIKES. Mom snaps at her and says Who the Hell even knows!  At this point a lightning bolt to my head would have been most welcomed.

We got through the preliminary questions, blood pressure, pulse etc which were perfect, and the nurse told us Dr would be in very shortly. Mom says He Better Be!! I am NOT wasting my time and money here all day!

No lightning bolt but the Dr did come in pretty quickly! (THANKFULLY)  He starts asking the normal questions and Mom was so rude and nasty be decided to talk to me.  (Can't blame him for that.) Anyway, he asked me what the oncologist was looking for as far as this visit. I explained that the right kidney has a tumor on it's pole and the left is inflamed and we just want to make sure there is nothing more underlying. He pulled up the CT scan images and sits between Mom and myself and goes over everything very thoroughly with us both. He thinks that the "tumor" on the right kidney may be a cyst (EXCELLENT NEWS) and that the left kidney's inflammation may be "normal" for Mom as it looks as if it MAY be a type of birth defect. ALL of this is such great news!  I figure this would make Mom happy but nope. It got worse from here. The poor doctor mentioned MAYBE doing another scan using nuclear contrast and Mom hit the roof! She never even heard him out, just yelled NO. NO MORE CONTRAST. NO. (background here, the barium contrast really, really exacerbated her bowel issues and she had several very embarrassing episodes during the last scan. I was so heartbroken to hear her crying from embarrassment. So I promised her never again would I allow ANY doctor to use barium again)

ANYWAY, I told her to please stop it that this test was completely different and there would be no barium, it is an IV drip. She still would not have any part of that.

We finally got to the point that this appointment was useless. The doctor was not even addressing her, or trying to as she was just being so stubborn. He asked me what I thought. I looked at Mom and I was honest with him. Mom has been through so much already, seen so many doctors and had so many tests, along with weekly chemo and blood work. I thought it would be best, as long as he agreed, to wait until her next set of scans, which are in early December, then compare all 3 sets and see if there is any changes. If not, then I am pretty sure she will tell him she will  not do anything further.

I must add, all of the kidney function tests have been normal. The whole reason behind this appt was to address the inflammation, and err on the side of caution as there is some kidney disease/cancer in her family.

SO, there is a follow up appointment made for January 10. Whether we go or not remains to be seen.

She was STILL absolutely furious and miserable and nasty when I got her home. I KNOW she is frustrated and so tired of doctors and medicines and chemo. I just don't know how to ease her temper on days like this.

I know this is long and probably sounds terrifyingly whiny. I am sorry, I just needed to get this off my chest and hope that maybe someone here has had a similar experience.


Thank you so much for listening.

Christine sad

20

(12 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Thanks so much Gavin.. I am back from Mom's appt, will post a new topic on that

Christine smile

21

(12 replies, posted in General Discussion)

AMEN to all of that Lainy! xoxo

22

(12 replies, posted in General Discussion)

You guys are the best! Thanks so much for all of your replies!!

Have I mentioned how much it meant to me to find this board? I felt absolutely isolated before this. NOBODY had ever heard of CC when Mom was diagnosed and my expertise is in the lung cancer arena so I had a lot of late nights researching and hoping to find answers and support. Then I found you!!!
THANK YOU!! From the bottom of my heart!

Christine

23

(12 replies, posted in General Discussion)

LOL thanks so much Lainy!!! I really appreciate the support!

I am hoping that the urologist agrees with the inflammation and we can take care of that simply and without surgery of any kind. She is terrified they will want to cut her. I can't really blame her there.

I will definitely keep you posted on Monday's adventure!

Hugs
Chris smile

24

(12 replies, posted in General Discussion)

Mom had chemo last Wednesday and saw the doctor too! He continues to be very pleased, bordering on amazed at how well she is responding to the chemo. Her tumor markers continue to drop and her liver functions, which had been non existent in the beginning are all normal! Not bad for a lady who was orange in June. Pumpkin orange at that!

Monday we are seeing the urologist to have the kidneys checked out. As I think I mentioned the tumor on her kidney was the only one not to shrink too much and the other kidney has a lot of inflammation. The oncologist wants to get a second opinion as there is kidney disease and kidney cancer in her family. Hoping we get good news here!

Other than that we survived the storm here with very little issue. I lost power here for 36 hours, Mom was out for 12 but neither of us sustained any property damage. I consider us truly lucky. My heart goes out to those who have lost so much from this storm. I hope everyone here fared ok!

Warm hugs
Christine

On behalf of my Mom and myself, thank you so much for what you are doing Percy.

Until Mom's diagnosis I had never even heard of this disease. I began to research and was so disheartened on the lack of information and resources out there

I am so glad I found this board and all of you awesome people!

Warmly
Christine