Topic: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hi Everyone,

I wonder if anyone here can relate to something that happened to my dad today. A little background first. When I was young, very young in fact, from the age of about 8 onwards, I was friends with someone who lived across the street from us. We were what you would class as best friends, did lots of stuff together, spend loads of time together and got up to lots of mischief together! We went to the same schools as each other and I guess we grew up with one another. I would go on trips with my friend and his parents and he would come on trips with me and my parents. My dad and his dad also got on really well and the 4 of us would all go to the football together pretty much every week as we all supported the same team, Dundee!!! I guess what I'm trying to say is that not only did I and my mate get on well, but both sets of parents did also.

Well, as we both got older, we moved on to other things as people do. They moved house and out of the area so we drifted apart, we didn't fall out or anything, but we just both moved on. I'm still in touch with my mate every so often by email, we have a similar interest. He is an economics lecturer and I have a great interest in the markets. We bump into each other here every few months and catch up with what we are both up to. My dad and his dad also bump into each other every so often, and when they do, they both spend ages talking to each other. The last time I saw my friend was about a month ago and I told him about my dad and his CC and how it is inoperable. We talked for ages and I know that he will have told his dad about my dads CC.

Anyway, my dad bumped into my friends dad today. This was the first time dad had seem him since he got sick. Instead of them spending time talking and catching up with each other as normal, my friends dad just sort of said hello and walked on. Now this is not  what usually happens when they see each other. My friends dad is not rude, impolite or anything like that and we have all known each other for 30 years or so. Well dad came home and was feeling a bit upset about this. I guess he was felling a bit ignored from someone he has known for years. I think that perhaps some people don't know how to react to others when they know they have cancer and how to approach them? Has anyone else had this sort of experience where others don't know how to talk to them or indeed, maybe even avoid them?

Dad has not had the best of weeks and this sort of just ends a bad week, his first one in a while. He has had quite a few bouts of shaking this week, something he has not had for quite a long time. I dont know if this is down to the shaking coming back or not, but since it has not happened for a while, I sort of get the impression that he was thinking that he was getting better, then the shaking comes back and reminds him that he still has CC? He also says that he is not looking forward to his CT scan appt on the 23rd Dec and that he "feels like an old man." He doesn't seem to be as positive as he was a while ago, but hopefully this was just a bad week.

The best to us all.

Cheers

Gavin

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hi Gavin
many years ago a friends daughter ( aged 14 ) had a rare cancer, her fight only lasted 12 months, but they both experienced similar to your father, The daughter was in a wheel chair at the end, her mother would take her out shopping or to the doctors etc and her friends and family friends would ignore her, very sad, I hope nothing bad ever happens to those people or they might get the guilts, when it happens to them.
Stay positive!!

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hello Gavin

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hi Gavin,
Your story rang a bell for me as well.  My father's old business partner lives two doors down from my parents, and although his partner sold out 15 years ago and retired(he is 82), they still maintain that they are best friends, and stop to see eachother everyday, have a glass of wine, talk about the early days of business and the "old country", as Andy is from Italy as well.  Well, when he found out my dad had cancer, and it was  rather rare cancer, he did the same as your fathers friend.   He stopped visiting, and when my dad went to his house, he didn't talk much, couldn't look at my dad.  So my mom  had talked to Andy's wife about the situation, and she said Andy felt so guilty.  He had made it to 82, he had been a smoker for years, and yet it was my dad who was sick.  So maybe it was some kind of "survivors guilt"?.  or maybe some people feel guilty, that they are "relieved" it is not them?  Or cancer scares them b/c they have heard such tragic cases.   I love the phrase "cancer is only a word, not a sentence".  people need to understand that.  In my dads friends case, my mother stressed to his wife how important my dads friendship is to her husband, and how he needed to feel normal and talk about normal things.....so his friend came around again, and they are now back to normal, but it took some time.  Infact I bumped in to him yesterday on the street, and he knows we go in Monday for my dad result from all the lung tests, and he said, "I  am praying for your father that it is nothing but scar tissue, he as to be o.k." he was all teary eyed.  Made me teary eyed.  Gavin, if you see your friend again or his dad, by all means, let them know your father Needs his old friend to be the exact same as before, let him know, that is what he can do for him.

The  Lord is my shephard

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Gavin,

I can only add to what the others have said. In my situation, my husband passed away 3 months ago after only having be ill for about 2 months previous. I have experienced the same type of issues as this with some people.  I have a very close friend, a similar situation to what you described. Her husband had a heart attack & has a lot of health issues. When Jim passed away, she was very sympathtic and mentioned that she always thought her husband would pass on & leave her alone before the rest of us.  Now, I hear from her every now & then, but she does not really like to talk about Jim or my situation and how my life has changed. When I bring it up the answers are short & she changes the subject. I think it is hard for her to deal with as she is afraid it could have been or may still some day be her in my situation, so therefore it is hard for her to talk about it. At first I was very hurt by this, but after reading all of these posts I am beginning to understand.

Jim was only 62 & I also get this feeling from people that are a lot older or sicker than he was. They wonder why Jim was taken so young & so swiftly while they are still here. I have actually had some people say that to me. Many of them also seem to stay away or when I do see them do not want to talk about my situation. On another post someone said it is like the white elephant in the room that no one wants to acknowledge is there.  If you don't see it or talk about it maybe it isn't so.

It is so sad that many of the people that we need to be here for us the most seem not to be able understand.  They don't realize that this is something that has or is happening to us & that we do need to talk about it & to remember.  Not bringing it up will not change anything or make it go away.

I think it is true that many do not understand until it happens to them. I know I see a lot of things differently now than I did a few short months ago.

I am hoping for the best for your Dad & you. Take care.

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Gavin,

My mom's friends were a great support to us when she was sick and when she died but I could see in their faces that even though they have all lost people close to them, including their parents, my mother's death has affected them differently, for the first time they are considering their own lives and wondering how death will come to them and when. Perhaps your father's friend cannot face this thought.

My mom was only 66 and some of my friends seem uncomfortable talking about it, I think because they are not ready to confront their own parents' mortality.

I also think that how illness and death are dealt with when you are growing up is important. I am half Irish and have been to many wakes, even as a child, and was surprised when an adult friend asked me for advice on what to expect and what to do at a wake because she had never attended one. The same is true for illness, in some families it is something kept hidden.

Patty

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hi everyone,

Thanks to you all for sharing your experiences and stories. It would seem from reading them that what happened to my dad was not so unusual. Thinking about it, I can see how it must be hard for some people to deal with illnesses such as this and how to talk to those suffering in this way.

Hi Rhonda,

Such a very sad story you tell. It's hard enough for people to deal with this illness as an adult, but it must be so incredibly hard to deal with as a 14 year old. My dad is 64 and was a bit upset at this as he felt he had been blanked a bit, so I can not imagine what a 14 year old child felt in a similar situation. So sad. Marion makes a good point that if people dont know what to say or dont want to say the wrong thing then they simply just say nothing. I guess if some adults deal with it this way then children will do as well.

I am staying positive and hope that you are doing so as well!

Hi Marion,

Good to hear from you too. I can understand what you say when you talk about people not wanting to say the "wrong thing" so saying nothing. This is something that I think I will talk to my dad about and will tell him about you and everyone else's thoughts and experiences on this issue.

Dad had a better weekend than he did the week. No shakes, slept okayish and his mood seems to be better. I really think the shakes when they hit him really remind him about his CC, and this then drags his mood down. It was St Andrews day this weekend so I made dad and I Haggis, tatties and neeps! Mum hates this but you cant not have haggis on St Andrews day! So I made her something else.

Mum has not been to the gym or shops as it is so cold and icy right now and the cold air makes it hard for her to breath outside. However, if it comes to it soon then I will be carrying her into the gym and putting her on the treadmill! Dad has got round the problem of icy weather by just going out later in the day when it is not so cold which makes sense to me. He gets up at 6.30 in the morning to take one of his tablets, he cant have any milk for 2 hours once he takes this tablet so he used to take this the go to the shop for papers etc. Now he takes this tablet, then goes back to bed for a few hours then gets up for breakfast later on! I dont like him going out so early anyway when it is cold as he really does not have to, but he was a bit stuck in his ways!

Hi Barbara,

"cancer is only a word, not a sentence". Wow, such a meaningful phrase and so relevant to the experiences you and others here have shared and talked about. That is a lot that your dad and his friend have shared, friendship, living near to one another and being in business with each other. And both still being friends now and both coming from the "old country". Plenty to talk about and share over the glasses of wine!

I guess your dad must have been quite upset and confused when his friend seemed a bit distant after he learned of his CC?  Especially as the 2 of them went back a long way together. It's good that your mum and his wife talked about this situation and now your dad and his friend are back to normal as you say, even if it did take quite a while. The next time I see my friend or his dad I will mention this. i was going to email him, but I'd rather wait until I bump into one of them again.

Am keeping my fingers crossed for you and your dad on Monday for his lung test results.

Hi Darla,

Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and your situation with me and I am sorry to hear that you have gone through a similar situation as my dad. That must be hard when you want someone close to you to talk to about your life and how it has changed, yet that friend does not seem to want to discuss it. I guess there are no easy answers here for us and that everyone seems to react to certain situations in different ways. You said at first that you were very hurt by this but after reading these posts maybe you were begining to understand. Well I guess that maybe some good can come out of these posts for all of us perhaps?

My dad does not really like to talk a lot about his CC, but if I push him on something then he will talk, but not a lot. Mum and I talk a lot about this, she is not one to hide away from it and hope it dissappears, but dad seems to be the opposite.

"I think it is true that many do not understand until it happens to them. I know I see a lot of things differently now than I did a few short months ago." I agree completely with all of that so much.

Thank you so much once again Darla for sharing your situation with me.

Hi Patty,

Thank you so much for your post and for sharing your experiences. My dad has 2 friends that he grew up with, played in a band in the 60's and no doubt got up to all manner of mischief with at the time! Actually there were 4 in the band but one of them moved away many years ago. The 3 of them that are left here have all been friends for so long and still are today. They have been a great source of support and visited dad many times in the hospital and when he came home, just as your mum's friends supported her.

When the 3 of them get together, they talk about all sorts of stuff, both good and the not so good, but dad is not as open as they are. But when they ask him something about his CC, he talks to them about it, but only if they ask. My dads other friend I mentioned in my first post,  well I guess you are right about him not being able to face this situation. Hopefully the next time they see each other this will not be the case.

Thank you all once again.

Hugs and the very best to everyone.

Gavin

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Gavin,
Thanks for reminding me about St. Andrews Day. I loved it when I lived in Scotland. You are right, you need neeps, tatties and haggis (plus a little whiskey). I am sure it was just the thing to cheer your dad up.

And dont I know about the icy, cold winters. Hans has threatened me with special shoes older people have to walk on ice because I turn into a little bambi the moment it gets slick.

Has your dad had any scans to see if the treatment is working? I am very interested in his treatment.

Kris

Cancer is a word, not a sentence.

36 year old patient with buckets of hope

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Alright, for those of us who don't know anything about the customs in Scotland...what are neeps, tatties and haggies?  Great sounding words. (The Whiskey I get)
Ron, would love to hear your explaination, also.
Hugs
Marion

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Neeps=turnips, usually mashed
Tatties=mashed potato
Haggis= sheep's 'pluck' (heart, liver and lungs), minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices, and salt, mixed with stock, and traditionally boiled in the animal's stomach for approximately three hours (from wiki). It sounds gross, but it can be nice and spicy and quite yummy.

St. Andrews is a great night. Loads of men in kilts, good food and good friends. Firewords as well sometimes. People flying Scottish flags and just great national pride. I loved it. As a foreign exchange student, I got invited out to several celebrations (and Burns night as well) that were fantastic. Just thinking about it makes me miss Glasgow and Scotland. Its the kind of place that really grabs your heart and doesnt let go.

Kris

Cancer is a word, not a sentence.

36 year old patient with buckets of hope

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hi Kris,

Sounds like you had some good times in Scotland on St Andrews night! All the foreign exchange students I've known who come to Scotland all seem to love the night just as much as you seem to have had. The haggis, tatties and neeps sure went down a treat, delicious!!! Although dad cant have a wee dram with it, but Irn-Bru is a good substitute! And yes dad loved it! And a great description of the meal you gave to Marion! The haggis used to be cooked in a sheeps stomach, but now it is more common to use an artificial casing. Wrap in tinfoil, simmer in water for 50 mins, slice the casing open and then let the aroma waft out!!! Lovely! Not long until Burns night and the next haggis supper!

Dad has his scan at Ninewells in Dundee on the 23rd of this month to see how the treatment has went so far, so obviously we are just sitting here waiting and keeping our fingers crossed. If there is anything at all that you want to know about my dads treatment, experiences etc then please just ask as I am more than happy to answer any questions. Email me direct if you do not want to ask here.

All the best.

Gavin

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Sounds like pure fun, not sure about the haggis but I'd go just for the men in kilts!

Patty

13 (edited by marions Tue, 02 Dec 2008 15:33:33)

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Thanks for the explanations.  Just wondering it must be a custom from way back and have some sort of meaning.  I would love to know that, also.

Patty:   I was expecting a link posted by you in re: to men in kilts.  Still laughing at your comment

And, I almost forgot...possibly, we can use the "Cafe" to further discuss this special day in Scotland

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Ok Marion

Go to the Cafe and all of your requests have been answered.

Enjoy

Ron

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Hi all,

Just a quick update. My dad was out this morning at the local shops and bumped into his friends wife. Well they spent quite a while talking and she was not at all hesitant in talking to my dad about his CC and everything. They didn't talk about why dad's friend didn't talk to him the other week, but hopefully the next time they see each other they will be able to talk to one another and catch up etc. I'm sure she will go home and mention to her husband that she saw my dad. I know it made dad feel good to see someone he has known for years and to be able to talk as they had done for all these years. A good day.

Just thought I'd let you all know.

Cheers

Gavin

Any advice or comments I give are based on personal experiences and knowledge and are my opinions only, they are not to be substituted for professional medical advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified doctor or medical professional.

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

Gavin....indeed, it was a good day.  Thanks for sharing.
Cheers to you to

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

Re: Dad's mood seems to be getting a bit worse.

One thing is for sure you will suffer from those who cant handle "the bic C" just as much as you will benefit from love and kindness from the most unexpected quarters.