Saturday, February 22, 2014
Some Things Are Hard To Talk About
I haven't had it, knock wood. My Mother passed away after a very long and arduous time with breast cancer, years of battling it. One of the major lessons I took from her was that when you've reached the point where you're done taking the poisons and the radiation, hospice care is a direct gift from God and hospice workers are angels. My brother and I could not have managed her care for the last few months as beautifully as the hospice did. They took care of us too, indirectly. My Mother had a few final months of feeling really good after her informed decision not to continue chemo, using the palliative medications for pain and symptoms, versus the harsh chemotherapy. She accomplished some things she wanted to do, and then left us peacefully, which was a blessing for her and for us, made the grief a bit more bearable knowing she had felt in control of her death.
The other thing I learned from her was a bit more sad, which is if you find a lump (or any other classic sign of cancer or just something that you know isn't "right" within your body, don't ignore it for months. Because she did. And I can't deal with that thought even now. Here's a good list for women from WebMD and a more general list from the American Cancer Society.
On the positive side, medicine and treatments are always evolving. Two co-workers lost their wives to breast cancer in the years before tamoxifen. One even flew his dying wife to the site of an early tamoxifen trial, begging for her to be admitted to the study, but she was far too ill. A few years later, my mother's life was extended for several years by the now-commonly prescribed tamoxifen, which delayed the re-occurrence of her cancer. So hopeful things do happen.
Best wishes to you and your loved ones...
Posted by Veronica Scott
Labels: Veronica Scott
Best Selling Science Fiction & Paranormal Romance author and “SciFi Encounters” columnist for the USA Today Happily Ever After blog, Veronica Scott grew up in a house with a library as its heart. Dad loved science fiction, Mom loved ancient history and Veronica thought there needed to be more romance in everything.