Because many of you who read this blog know me personally, you know that we’ve been going through some tough stuff lately. I decided to write about this because I have to share a really neat story about my mom’s friends.
3 1/2 years ago, my mom was diagnosed with cancer. She has a very rare tumor that started in her chest, called a thymic carcinoid tumor, which is a type of neuroendocrine cancer. When she was diagnosed, we were told that she is one of about 150 cases in the world. So there is virtually no information on this. She’s been through surgeries, radiation, tons of chemo and for a while, when the cancer was dormant, just a monthly shot of octreotide. Last year, the cancer grew larger in her chest and also metastasized to her liver, and through a special kind of chemo, the liver tumors were gone. They were back by August of 2007, and Mom decided to go ahead with another kind of chemo. This one is 3 days of treatment, and then 2 1/2 weeks off, and she’s been doing this for 5 months. We just found out last week that the tumors have again metastasized, this time to her stomach, lung, and spine. She has bravely decided to try another kind of chemo.
Through all of this, we have had the most amazing support of family and friends. My parents live in the same small town that my mom grew up in, and therefore, she has many close friends that she’s known since elementary school. Many of these women play Bunco together once a month, and last night was the first time since the most recent bad news. She sent an email to all of them before the get together so there wouldn’t be that awkward “what should we say” moment with everyone. So when she got there, all of the women were holding umbrellas, to “shower her with love.” They had made a calendar and filled in dates that they’d all bring dinner to her and my dad. And at the end of the evening, the bunco winnings were given to her instead of divided like they usually are, “in case someone forgot to bring dinner” and they had to pick something up. Or so they said. When Mom got home, there was a lot more money in the envelope…the girls just wanted to be able to do something to help, and since the insurance that my mom has to be on is so expensive, they thought this was one way that they could pitch in. I just think that’s so incredible. We are so blessed to have these amazing people helping us through all of this. It makes it easier for me to know they’re there, taking care of her, when I live 2 hours away.
So, to those of you reading this, just pray…thank God for the people in your life who help you through rough times, and for the family and friends helping us through ours; pray for healing for my mom, and wisdom to make the impossible decisions that have to be made, and peace when a decision has been made. And truly, truly, be thankful for your health.
This story is continued throughout the rest of my mom’s life. If you’d like to read the rest, here are the links.
Update on My Mom
Helping a Grieving Family
4 Months Later
You Won’t Find Me Here Today