Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Personal Ramble


I need to ramble for a minute.  

I have mentioned over the past couple of years that my mother is a mess.  She has Parkinson's, and dementia.  A couple of years ago she fell and broke her leg, and was unable to relearn how to walk. The dementia made physical therapy impossible; therapy hurt and she couldn't understand why people were trying to hurt her. She is unable to transfer.  She lives in her own little world, increasingly unable to communicate. Beyond that she is comfortable and happy most of the time.  My sister and brother in law moved in and provide 24-hour a day in home care for my parents.  Bless them!  

My father had been sort of the rock, though he has grown increasingly frail over the past couple of years.  A couple of months ago he caught a cold, when the cough didn't go away after a couple of weeks, my sister forced him to see a doctor, two weeks later and still coughing they took him back and the doctor took X-rays.  The X-rays had some shadows and were sent off to a specialist and more tests. The diagnoses is a developing aortic aneurysm.  The only "treatment" is surgery and the surgery is brutal.  He declined.  The cough was worse last last week and my sister took him to the emergency room, they did a CT scan, and found a mass in his right lung.  He was referred to another specialist, who yesterday delivered a diagnosis of late stage lung cancer.  The doctor reviewed the diagnostic and treatment options and said, if I were you, I'd say no to all of it.  The best we can hope for with aggressive treatment is to ad a month or two to your life expectancy, and those would not be quality months.  My father says, no invasive diagnostics, no surgery, no chemo, no radiation. They are going to do another scan to get a better look and treat for quality of life.  It is going to be a challenging 6 to 12 months.  

My parents are 88, they have been married 67 years this month.  

Sorry, I needed to ramble.  

6 comments:

  1. I am so sorry to hear about your parents. I shall remember them in my evening prayers. I only wish you the best.

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  2. oh honey, I am so sorry to hear this news. :(
    {{{{{hugs}}}}} to you and your family.

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  3. David,
    I know it is a cliche, but I am sorry to hear this. My own parents went through a similar scenario before they died. My Mother had dementia and my father was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. Same thing, the doctors told us that if he had radical "colbat" (spelling?) radiation they could buy "a couple weeks." And and we (his family) declined. Just before we were to take him from the hospital to a nursing home, he died. Just now I'm reading a book "Knocking on Heaven's Door - The Path to a Better Way of Death" by Katy Butler. Same scenario, aging parents dying and how to care for them at the end. Bill and I are old now. Bill's 87 and I'm 74. I often wonder who will care for us when our turn comes. In the meantime, I try to make every day count. Today the sun is out and the daffodils are blooming. I will go out now and cherish yet another day of (relative) good health. My thoughts are with you David at this difficult time of your life.
    Ron

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  4. At least your parents have you andyour sister et al
    A tough way ahead, for sure, but you all are there, they are not alone

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  5. Hang in there and ramble all you want. Hug.

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  6. It was a very good ramble indeed. thank you for sharing it.

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