View Full Version : kellibelli
08-24-1999, 06:59 PM
kellibelli, it has been a while since I've read anything and I was just wondering how is your mom doing? I remeber your post about her and I was just hoping she's still O.K.
Bad spellers of the world... UNTIE
08-25-1999, 09:14 AM
how kind of you to ask!
She is really doing great...the chemo makes her tired, but otherwise, no side effects.
We talk about it (cancer-the terminal status etc) and she is dealing with the reality of her in=mpending death, but she is refusing to give up, she is reading everthing she can get her hands on about nutrition, positive thinking, anything that will help.
She begins radiation treatment this fall, after the chemo, and she is nervous, but upbeat at the same time, she realizes that if it were totally hopeless, they would not be so agressive.
we have talked about telling my older son (they are very close) as he is starting to ask why she is not at work as much, why the treatments, etc. Mom had insisted until yesterday that he was not to be told.
progerss I guess.
She is still running her canteen at the car dealership my step dad works at, and they take the camper-van and go away almost every weekend. They leave for Nashville in a couple of weeks.
This is the weirdest time...she is dying, but not sick, and the idea is so odd that she might not life out the year.She looks fine! My grammy is in complete denial...says mom wont die, period. then there is my brother and his wife, who got all this factual info and they are basically on 'deathwatch' certain she has ONLY 'X' amount of time, and how its too bad she is taking all these treatments, it wont really help etc...they think she should blindly accept the worst prognosis, spend some time with the grandkids, and die.( the chemo leaves her immune system suppressed-therefor, she cant be around any sniffly, runny nosed kids, that is thier problem, she doesnt visit enough) their kids are 4, twins are almost 2, and new baby due in Jan. those kids wont remember her anyway, so who cares how much time she spend with them anyway...mom wont need the memories when she dies.
and there is me...if I accepted the grim prognosis as it is, with no hope, I wouldnt be able to see mom everyday and not cry...I know the facts, and the statistics...5% of people with her diagnosis are still alive in 5 years...well someone has to be in the 5%...why not mom? I did good today...I typed all this without a tear.
I'll go now...best not to push my luck!
thanks for caring JL,
08-26-1999, 03:23 PM
Email me at email@example.com. I'd like to talk to you, if you don't mind :).
08-26-1999, 03:38 PM
Hope I'm not intruding here.
Kelli: Didn't know about your mom. Sincerely hope everything goes "well" and that your mom does join the 5%. Always nice to be in a select group: just look at the SD family!! :)
08-27-1999, 07:17 AM
Just saw Mom, her hair is falling out.
Now I'm really scared.
08-27-1999, 08:07 AM
Kelli: From what very little I know, this is to be expected if she undergoes chemo treatments. It's an unfortunate temporary side-effect; hair grows back once treatment is over.
08-27-1999, 08:59 AM
Kelli, Iworked at the regional cancer center for about 3 months when I moved back home here. Don't be afraid of the hair-falling-out thing-just means the stuff is doing what it's supposed to do! Glad to hear your mom is keeping her spirits up. I hope she's the 5% too! Did you read that article in People on Lance Armstrong? Doctor's didn't give him much of a chance either. Guy won Tour De France this year. Was an interesting article. Maybe your mom and you would find it encouraging.
08-27-1999, 09:07 AM
I know the hair stuff is not going to kill her, but I worry about her spirit if sahe think she looks like she is dying...
which issue of people was that?
thanks guys...I love you.
Since she has a good sense of humor and perspective, remind her that when hair grows back after chemo, it nearly always grows back prettier, fuller and sometimes even in a better color than before. A friend of mine with straight, mousey-brown hair found herself after chemo with wavy gold tresses (and, she's still alive and well some 20 years after liver cancer they were sure would kill her).
08-27-1999, 10:47 AM
thanks flora...anecdotes about people like that keep us going...Just saw mom at lunch...I can SEE the difference already, she will be totally bald in a day or two.
She seems ok with it though...me?I'm freakin! and its so stupid-its just hair, but its like visible proof of the cancer. (shudder)...she will be fine though, I'll break our her old jokes about not having to shave her legs or wax her mustache, etc...it will be ok.
08-27-1999, 11:21 AM
If it's any help, kelli, here's some info. Maybe you already know most of this. (If anyone else out there can add more or can correct any of this please do, I'm no expert!)
Cancer is difficult to treat because there's not a great deal of difference between a cancerous cell and a normal cell. So there's not a specific antibiotic that will attack cancer cells and not healthy cells. One distinguishing feature, however, is that cancer cells are actively growing, whereas most other cells in your body are not. So chemotherapy and radiation therapy are tailored to attack fast-growing cells. Guess which category hair falls into?
Another aspect of this is that chemo, or other therapies, are intended to kill the cancer cells. Again, because of the similarity with normal cells, what will kill the one will degrade the other. So the nausea and pain that accompany many cancer treatments are, in an odd sense, also signs that the treatment is effective. The hope, of course, is to find the treatment that will be most effective against the cancer and least effective against the healthy cells. We've come a long way, but obviously we've got a ways to go yet.
Best wishes and good luck.
"non sunt multiplicanda entia praeter necessitatem"
08-27-1999, 11:59 AM
I didnt know that was why the hair fell out.....y'know, that helps. :) thanks
08-28-1999, 10:07 AM
Kelli, don't you or your mom believe the doctor's prognosis. They don't factor in the human spirit and the will to live another day. They see things in black in white.
I wrote about him before, a good friend of my husbands family had cancer ( I forget what kind, but Lymphotic/sp? comes to mind) and gave him less than a 2% chance to live. This was last year. Chemo/radiation/blood transfusions and a year later he is cancer free. His hair, which was thick white/blonde hair before has come back white/gray and curly.
Keep the faith.
09-01-1999, 11:50 PM
best wishes, kellibelli - sorry to hear about your mom
09-02-1999, 12:04 AM
My great-aunt got just about every cancer you can get (liver, stomach, etc.)--but you'd hardly know it now. She was really sick but she fought it off. We go out together to musicals all the time now. I hope for the best for your mom; at least she can do the chemo, which gives her a better chance. Can't they put surgical masks on the kids or something, though, so she can see them? Sheesh your brother is being an ass; I know it's hard to go through this, but being a pessimist is not the solution.
"Eppur, si muove!" - Galileo Galilei
09-02-1999, 01:43 AM
Hey, Kelli! How are you and your Mom doing?
I know how hard/weird/frustrating this can be for you and everyone around you.
My mother was diagnosed with breast and throat cancer when she was about 42 years old. She went through everything. She started wearing wigs (lost a lot of hair because of chemo), and I would always take one and play for a while with it before brushing it and giving it back.
She spent 7 years in and out of hospitals and clinics. All the doctors and nurses at the Oncology(s?) sick bay knew me. The nurses even let me snick in sometimes so I could be with her and comfort her.
Me and my brothers spend a lot of time filling this little capsules with rattlesnake's skin powder (alternative medicine, 1966), and praying with her.
I was too young, I guess, to realize what was really going on, but I remember her being always happy, and never heard a complaint from her. She took care of the family, as if nothing was wrong. Even when she was in pain from all the surgical procedures she had to go through.
And she still takes care of us. She turned 75 this last May, and she still yells at me once in a while.
Not everybody is part of the 95%. Some are "minorities", and I'm surely glad my Mom is among them.
My thoughts are with you. Tell your Mom to get well soon, and to come say hello to the bunch of weirdos like me here, in the SD.
09-02-1999, 07:23 AM
It is stories like that which keep me going.
Thank you all so much for your support...
Mom leaves next friday for Nashville, and I am keeping my fingers crossed for continued good health.
09-02-1999, 07:43 AM
There are a few other pairs of fingers crossed for your mom out here also.
09-02-1999, 07:54 AM
Ditto on ChiefScott!
I'm not exactly sure which issue it was; it was only this past month or something. If I find it around the house, I'll get your address and mail it to you. Check out your library; they may have it.
09-02-1999, 08:19 AM
I love you guys.
09-02-1999, 08:44 AM
Love you too kel, as if it needed to be stated! :)
09-02-1999, 08:48 AM
Another hair comment - a friend was going through chemo, and lost most of her hair (she shaved it off before she went totally smooth), but she had a remarkably good sense of humor about it. She stole a line from the Beetlejuice cartoon to describe her situation, sorta:
"Ever notice how much easier it is to style your hair when you can take it off your head?"
And I was doing contortions trying to manipulate mirrors so I could see the back of my head. :)
09-02-1999, 02:41 PM
I have to say, I am truly humbled/honored/grateful for all the vibes.
I have some pretty twisted theology issues, and I dont know if there is a god or karma or what, but I do believe that when people care and stay positive, that it can give hope, and you must never underestimate the power of hope.
You all give me hope...that helps me stay strong and give hope to mom...so I can only say with all my heart...thank you...
I hope the goodness you are sending me will return to you a million times over...
I am out of here for the weekend, so I will see ( :) )you all on Tuesday...drive safe, be careful, have fun.
09-03-1999, 12:21 AM
Fingers crossed in Seattle for you and your mom too!
09-03-1999, 12:44 AM
Prayers and ~~~healing vibes~~~ coming your way from Minnesota!
Your attitude is the most healthy of the family you described. You're being supportive of Mom but not morose and sad... She's got one heck of a daughter in you!
Most common question I ask: "What?"
Most common question I get: "Are you really hearing impaired?"
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