Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Bad news for my family...

My beautiful, fiesty, kind, sweet, fun MIL has pancreatic cancer.

Inoperable. She'll likely come here (to our house) for hospice care ~ if she makes it out of the hospital.

I am so sad. She's only 62 years old ~ we were hoping for more years with her. More time. We'll have to make the most of what we have left....

Today, they are going to attempt a stent in the pyloric valve of her stomach, to hold it open so she can eat by mouth. (The tumor on her pancreas is so large that it's putting pressure on her lower stomach and closing off the valve ~ so nothing can pass though her stomach.)

Additional complications include a clot in the major vessel leading to her liver, along with potential mets to her kidneys, lung and liver. Renal insufficiency. She's malnourished and dehydrated.

And still, she's laughing and cracking jokes and making us all smile.

I love her so very much. She's been a part of my life for almost half my life ~ I met her son (and, of course, J) when I was 20 years old. She's been a guiding force for me ~ a strong, capable woman who never lets anything get her down. She'll face the end of this life with grace and dignity, as she's handled virtually everything else that life has thrown at her...I have no doubt.

I'm so honored that she wants to come to our house for hospice. So honored to be able to care for her in her last days. I pray that she makes it here ~ she so wants to die "at home" instead of in the hospital ~ and I so want to give her that gift. To return to her a tiny little bit of the love and care that she's shown others by helping her make this transition.

I kept Maddy home today ~ we're going to the hospital in a few minutes to see Granny and wait for the results of the procedure. We'll meet with the hospice team, and the care team at the hospital. Get things set up here at our house. Hoping to have her home in a few days to a week....

I refuse to miss her until she is actually gone ~ and her spirit is so strong that you can't help but bask in it while you are sitting with her ~ so I just have to fight the despair when I am alone.

Prayers and good thoughts for Jan are much appreciated ~ she could use an easy transition from this life, and that's what we're all praying for. Less pain, more laughter. Less medical intervention and more sharing stories.

I love you, Momma.

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