Wednesday, September 28, 2016
I spent a day with my mom, whom at the time was going through her sixth of thirty-four days of radiation not too long ago. It's about a two mile walk one way from Hope Lodge to this facility above where she gets her radiation and she has set herself the goal of walking under her own steam those four miles every single day. Having done quite a bit of reading on others who have had similar radiation treatments, I wasn't too optimistic because it always seemed as if radiation beat them down by the end. However, as we were talking with Mom's oncologist on this particular day, he thought that as healthy as Mom is and since she has felt absolutely no effects of the radiation or chemotherapy now six days into her treatment, there is a good chance that should continue through the remaining twenty-eight days. It certainly made my mom (and me) happy to hear that.
My mom doesn't stop at just the four miles of walking though. She also walks to lunch some days using the extensive trail system in the college town and probably average six miles a day total. Since her treatments take about fifteen minutes of her time a day, she has the luxury of plenty of time and it was a real treat to spend it with my mom walking around town. With my backpack of some water and a book to read when she was seeing doctors, I felt like I was in college again.
Hope Lodge has a 28 patient capacity and they are almost always full. Still, it is rare to see the other cancer patients during the day except for around meal times. They all seem beat down and just go back to their rooms after eating, which isn't allowed in their rooms. So my mom ends up spending much of her times with various care takers of cancer patients who are more likely to be seen in the common areas. At first this worried me thinking my mom might end up like them four or five weeks from now. However, she is a superwoman, very fit and now the doctors have said she probably won't feel any effects. For now, my mom only goes to her room to sleep at night and has been keeping busy during the day. I hope the remaining weeks will go as fast as the first one did.