Friday, September 16, 2016


Like most children, I am used to my parents stepping in between my brother and I to smooth over disputes. However, having to call both of my parents individually to get things settled down is not something I'm used too.

The first day of treatment which is really just getting situated in the living quarters and doing a dry run of radiation was about to start so my parents loaded up the car and set off to the large regional cancer treatment hospital. Somewhere along the way they got into road construction with misplaced detour signs that led them on a 12 mile loop, twice, that still didn't get them onto the freeway they wanted to get onto. That evidently led to some dispute between my parents.

When I got in touch with my Dad on the way home from the regional center that evening to run the farm, he was obviously upset. He thought there was something wrong with Mom's head that changed her mentally. I knew that was not true of course and that it was just stress, in both of them. I told him so and that as soon as Mom got into a routine with her treatments that things would get better (and they did) and that seemed to calm him back down. The next day when I talked to him, he was back to normal and had realized that they had just both been stressed.

After talking with Dad, I called up Mom and talked to her. She too was stressed and admitted that she had been pretty hard on Dad on the way up. She couldn't help it when she had to say goodbye knowing that everyone was healthy and here she was sick by herself. (Know that she isn't alone and has to have a person with her at all times during the initial weeks of therapy.) By the following day as we sat talking at Hope Lodge, she was back to normal and no longer worried about the radiation since she had completed her first dose out of 34 scheduled doses. I don't blame either of my parents for this because I know I would be feeling the same in either of their shoes but it certainly is a first for me getting in-between and having to smooth ruffled feathers.

Mom was still a bit stressed when I left because her chemo treatment would begin that evening. She has five chemo pills that precisely dose her on body weight that she has to take along with anti nausea drugs. She's worried about putting all those chemicals in her body and I can't blame her and have to resist telling her that the chemicals are no longer what's going to kill her. Although their are no statistics that support a cure, if there is ever to be one, her best chance is taking the chemo and getting radiation.

I'll write another post next time about the treatments and the Hope Lodge so to not make this post some long. 33 more treatments to go.


Vince said...

They are both scared witless, but with different causes. And the closer they are generally the harder this will be. It might be an idea to hire someone to give hr a hand at home. Not so much to do the work but to have a buffer that forces them to reform path of communication, for the duration.

sage said...

This is a scary time for them and it is good that you can be there to help them through it. Prayers for your mother.

Ed said...

Vince - Scared is a great way to put it. One is scared of dying too soon and the other is scared of losing the one they love. Due to the rules of the hospital for radiation, my mom must have someone with her at all times over the next few weeks and possibly the entire treatment so she does have a buffer. On the weekends, I'm generally around and with my mom being home, attitudes are much better. As I right this, she has undergone treatment number 8 and things are getting more routine.

Sage - Thank you. I think it is a scary time for all of us but harvest will be starting in probably less than a week and then we will be too busy to be scared.

Kelly said...

I know this is one of those situations we can't truly understand unless we've experienced something similar. Even then, no two situations are alike.

It sounds like y'all have a great support group all around. And you know you have many who are praying for all of you.

Bob said...

Kelly's right, no two situations are the same but this is a bit similar to what I went through with my parents 20 years ago when my mother was receiving cancer treatment. The fact is what your folks got in a dither about is not what they got in a dither about if you know what I mean. It's symptomatic of their emotions. And you're learning what it's like when the child becomes the parent. You are up to the challenge, Ed, but you'll need to do your own venting as well. Blessings and prayers to all of you.