It has been nearly a month since I last wrote about my Mother and her battle with rectal cancer. And I have been chastised by several people for not doing so but I didn't want it to seem like I was soliciting sympathy. So I humbly apologize to the family and friends who were expecting more frequent updates to be posted here.
Mom has been a real trooper through it all, handling it quite well physically and emotionally. The only thing she hasn't cooperated with is eating and drinking fluids. We had been warned that during the third week of treatment (she is getting both radiation and chemotherapy) that the side-effects would start showing up – and they did, with a vengeance.
Imagine if you will, having an extreme case of diarrhea lasting for a week or more. You can imagine how that would feel if you've experienced even one day of that crap (pun intended). On top of that (or rather beneath it) you've gotten a very severe sunburn where the skin has peeled off several layers and exposed raw flesh. The combination of the two is indescribable.
Then her blood count dropped. She had been holding at a level that was low but it hadn't dropped significantly until a few days ago. Low blood counts cause weakness. On Wednesday, she was at the point where she could help us very little with getting her in and out of bed and she couldn't stand on her own. The treatment center was closed Wednesday due to the nasty weather so she missed that session.
Thursday morning she fell trying to get out of bed on her own. She has two black eyes and probably has a broken nose. She looks awful. Even worse now than yesterday morning. If it wasn't so sad it would be funny.
We weren't due for blood tests or to see the doctor until Friday but I called and we went in Thursday afternoon. Her blood count had dropped significantly since the previous Friday so she was scheduled for a transfusion Friday after her radiation treatment.
I had a terrible time getting her up and dressed yesterday (Friday). She was no help whatsoever, it was like all of her strength had simply melted away. She was literally dead weight. Somehow we managed and I got her to the treatment center. Once the doctor saw her it was decided to admit her to the hospital.
When my niece and I left the hospital last night at 11:30 pm they still had not started the blood transfusion. It was expected to be started within a few hours. They did get a saline solution started to get fluids into her. She is extremely weak from the diarrhea and low blood count. Getting some new blood into her as well as fluids should make a big difference.
She hasn't lost her sense of humor: When the nurse asked her what they could do to make her feel better she simply said, “let me get some sleep!” It seemed like as soon she would drift off to sleep someone came in to prod or poke her to get blood or something... that's the nature of hospitals though.
And now, I'm off to spend the day at the hospital.
Prayers gratefully accepted.