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Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

"Lucky"

***This post has been saved under "Draft" since March. Unfinished. There's been so much going on since then, and I didn't finish it. I think in the back of my mind, I was waiting to post it when I could end it with a happy ending. Isn't that how stuff is supposed to end anyway?

I think now however, it is necessary to post this. (I will want to know the details years down the road.)***

Monday 3.22.10 was filled with waiting, hoping, wishing, texting, praying, thinking, and researching. Oh, and working.

Knowing at that very time, my Grandma was with someone extraordinary. Someone we will never forget. Someone she probably won't remember much as far as that day goes, but in theory, will never forget. Not the kind of special-extraordinary person you would hope for anyone to have to be with, but the kind that you are glad when they are with them. Well, after the hoping, wishing, praying parts anyway.

Can you guess who it was?

His name is Dr. Ott, and he is one of the best surgeons in the West.

We couldn't have been more blessed to have him dedicate his Monday (or at least the first 7 hours of it) to be with my Grandma.

A few weeks ago, we found out my Grandma had pancreatic cancer. (If anyone prayed, that's what you were praying for ;).) I just didn't have the words at the time, or really the desire, to put it out on my blog. It was/still is such a shock. Life can be taken so quickly. I can't imagine how my Grandma and Aunt felt walking out of the room after receiving the diagnosis, and hearing that is generally only permits 6-12 months of life.

Can't even begin to imagine.

We were lucky though. Truly lucky.

Pancreatic cancer is one of the fastest growing cancers, with minimal to no symptoms, out there. Usually when someone starts to have symptoms and gets checked it's too late, and the cancer has spread.

...

I'm not going to finish that. I'll just finish up with the catch up. If I can get through this all today. Who knows. Maybe this will sit in Drafts for a few more months.

Grandma had the surgery, and everything went very well. Dr. Ott said over and over her recovery was going great. Towards the end of her hospital stay, she had a minor setback: During the surgery, one of her lymph nodes was accidentally nicked, causing lots of bleeding/leaking. Ott informed us the easiest way to fix this is to keep a drain in Grandma and have her go 2-3 weeks without eating. She would have an IV running 24/7 with enough nutrients to keep her well. It's not something she necessarily needed to stay at the hospital for, so she checked into a Nursing Home (only because a RN had to do the IV stuff). She was doing great, walking a little more each day. She looked fantastic! After 3-4 weeks (I believe) she was able to come back home. At that point, she started to walk less, and never really felt better from the surgery.

A few weeks back, she went in for her CT scans to make sure the cancer was gone, and figure out when chemo could be set up to prevent it from coming back.

On July 6th, we got the results of the CT Scan.

There is no pretty way to say this so I'll just be blunt.

The cancer has come back. In fact, they think it was there the whole time (just not big enough to be visible to the eye). It is now Stage 4 Pancreatic cancer and there is nothing that can be done. They've given our Grandma, Mom, Aunt, Wife, Sister, Cousin, and Best friend "Months, not years" to live.

I've never had news as hard to grasp as this. It's really taken a toll on me, and my whole family. As for now, we are planning visits for everyone to come from out of state to see Grandma, and taking every day as it comes. I've not wished for the weekend to come quicker since. I hope these next few months are the longest of my life. I cherish every single second with my Grandma and truly hope they last forever.

After we thought we were so lucky. We thought we caught it in time and were so fortunate. As it turns out, I guess we are lucky...just not in the way we'd ever, ever imagined. We're so lucky to have had Grandma as long as we have. She has changed, and blessed our lives and will continue to do so forever and ever.

We love you so much Grandma. We're "Lucky" to have you.






2 comments:

Chris and Heather said...

Gosh I'm so sorry Jessica. I know exactly what you're going through though. It's seriously one of the worst feelings in the world. The same thing happened to my family when (after 10 years of remission) my dad went to the hospital and found out that his Leukemia had come back, and he only had several more months to live. I'm glad you taking it on with a positive outlook on everything though. Stay strong! My thoughts are with you and your family!

Trav and Jessica said...

Thank you! I'll try. It's pretty hard news to accept. (You know that) Trying to stay positive and strong though. I know it will make it that much easier (if that's even possible).

10 years? Wow, I hate that it's so unpredictable, and there is absolutely NOTHING that can be done. It definitely makes it hard huh..

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