Thursday, March 31, 2016

The truth of colon cancer

Colon cancer affects so much but of course... your colon.  Every bowel movement with colon cancer as advanced as mom's is painful and you just regret that you have to go at all. Then there comes the other trouble. Any swelling can cause a backup if you will. Those are not uncommon though they are very painful. It was brought to my attention yesterday that it had been 8 day's since mom, had in fact, had a "full" bowel movement' by the nurse. She said if I could not get her to "go" but the end of the night that we would have to take her to the ER the next day and if it was a blockage that would mean surgery for most people but she is not most people. With her cancer, the hospital may not even be willing to do surgery.

We tried everything I could think of. Teas, cleanses, drinks, soups, enemas. Nothing was working, just more pain and us having to give her more and more pain medication. It's a humbling experience for a mom to have to let her daughter take care of those needs for her. I imagine the humility, the pain and the fear. I tried to limit these things by downloading a game we could play together while we waited out the treatments. It finally came to an "I am going to end up at the ER either way, so please just take me, the pain is bad and nothing is working" so I honored this request and called Hospice and we took her to the ER. They tried everything they could think of while avoiding taking her to surgery. It eventually came to a "looking around by the DR" who determined it was less likely that there was a blockage and more likely there was some of the cancer that had grown and is now pressing on her colon and bladder making her feel like she has to go or that she is backed up even when she doesn't. She's also not eating enough to create what the rest of us would consider a "normal" bowel movement'  She will have to start picking days one at a time. Each being weighed by how much pain she can tolerate vs how much she wants to do that day, but not both.

We have entered into the second phase of the cancer her DR told us about back in Dec. That she would have more bad days than good, more sleeping day's then awake ones.

It has hit me pretty hard today and I have had a hard time dealing with it. My friend Jo and her family came over and cooked our whole family dinner. It was sweet and an amazing gesture. I can not be more grateful.

If you wish to spend time with the Shirley you know, love or enjoy spending time with, I beg you... make the time now. Call her on the phone, send her a note, Skype with her, come see her.

I feel time is slipping and I am losing. So much I wanted to do, so many memories I wanted to make right, so little time to make things the way I would like. Please don't wait.


  1. We enjoyed having dinner with Adam, Makenzie, Lexie, Nicole, Sherly and Al. Grilled ham and cheese and tomato soup. πŸ…

  2. We enjoyed having dinner with Adam, Makenzie, Lexie, Nicole, Sherly and Al. Grilled ham and cheese and tomato soup. πŸ…