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Jay Lake
Date: 2011-04-03 03:40
Subject: [cancer] The return of the Fear, and the Child steps up
Security: Public
Tags:cancer, child, family, friends, health, personal
So my next scan is in less than two weeks. The associated oncology consult is two weeks from tomorrow. That is where the hammer comes down, so to speak.

As it happens, my hindbrain fixates on the actual scanning process instead of the consultation. The scan itself is just a procedure. I show up at the imaging center, drink some fairly foul stuff, sit around for an hour, then spend about five minutes inside a nubbly beige donut having my personal bits unduly warmed by the tracer injection. Really, this is a trivial activity.

Tell that to my inner wibbler. Wow is that hard.

Then there's three days of this, that and the other thing, waiting for the results to be presented to me. That's where I find out whether I spend the next six months happy, healthy and busy; or I go back for another year-long tour of duty in Hell. Or, possibly, the ambiguous middle ground of "we think but we're not sure..." Hell's antechamber, with the usual gripping reading material of waiting rooms everywhere.

Given my odds of recurrent metastasis, this is like playing Russian roulette with three bullets in the chamber. And the pressure of that is starting to creep up on me. I haven't had any crying jags yet, but they're almost certainly coming. Likewise the episodic irruptions of the Fear, the grief and the depression.

And I will go on as I have. Life is very good right now. I am pretty damned happy. I just want it to stay this way for while.

On a related note, [info]the_child and I had lunch with my parents yesterday. After lunch, I was planning to again go visit my friend who's been in the oncology ward for the past ten days. As of Friday, he's been referred to hospice care, with no further treatment planned other than palliative care. I told [info]the_child I was planning to have Mom and Dad drop her back by the house so I could go straight over. She asked if she could come with me to the hospital instead.

This surprised me. She's not been comfortable with doctors and hospitals for quite a while now. Too much medical chaos in her family, between her mom's week-long stay in the ICU just about a year ago, her grandmother's heart surgery, her other grandmother's knee surgery, and my ongoing cancer struggles. Also, she's not particularly close to our sick friend.

I asked her why she wanted to come. She said, "Well, if I don't see him now, I might not get to see him again."

This led to a long conversation about cancer and family life. The mother of one of her school friends is at about the same stage of cancer treatment as my friend. She asked me what he would do without his mom. We talked about children losing their parents, and how I'd spent a lot of time thinking about what she'd do without me if this got me.

The conversation wasn't terribly long, but it was deep and serious. She was incredibly focused and mature and thoughtful. And when we finally did reach the hospital, [info]the_child spent an hour talking animatedly to my friend.

I am very, very proud of her today. Her focus and thoughtfulness is easing a portion of my Fear.

While I am still afraid, I am a little less afraid for the love in my life.

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Kari Sperring
User: la_marquise_de_
Date: 2011-04-03 10:46 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Your daughter is amazing.
And we are here for you, whatever happens, and we are rooting for you and sending good wishes and all that stuff.
kari xxxx
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scarlettina: Circle of Life
User: scarlettina
Date: 2011-04-03 13:32 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Circle of Life
the_child is most assuredly her father's daughter. You and MotC have done well by her. If she ever wants to talk about children losing their parents, I'm available, though I don't know if she'd be comfortable talking with me. It's an option, though.

As for your scan, I'll be in New York then, but I'll be with you in spirit. One day at a time, Jay. ::hug::
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T Enigma
User: T Enigma [google.com]
Date: 2011-04-03 14:50 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My sympathy on EH. I never got around to meeting him but I know he has been a fixture. For hospice care, Serenity is a good provider, if you wish to pass it on...
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The Empress of Ice Cream
User: icecreamempress
Date: 2011-04-03 16:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Oh, go, the_child! Asking the big questions is so courageous. And reaching out to your friend is lovely, especially at a time when nobody would fault her for wanting to give it a pass.
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User: adelheid_p
Date: 2011-04-03 17:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I don't think I can express enough how wonderful and healthy this is for the_child. My daughter had introductions to death of the elderly at an early age. We lived with her great-grandfather from the time he was 85 (and she was born) to when he died at age 97 (and she was 12 years old). During that time he had a friends that passed on and we once went took her G-Grandpa to visit at a funeral home viewing. It wasn't my intention for my daughter and I go to in, but we talked on the way that about how this man died (she had asked if he was shot --it's amazing what kids absorb even when you try not to expose them--and I had answered that he died naturally and had lived a long life, etc.) and the purpose of viewings, etc. she decided that she wanted to go in and see. So we did. I felt it helped her to process death without the added stress of emotional close family members. In any event, I really think you are being as good a parent as you possibly can here.

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Twilight: Lwaxana Troi
User: twilight2000
Date: 2011-04-03 18:55 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Lwaxana Troi
The best part is when they surprise you like that ;>
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User: suzan_h
Date: 2011-04-04 00:56 (UTC)
Subject: Impressive
You've got a hell of a kid there. And it says a lot about the terrifc job you and MotC are doing.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2011-04-04 00:59 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Impressive
Thank you.
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mlerules: labyrinth
User: mlerules
Date: 2011-04-04 05:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Life is very good right now. I am pretty damned happy. I just want it to stay this way for while.

May it be so. *wishing you well w/all my being*

I am very, very proud of her today. Her focus and thoughtfulness is easing a portion of my Fear.

While I am still afraid, I am a little less afraid for the love in my life.

Oh, this is SO good to hear/know. Whenever you go, you'll leave so much that's good behind (and I ain't talking 'bout books).
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User: hrhqod1
Date: 2011-04-05 17:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Wow, what a wonderful person your daughter is. This made me burst out crying.
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