Tuesday, February 5, 2013

They were right...Cancer really does suck...

I never doubted people when they said "cancer sucks," but it is hard to truly understand the severity until you're faced with it...against your will. 

I won't go into all the little details, but just a few weeks ago my mother had a procedure done that ultimately found a tumor at the top of her stomach.  The tumor measures 4cm wide and is very aggressive.  She has gastric cancer.  This type of cancer is not prevalent in the United States, but IS in most of Asia (more so in Japan).  It is a mix of genetics and diet (smoked foods, pickled/salty foods).  This cancer is also considered to be one of the deadliest cancers one can be diagnosed with with a 15% survival rate in stage 3.  What stage is my mom in?  Stage 3.  (facts my mom doesn't need to know)

It's all been overwhelming to say the least and I can't help but feel angry about it all.  For anyone that knows my mom, she is a healthy person.  She works out regularly, she eats right, she only drinks water, she doesn't drink or smoke...and this is her reward??  She spent 24 years taking care of her handicapped son with cerebral palsy only to watch him die 6 years ago...and now...she has to suffer through months of chemo and radiation, then major surgery where she might lost all her stomach, and then more chemo and radiation.

By the way - one of the first signs of stomach cancer is acid reflux.

Maybe this blog is more of me venting and less informational, but it genuinely makes me question certain things.  I know for those out there that might be reading this, please don't tell me this God's plan because all it does is make me think you have no clue what you're talking about.  I also have a hard time hearing, "We will pray that God will cure the cancer."  I have mixed feelings about that statement.  On one had, I believe that IS the appropriate thing to ask God for, but on the other hand what if that is what everyone prays for and it doesn't happen??  Then was it Gods plan?  I wanted God to make my brother better, but that didn't happen...so what am I supposed to think? 

Honestly, I believe shitty things happen.  I don't think God has control over who gets sick.  I believe all we can ask God for when horrible things happen to us is that he helps us get through it without becoming bitter.  All I can do is be positive for my mother and show her everyday that I am here for her.

I know one of my mom's fears is to lose her hair, so I took her Saturday to find a wig that matched her natural hair, so it would be one less thing for her to worry about.  The ladies at Admiral Beauty Supply (51st and Harvard) were BEYOND nice and super helpful.  I've even considered shaving my own hair off, so my mom wouldn't feel alone...and that's when I realized how much my hair means to me. For women, our hair is such a big part of us...we identify with it and we are identified by it...I never realized how much its like a security blanket of sorts.  Then I thought of the girl I saw at one of my moms appts in the waiting room...she was probably 14, maybe 15 years old.  She was going through chemo, so she had no hair and she was walking around smiling. 

It will grow back...

Overall, my mom is hopeful and positive.  She came out of the doctors office yesterday saying, "We all have to pray!"  I've said it before...she is a stronger more faithful woman than me.
 

I thought it would be easier to blog about this, so I don't have to answer the same questions over and over again.  No offense my awesome friends. I do appreciate those that have taken the time out of their life to see how I'm doing and how my mom is doing.  It really means a lot to me.  Some people its been a pleasant surprise, some I'm shocked I haven't heard from (but I do know life gets in the way), some I label as "ol faithfuls"  :) 

Anyways, Thursday it begins.  My mom will be getting her port put in for chemo treatments, along with a feeding tube...

I'll keep everyone posted.  Thanks again for those that took the time out to read this and said a prayer.  I feel genuinely blessed to have you guys in my life. 



4 comments:

A Nerd and A Free Spirit said...

I'm sorry, friend. Prayers for you and your family!

~K

Cyndi Lou said...

We are thinking of you and your family Cristal, please let us know if you need anything.Evenings and weekends I can babysit, or whatever you need.

YoungSun said...

I am sorry..Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

Jordan Sanders said...

Cristal,

I am so sad to be reading this post. I hate the fact that shitty things happen to awesome people. I don't know if you would find any comfort in reading her facebook page at all, but a wife of a high school classmate was recently diagnosed with stage 4 ovarian cancer. She is a Christian girl who is just clinging to Jesus through this all. I am so sorry for all of the cliche' statements that you are going to receive. I hope that you all find that support that you need as you navigate your way through this new chapter in life.

I wish there was something I could do for you to make things better.

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