Saturday, January 28, 2006

Need a parenting board?

I just launched my own parenting community. Please PM me fore more information!

Michael's Yarn Event

http://www.michaels.com/art/online/static?page=yarn_event

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Looking for someone to take over my rings

Okay, I've been less than faithful to these rings, and due to mom's cancer and things so up in the air, I'd like to turn the rings over to someone more responsible. If you are a current ring member and are interested, please contact me with your ring address, and a short little blurb with why you'd like to do it.

Mom has been in the hospital twice during the past few weeks, and things have been very scary. You can keep up with me on my girls blog: thegirls.in-focus-graphics.com.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Sobbing

I just spent the past 30 minutes curled up on my couch in a ball. I don't know if I was trying to cry or trying not to. The chemo is really hard on my mother. She's only had two IV treatments and is miserable. She has various stomach problems which disrupt her normal day and sleeping patterns, her mouth is raw and hurts to eat, and she wants to sleep all the time. She is already showing signs of infection (high fever) and started antibiotics on Sunday. It's so hard because we don't know if she's sick because of the chemo, or because she's dying. What happened to the "quality of life" the doctors spoke of? Is mom doing this for us? Is it fair to want her around if it makes her this sick? How long will she have if she gives up? How much time is this really buying? I guess if there were an end in sight, and we knew this was doing some good it would be different. Because chemo is cumulative, it'll be worse each time. She has another treatment tomorrow, then she gets a week off. Even if the chemo IS working, more tumors will show up somewhere else. Dammittofuckinghell. I hate this and the idea that there is no happy ending. I have to stop now because I'm crying so hard I can't read the words I'm typing.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Disheartening

Mom found out yesterday the liver tumor has grown from 2cm to 5cm in the month to month and a half since it was discovered. The one on her lung has grown as well, but not as much as the liver tumor. It's been a rough time since finding out it grew so rapidly. We're all just in shell shock and more disheartening news just rattles us to the core. I heard the anxiety and uncertainty in my mother's voice for the first time, yesterday. I worry about her as it's the first crack in the brave front she's projected since the diagnosis. I know she's remaining strong for all of us, which isn't exactly fair, either. My father is just reeling, and I believe he's dealing the worst out of all of us.

On a good note, she was assigned a new doctor yesterday after she told them she was not planning on following her current doctor when he moves to another hospital next month. This doctor is as knowledgeable, but has the human quality that mom's previous doctor was missing. He explained everything in detail, and for whatever reason, some of the stuff we already knew finally clicked in mom's head. The stress of the whole situation has been keeping her from comprehending all of it. He even asked if he could hug her before the visit was over.

While receiving chemo, she was in a large room with other patients. That was hard to accept as well. However, she did meet a woman who had metastacized breast cancer who has been fighting it since 2001. She said the chemo all but erradicated the tumors many times, but as it's in her blood, they always come back and the treatments start again. Mom told her she didn't think she could handle that. The woman told her that facing the alternative was much worse, and to take it one day at a time. Be greatful for the good days. She also said she has to keep living, because every year medical knowledge grows, and who knows...maybe one day there will be a cure.

On a knitting front, I've been knitting in ss because my mind just can't handle a whole lot and I'm taking out more than I'm knitting. Here's a sweater I'm working on for my 4 year old. I plan to make a matching one for my 1 year old.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

And so begins the hard process...

Mom had the visit with her oncologist on Friday. Here's what we learned:

* There is no cure for breast cancer once it has spread. Mom's chemo is intended to prolong life without making her too sick to make it worthwhile.

* Mom's cancer is moderately aggressive.
* They hope to get a central line put in next week and mom will start chemo shortly thereafter. They are aiming for the first treatment by the end of next week.

* Mom will start Taxotere and possibly an experimental trial of Gleevec. Gleevec is an oral chemotherapy medicine which has not been approved by the FDA for metastasized breast cancer, but it has proven to be somewhat of a miracle drug in treating CML (leukemia). The trial has been around for a while, but mom hasn't decided if she wants to take part in the study.

* Mom will have one treatment a week for 3 weeks, have one week of rest, and then another 3 weeks of treatments. After the end of the first stage, she will have a CAT scan to see how well the tumors are responding to the chemo.

* She may or may not have the side effects of chemo: hair loss, fingernail changes and loss, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, etc. Everyone reacts differently.

* There is no way of knowing how much time we have. It may be as little as months, or as long as years. We just have to take one day at a time.

I ask that you please keep my mother (Janice) and my family in your thoughts and prayers. Thank your for your support so far. You have no idea how much it means.

On a knitting note, another hat, modeled by my unsuspecting computer game playing husband:







It was knit with eslsebeth lavold angora designer's choice in Misty Blue on size 7s using this free pattern.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Window paints and glittery hats

Mom's favorite holiday has always been Halloween. It's one that's all about the kids and is just fun without all the other holiday pressures. I painted her front window last night. It's kind of juvenile looking, but I had lots of fun doing it and mom just loved it.



I also knit her a cap, as she meets with the oncologist on Tuesday. I used the The 'No-Hair-Day' Hairy Chemo Cap pattern and Adriafil Stars to create it. It's great--lilac and glittery, and mom loves it, too.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Sigh

Okay, first the good news...The ENT doesn't think the tumor on the tonsil is cancer. He thinks it's a sinus that's dropped?

The bad news. The liver biopsy showed it was breast cancer that's spread. They think that's what's on the lung, too. The one on the lung is right on top of a coronary artery and no surgeon will touch it. Not that they think surgery would do any good on either tumor. She still has to meet with the oncologist, but the surgeon/breast cancer specialist today used phrases such as:

"quality of life"
"comfortable"
"not much to do"

I asked mom if we're talking weeks, months, years and she said definitely not years. They're thinking about chemotherapy, but only if the pros will outweigh the cons and there's going to be a significant change in outcome.

I.am.completely.devastated. Please keep us in your prayers.

On a knitting note, I'm about 2 cm away from the sleeve shaping of a simple sweater for Adelaide. I'll post pics when I get a chance.