Oct 27, 2019
“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future
To a known God”
Corrie ten Bloom
My wife of 58 years (June 10) and best friend Eileen had been diagnosed with terminal cancer of the esophagus, which has now moved to the stomach. She has received radiation to reduce the original tumor (which worked), and has undergone chemo, which reduced or eliminated the original tumor, but the new tumor in the stomach requires a different chemo to slow its’ progress. This blog will give my thoughts, fears, prayers, and hopes during this challenging and difficult time.
The oncologist was happy for Eileen, and he said that all vital signs were good. Her potassium level was low so she will be taking some pills for a few weeks so help. Eileen lost 11 lbs. over the 6 weeks since we had seen him, and has lost around 30 overall. The oncologist does not seem to upset by that, but has prescribed medical pot in pill form to see if that helps to increase appetite, for she has no appetite right now. It is a light dose, and he wants to see how she does, and may increase it as time goes by. We will report on it if nothing seems to happen after a week or two. We come back in 6 weeks, after two rounds of the chemo pill. He could find no outward signs of lumps or other signals, and wants to hold off further tests until after we come back in early December, and the will probably order some scans as he called it.
And so the days slide by. It is a rare day that I don’t have to travel into Binghamton for this or that, and each trip takes at least an hour and a half, and I worry when I leave Eileen alone. Eileen usually gets up at least once during the night, and I almost always wake for that. Then keeping all clean and neat is not my best strength, but important for Eileen’s peace of mind. Eileen can do little more than rest in the chair, and I am constantly concerned that she may fall and hurt something. Even though she has fallen several times since early this year after the diagnoses, nothing serious occurred. She seems more stable today, and has not fallen in several weeks until today (Sunday), but walks without the walker with difficulty, even though she avoids the walker if she can.
But we still have time to pray and meditate together, and look at the beauty of this time of year out our windows. We have learned to take each moment as it is presented to us, and so each moment is grace-filled and full of that “terrible beauty” that the poets talk about. I am always surprised as I watch the sun set every evening, wondering where the day went, still having more things I should have done. Such as sitting here after eight Saturday eve writing these thoughts and prayers.
We had the pleasure of having our nephew Pat here last eve and this morning. Pat had spent much time here growing up as a teen, having fun with and often leading the charge during the joyful summer months. He is the same age as our girls, and we laughed often and hard at the funny plays that they all put on.
God has blessed us so much in our lives, and this quiet time we are in, even though filled with all the little (and not so little) things to do, has given us a time to reflect on our lives and be filled with gratitude at the years of love that has filled our days.
Gentle Mother-Father, Your guidance during this time is clear and heartfelt. We rest in Your care, knowing that You will do what is best for us and for the reasons we are here. We spend time each day being grateful for the extended time we have had together, and know that the future is wonderful and filled with Love and joy.