Thursday, April 17, 2014
Today was a long day. After writing the Should vs Must essay I had planned on coming home and working on my response essay. After I had gotten home I got a text from my mom telling me that my grandma was rushed to the ER because she had two blood clots, one in each lung. I got home not to long ago and sat down to write my response when I realized that the response that I was doing felt like I was writing about something that I really didn't care about. I intended to write about one of the options but it just wasn't feeling right. So this is me, writing about something that I do feel is worth writing about.
These past few months have been a challenge for my family. We found out my grandma has stage 4 lung cancer which had spread all over her body. Since then we have been on a never ending rollercoaster ride. Just two months ago my grandma was walking around, going to family birthday dinners and now she is confined to her bed and battles daily with aches and pains. The first month was probably the hardest because it was an adjustment. We hadn't ever gone through something like this before. She had been placed on tons of meds because one of the cancer masses was pushing so hard on her back that it fractured a disc.She started her chemo and of course she felt sick but we all assumed it was just part of the process. After she stopped eating and was vomiting continuously we all started to worry. She lost 17 pounds within a week and the doctor said if she continued to lose weight that he'd have to stop the chemo.
While all this was happening I would try to visit my grandma after school at least 3 or 4 times a week, asking friends to drop me off at her house or the hospital, where ever she was at the time. It was crazy seeing the shift of the dynamics at my grandparents house. My grandparents have been married for 50 years and they are as traditional as it gets, she does the house work while he goes to work and relaxes when he came home. Seeing my grandpa learn to wash clothes, cook his own food, and cater to my grandma was a change. He does whatever he can to make her happy or smile. Their love for each other is incredible and proves that love conquers all. As a week or two went by my grandma stopped going out to the living room and would remain in bed all day, my grandpa went out and bought her a brand new tv so she would be able to watch tv in HD.
The hardest thing about this battle is that their are good days and bad days. Dont get me wrong, im thankful for the good days, but at some point the good days give you hope only to be followed by the eerie reminder of the cancer inside her. Last week had been going good, she even considered going out to dinner for my grandpas 75th birthday. ( it was a big deal because she doesnt like going out in public because of the affects chemo had on her body) So yesterday when my grandpa birthday came along she had been having a bad day. Her breathing seemed short and she seemed to struggle. We brought my grandpa a steak dinner and he ate it in the kitchen while she was asleep in her bed. It was heartbreaking to see him eat alone. We sang happy birthday, ate cake yet the fact that my grandma wasn't truly there was in the back front of everyone's minds.
So today she was scheduled for an appointment to see how the chemo had been working. After her scan her doctor sent her to the ER. They found two clots in her lungs. One is blocking 2/3 of her artery making it hard to breathe. She was put into the critical care unit and was put on blood thinners in order to help dissolve the blood. All you can do at the hospital is wait. Waiting is hell. You are left wondering of the outcome, and hoping for the best. She was tired all day and seemed weak but I continued to remain hopeful. Visiting hours were over so we came home. Going home when a loved one is in the hospital isn't great. You're still "waiting" your just not confined to the visiting area. About an hour ago we were told that she had to be taken off the blood thinners because she was passing blood. Back to square one, waiting.
To be blunt, this situation is crap. It seems like every time we hope for good news we get bad news. Remaining positive throughout this whole situation hasn't been easy by any means but I do my best to keep a smile on my face for my mom and family members that aren't in good spirits. I guess what keeps me going is that I look at my grandmas life and its inspiring. She found true love, started a family that has expanded and grown, and she grew old with her husband. She has lived a great life and I can see it in her eyes that she loved her life and is content with it. Her strength give me hope, its keeps me going in hope that other people will see me still smiling and realize that even though things get rough it doesn't mean we need to stop being happy. Coping with the fact that she wont be here much longer is hard, but I want her to see me happy during this time. I want her last moment with me to be a positive experience not me being sad and negative.
I know this was way off topic, and its not much of a response. But I felt like it was more worth writing than a response on an article that I cant relate to at the moment. In this moment this is what matter to me. Writing this didn't seem like homework because it something that I am passionate about, something that I care about. I guess you can say this entry was my "Hack This Course" moment.