Thursday, January 29, 2009

This Time of the Year

I have reflected on the past year and I think of February. Looking at it now it feels like a drowning dream. Feb. 10th is when I found out that my husband had a pancreatic tumor. Life went into overdrive then the brakes were slammed on. The cycle went like that for a while. A mass was detected in the ER as the result of kidney stone pain. The staff in ER crooking their finger at me from the hallway to come see them; should he be told? His fathers death at age 54 of pancreatic cancer. In one instant life changed forever. Fear, dread, and more fear and dread....

The biopsy, the schedules for numerous tests, the waiting for results, results inconclusive, more tests, waiting for results, no communication from the dr.'s. How alone and frightening that was. When the Whipple procedure was scheduled it didn't take place magically in a few days, no, it took some time to schedule an operating room for that looooong length of time and to coordinate with an assisting surgeon. A month felt like a hundred years.

In the midst of it all, the surgeon, Dr. Groeger called to see how we were. I nearly cried, such a small thing was HUGE. We had only met him one time but I said something like, "No one is telling us anything, sometimes I think everyone has forgotten about my husband." His response was, "I have his file on my desk and I think about him every day." I'd seen his desk and it was extremely organized and had no clutter and I knew he was the right person for my husband. Going into surgery I don't know what my husband felt but I had the supreme confidence that he was in the best hands possible and I thank God for this. Some people sort of hinted that he should go to Stanford and that was always a possibility since our insurance would cover it but no, who had time to start over with a new set of unknown dr.'s and all of that especially when he had the best physician possible.

The hospital stay seemed endless; he had a very, very rough time with medications. They didn't agree with him and made him very crazy acting. So, here it is February coming up, so much of my life last year was involved in caregiving, I can't say I lost it because that sounds like I regret it or something, but it just seems unreal; like a drowning dream.
This old photo is some Norwegian kin!

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