Friday, December 28, 2012

Staying Strong

The last several days have been challenging for all of us. I won't sugarcoat anything -- it was pretty bad!

A few days into taking the c-met drug (Crizotinib), mom has been experiencing very bad nausea and has been vomiting constantly. As a result of that, she hasn't been able to keep any food or liquids down and her motivation to take pills to ease symptoms have diminished due to the fact she's feeling pretty rotten. Even though she was home for Christmas, she had to spend most of the day in bed. But, we made the most of our holiday together and did truly have a wonderful Christmas. She was quite happy with her new iPad she got from all of us and the Rita Collection-esque cover for it too. :-)

I'm also happy that she's now living with me now and that's going to alleviate a lot of my stress. The last seven months have been crazy running around town and managing two households and all that encompasses that.

On Wednesday, we had a follow-up with Dr. A. I was not there and my husband, sis and her husband went along with her. After hearing about what mom was going through, he suggested a very short break from crizotinib to get her nausea under control and changed her medication around a bit to assist in easing the symptoms. But, within a day of being off the pill, mom began experiencing piercing chest pain and couldn't breathe again. Obviously, the crizotinib was doing something! She was adamant in wanting to just quit and just let things be. I can't blame her fully as her body is going through quite a bit lately. But, I was also quite frustrated that she was willing to give up just a few days after starting to take the pill. We all worked so so hard to get to this point and she was truly given a gift to even have this drug. It's one thing if the pill had no impact and her coming to terms with that but it's another thing to blow an opportunity that can be life saving.

It took a toll on the four of us and we talked a lot. We stepped up and worked out a solution. My sis and husband had a heart to heart talk with her while I was at work yesterday. They explained that all this was bigger than her, which it really was. She has been given a unique opportunity to potentially help others who have this disease down the road and help others now by what we're doing. All eyes were on her. We told her that it was essentially her choice but once you turn your back on treatment and head to hospice, there's no turning back. She decided to keep fighting!

My own two cents is... I know the chances are slim and even though we've lost my two cousins from this -- no two paths are the same. Just because, it's the same disease with similar symptoms -- it does not define your outcome.

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