Saturday, October 19, 2013

Cancer Mom PTSD

I'm sure there is a study about us. 
I'm sure there has been research.
I'm sure thousand's of mom's have come to realize they are afflicted.
I'm sure there are traumatized dad's and siblings and extended family members.

It is just no fun when it rears its ugly head.  When a glance at a photo or a Facebook post or a text or a call from a friend, it rushes back.  It presents its self front and center.  A real living thing.  The train leaves the station and you are on it.

I was thinking about all of that as I drove across town to meet Darlis this morning.  She received news yesterday that her almost 17 year old has more tumors on her lungs.  Lungs that have endured surgery once and will have to do it again.  Katie was 15 when her knee decided to give a home to Osteosarcoma.  A lovely cancer with the propensity to travel to the lungs when it is found in the bone.

They are starting to realize she has never been out of the woods and has never been disease free. Cancer has taken up a place in her body and loves it. They throw lots of stuff at her cancer and then it laughs. 

Breakfast was about hungry listening.  Listening and rolling the information around in my mind.  Trying to help with the hard surface impact but knowing there is much of a chance to keep the impact from happening. 

Okay, I know there are those who will add prayers and chants and rages against God, Allah, Buddha and the rest.  I know we are not supposed to think the worse and say repeatedly, "its going to be okay".   But when you are in the middle of this, you have to go to the darkest place first.  You have to see down that scary black hole.  It is necessary to know it is there and is real.  It is only then that you can take a few steps away and see what the path is to avoid the plunge.  Chemo, radiation, surgery, and in our case transplant.  You have to know what you are facing or you could never, every allow the docs to do what they do to your child.  No sane parent would ever let anyone put poison and radiate to the n'th degree a child unless they knew there was a chance to avoid the black hole path.

Another complication here is the age of Katie.  She is a smart, beautiful young woman with a mind of her own. She knows what she is facing and knows what it means to be treated for cancer.  She knows. She has been there.  She is not willing to give them carte blanch this time.  She does not want to feel pukie for the next 5 years. She want the ability to live life as much as possible.  We applaud her for that and hope to be able to add some good things to that life. 

Just for the record, the home made dream catcher is working.  I even had a dream with Dad in it... Something I have not had on a regular basis.  Sort of nice.  He thinks mom needs a new Subaru. 

 Now I need to deal with real life.... I wonder what a "Bad things keep happening to people we love" catcher looks like... 

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