Friday, 27 November 2009

Is it only the 27th? When's December already?!

So this post is mostly about waiting. Again. Thrilling, I know. Ended up flying back into London a little bit early for personal reasons, so now I am waiting in London on my own. Which makes things feel both normal and bizarre, seeing that I am out of the loop. It scares me how much out of the loop a person can be, as illustrated by my brother last night. We were chatting and he said, "I don't know where I need to pack for or where I will be next week. After all, they could say that he's doing really well and to come back in a month for more chemo and then he will just bugger off to thailand". Stunned, I said "Um, no, there is less than an iota of a chance that Thailand is anywhere in the realm of possibility". It's weird, because he knows much more about stuff like the Whipple Procedure (the surgery that is sometimes done on pancreatic tumours) but didn't seem to realise that if you leave this tumour alone for a month, it could treble in size and kill my father.

My grandmother is recovering from her back injury and her life is almost back to normal. However, we have a new war injury, namely my mother, who fell off the pavement and hit her head and wrist. She needed stitches in her forehead and is wearing a sling. God knows if it's broken, but she will get it checked out in Houston. I feel irrationally guilty, as if, if I had been there, this would not have happened. I don't need to be told it's not my fault, but sometimes you feel it anyway.

The reason updates have been thin on the ground is that nothing much has happened. We are all just waiting. It's been almost two weeks since my dad's last chemo. He is feeling good enough to walk to work (I walked with him and it takes about 40 mins) and stay at work all day. He also felt well enough to travel, alone, to an overnight meeting in Bucharest and came back tired but chirpy. It's all too good to be true. I feel like we are setting ourselves up for a fall, because it can't possibly be SO GOOD. I am worried that, come the 1st December, we will find out that the cancer has spread everywhere and that he may feel well, but he has 2 months, tops.

I know he has had the best possible care (most of the time) but, after all, he was staged as 4, and that's not a funny staging. It would be insane to allow yourself to believe that just the chemo has done the trick, right? Chemo doesn't do that with the pancreas. But maybe I have heard just the horror stories. However, in the UK in 2005, there were 7,632 cases of Pancreatic Cancer. There were also 7,288 deaths from Pancreatic Cancer. And my father is flying off to Romania. What? I mean, WHAT?!

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