I Love My Mom

The facts

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In March, my Mom was diagnosed with liver cancer. In April, doctors removed the tumor and most of her liver and this summer she began chemotherapy.

At the time, the prognosis was good. The tumor was large but hadn’t spread and it was completely removed. We were looking at a future of years.

In August, we learned that there was another tumor in the liver and a metastatic tumor in one of the lymph nodes. The future would now be measured in weeks and months. If Mom’s body tolerated the chemo well, we could see 8-24 more months. If she didn’t do chemo we could see 2-16 more weeks with her.

Mom’s body has not tolerated chemo see well. It’s put her in the hospital and brought her to death’s door twice. She will not receive any further chemo treatments and, unless God wills it otherwise, the tumors will soon begin growing again. The end of Mom’s story on Earth is drawing to a close and we are now looking at a story with just a few weeks and days left to write.

Kindness

Mom’s days are few and we, her family, want them to be as happy as possible. Because of this, we watch a lot of Christmas movies with her and talk of happy times. Tonight we’ll have a family Christmas party and celebrate her birthday (which is tomorrow). Our conversations are about happy topics, we’ve all had enough sadness and uncertainty during this last week.

Oddly enough, some of the visitors that have come to visit Mom, haven’t really done the same thing. There’s been gossip about the horrible things that this person or that person said. There’s been horror stories about medication mixups and advice on buying new beds. These conversations have resulted in anxiety and mental anguish, surely not what the visitor meant to leave behind when they left.

So instead of last night being a peaceful evening, it was first an evening of abject terror as I gave mom the very medication which, “nearly killed my friend.” I had to reassure her that I wasn’t trying to kill her. I had to reassure her that the gossip from earlier in the day didn’t matter and that, for now, the very comfortable hospital bed that she was in was the best place for her.

Thankfully, mom loves and trusts me and all of her children and as I reminded her of that, her fears calmed, we found her some soothing Christmas music to listen to and she slept for nearly 10 hours.

Why do I share this today? I want to make sure that the facts are known in no uncertain terms. And just to encourage each of us to be a little more thoughtful when we’re tempted to share the misery and gossip in our lives instead of the joy and happiness.

Jai Bhagwan

Photos of Mom’s Journey:
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