Archive for brain tumor

The Night Shift

Posted in Random Stuff with tags , , , , , , , on July 13, 2011 by brianestover

This is night number four in a row for me. The second night by myself. The first night by myself where Mom can die. I’ve had Jim or Georgia hanging out with me the last few nights.

I’m not going to lie, I’m scared. Scared that I’ll miss her going, scared that she might go without someone that loves her holding her hand and stroking her face. She needs to go though. Her NG tube was pulled over 5 days ago. She stopped breathing two nights ago for about 90 seconds. The two nurses working this side of the palliative care unit Jim and I all stood around. I asked for one of the nurses stethoscope. As she took it off her neck to hand to me Mom started breathing. Now it’s a regular pattern of breathing light then super compensating by breathing heavy followed by a short :10-:15 seconds where she doesn’t breathe at all. This has been going on for two days now. Jim, Georgia, Dad and I are all ragged from lack of consistent sleep. I’m glad my sister has the kids in and can’t pull long shifts here. But it’s going to be harder until Mom passes away because Jim and Georgia had to leave today.

The nursing staff in the palliative care unit have been great to the family, friends, co workers, people from church and from her life that have stopped by. There is a family lounge, I can walk around the entire unit barefooted, the rooms are equipped with a couch and a chair you can sleep on. There is a shower in each bathroom as well. They even let you drink beer up here. But now it’s all about Mom crossing the finish line.

The Worst News…Ever

Posted in Stuff with tags , , , on June 24, 2011 by brianestover

My Mom has a brain tumor. A glioblastoma or GBM. Historical cure rate 0%. Historical 5 year survival rate for her type and severity is 0%. Historial 3 year survival rate is 1%. Historical 1 year survival rate doesn’t even get above 30%.

This is a fast growing, aggressive tumor. She spends the last 3 years devoted to taking care of my grandfather who had cancer and my grandmother who has Alzheimer’s. Now, just as she was moving forward from his death and wrapping up his estate, bam, she ends up with what is the worst brain tumor one can have. My grandfather died from cancer in mid February, which is about the same time Mom’s tumor started it’s life. Call it an inheritance.