Meanwhile, my dearly beloved, Will, has had a whole batch of good days since he’s been able to eat again. He’s regained much of his energy and strength, and while he isn’t the same man he was a couple of years ago, he’s still SICK for Pete’s sake! We can never forget completely that he has stage IV pancreatic cancer……but you’d never know it to look at him these days.
The weight loss has stopped. His blood sugar fluctuations are under control. He’s not in pain, and there hasn’t been any vomiting in weeks. Even the constipation is resolved. He still looks scrawny in the neck area, but no longer as gaunt, and his affect is no longer flat. Best of all, he’s gotten back to LIVING again, and he’s not going to let a little cancer get in the way of his plans.
What a difference a few weeks (and regular meals and bowel movements) can make! In early August, we both thought for sure that he was on his way out…..he was so weak he could barely walk, couldn’t eat or drink without barfing, and drifted in and out of consciousness in between bathroom visits. In late August, he presided over the art and air show exhibit just like he always has—although other members of the modelers’ club did the lion’s share of the work for a change—and he even made a couple hundred bucks from selling off some of his model kits.
Today, he spent about four hours cleaning out the man cave and getting rid of a bunch of miscellaneous “junk” that he’s had for ages (the man is a pack-rat!) while I was rearranging and cleaning the living room. The fact that he has enough energy to do this belies the severity of illness to the point where I have to wonder if he really IS as sick as they think. I don’t want to be a Pollyanna about all this, but he just doesn’t act like you’d expect a terminally ill man to act.
Who says God doesn’t hear our prayers?
Yes, this all could merely be the calm before the storm. Yes, he has yet to start the oral chemotherapy that could make him feel like crap again. The point is, we’ve had a reprieve from the overwhelming fear, to say nothing of the feeling of impending doom, and this time is allowing us to enjoy each other even as we prepare for whatever may come. There’s no doubt that there is a shadow over us as we go about our daily lives, but it’s only a faint one….and in the meantime, we live in the moment, even as we talk of the upcoming holidays and beyond.
We have no idea what the future holds, and for once I’m glad that I can’t look ahead and see what will happen because I might see something sad, and I don’t want to ruin the joy of today for a glimpse of tomorrow. Besides, our doctor and hospital bills are already running in the tens of thousands of dollars, and there is no end in sight; I don’t want to know ahead of time if we’re going to wind up living in a cardboard box behind a strip mall.
Speaking of finances: we’ve already resigned ourselves to the fact that we’re going to be impoverished for the rest of our lives. But what can we do? Might as well make the best of what we do have and not worry about it….we’ve been poor before, and we stuck together (literally) through thick and thin. We can do it again.
And it’s certainly looking like we’ll have to. If there’s such a thing as a negative credit rating, we’re probably at minus-532. The only thing we’ve got going for us financially is that the car is only $300-and-change away from being paid off, and that’s going to happen within the next month.
Otherwise, it’s like shoveling shit against the tide: we know we’re going to be swamped and eventually drown, but at least we’re not going down without a fight!