Thursday, October 24, 2013

Tears/Laughter, Faint Heart/Happy Heart.

WHAT a day this was.  Part of it was AWful and part of it was WONDERful.  Amazing that my heart has survived this whirlwind of emotion.

I made you a video this morning, but it turned out half-blurred.  I guess I was too far away from the camera, and I moved around so much, the camera had a shutter attack or something.  It is just a little Sony Cyber-shot camera.

The day started out by the phone ringing.  It was the doctor's office saying they wanted to see Jerry at 1:00 instead of 3:00 today.  I was thrilled about that.  Let's get this show on the road!

I wanted to MAKE SURE they had what they needed from ER, so I ASKED the guy:  Do you have everything you need from Baptist ER.  "YES", he said.  It is right here.

We went to get a burger for lunch, which Jerry ate without incident.  Then we headed to meet the doctor.  We arrived early and signed in.  In a few moments the nurse opened the door and said "Jerry?".  We walked over to her, and she asked the question that set off the Joy-fuse.  "Do you have the disk?"  I told her they already had it, and that I had verified it when the guy called this morning.  She said they had only the paperwork.  They had no disk.

THEN she said that she had told Jerry when they called him earlier this week that he needed to get the disk from Baptist.  That, of course, shed light on the whole problem.  You don't tell Jerry.  You tell ME!

We had to leave Mercy and drive all the way to Baptist hospital.  We had to go to the Radiology Lab on the 2nd floor and wait for the disk to be delivered.  They copied Jerry's license and made him sign something, and we were off again to Mercy to the doctor.

We arrived back there at 1:45, which was amazing.  I couldn't believe it hadn't taken longer.  The door opened, and the nurse called us back to the exam room.  GREAT, I thought.  We are still going to get right in.

WRONG!!!  We waited one and a half hours in that exam room.  At one hour, I opened the door and stuck my head out.  The nurse was at a desk in the hallway.  I told her we had been in there an hour and asked if it was going to be much longer.  "He will be in in a few minutes", she snapped.  Thirty minutes later, he arrived.  I was in tears by then and it was obvious.  I think it is SO RUDE of those places to just shut you in a room and not communicate with you.  We would have been much more comfortable out in the big waiting room with magazines, a bathroom and a pot of coffee.

ANYWAY.  Dr. Ellis finally came in.  He was a very monotone, soft spoken type.  He had no reaction at all to any of the paperwork or the disk.  I even asked him if he had seen them.  If a bomb blew him off his little stool with the spinning round seat, he wouldn't have blinked.  I, of course, looked like a bomb had already hit me somewhere.  I was all sniffy and emotional from the long wait.  He asked a few questions like "Does it hurt?"  "When did you first notice pain?"  "Have you had cancer before?"

I blurted out, "DID YOU SEE THE DISK?"  He did.  I asked what he thought about it.  He said Jerry's spleen was swollen.  He didn't even mention the lesions in it at first.    We asked him most of the questions.  I asked if he saw the lesions.  He said there were some.  He acted like he might yawn and fall asleep any second.  From what I can remember from his very non-emotional responses, this is the deal:

Jerry MAY or MAY NOT have Lymphoma.  Jerry MAY or MAY NOT have to have his spleen removed.  The lesions in Jerry's spleen MAY or MAY not require chemotherapy.  Jerry's spleen will NOT explode unless he is in a wreck or has a hard impact in which case any spleen could explode.  Jerry will be scheduled to have a Pet Scan so the doctor can see all of his organs.  Jerry will also have to have a colonoscopy.  All of that will be next week.  We will see the doc again next Thursday to go over the results.  Between now and then the doc will talk to his Oncology doctor buds to see what they all think.

Honestly, he was a very nice -- very knowledgeable doctor.  Jerry liked him a lot.  Much like Jerry's temperament.  I am the type to REACT immediately and then think about all the things I said wrong and wish I had done differently.  Jerry will interview everyone involved and their next door neighbor, and six months later, you MIGHT get a response out of him.  By then nobody can remember what the discussion was about to start with!

Opposites do attract, you know!

For some reason, as unfinal as that all was, I feel so RELIEVED.  I feel like my husband is going to live to be a very old man with this very hyperactive old lady.  I won't have to do payroll.  I won't have to figure out how to handle all of our investments.  I won't have to figure out how to sell his bulldozer and his tractor and unload the hundreds of old wheelchairs and other medical equipment out of his big, blue barn.

I won't have to do anything but love him, keep on sewing and keep on making jewelry.  YAY!

That was good, but that wasn't the Laughing, Happy Heart part, although a VERY heavy load has been lifted from my heart.  There is a lot of hope tonight instead of dread fear of the unknown.

The happy part was when we went to visit Mom at the Hospice Home.  She had just had a bath and her hair was washed.  She was in fresh bedding and a clean gown.  Jerry and I walked into her room.  I was on one side of her bed and Jerry was on the other side.  I started stroking her forehead and holding her hand.  Her blue eyes POPPED wide open.  She looked at me, and then she looked at Jerry.  I said, "Mom, Jerry and I are here to see you.  Do you know who we are."  She looked at us and made a sound while lifting her other arm up near her face.  I knew she realized who we were and that we were there.  I started talking about how nice she looked -- how pretty her blue eyes are -- how nice her hair looked with a relaxed perm and hair dye.  I told her she smelled really good and her bed was so fresh and clean.  She kept trying to talk, but couldn't.  Her upper teeth are dentures, and they are here in a container.  I asked her if she would like to have her teeth.

At one point I said:

"Mom, you should get a GOLD MEDAL for having the MOST broken bones."

She started GIGGLING out loud.

WOW!  I was SO EXCITED.  I texted Jeannie.  Jeannie was so excited, she called me for more details.  It was really wonderful.  She was really "back with us" for a short time.

I asked Jerry to turn on TV Land on the television hanging from her ceiling.  Mom watched TV Land 24/7 even before she had dementia.  She slept with it on all night long.  She has to have seen every episode of Bonanza and Gunsmoke a million times.

In case you can't tell, that cartoon is supposed to be Ben Cartwright from Bonanza.  LOL

Jerry and I used to kid her about how many times she must have seen what she was watching and she would say, "This is the FIRST TIME I've ever seen this!"

We stayed for 2 hours and enjoyed her sitting up in bed and almost watching TV with us.  She fell back into a deep sleep before we left.  It was such a blessing to share that time with her.

That's it folks.  TV time.  Jerry still hasn't figured out how to get the sound back so we can watch Amazon or Netflix, so we are stuck watching Fox News.  I am to the point where I don't want to hear ANY NEWS.  I just want to hear "happy".  I don't think there is any of that on TV these days.

I better get.

Hugs, Joy


  1. Thank you for the update from the doctors office visit. I will pray for Jerry, his Mom and you.

  2. Joy, I understand ALL that you and Jerry have been going thru, your mom, and Jerry's health......I went thru all the obstacles and heartache that you are experiencing at this time . I am glad that Jerry is sensing the Lord's hand in all of this, as you are. My thoughts on the medical community completely changed as we went thru our trial with my late husband cancer, it was so haphazard, the tests, the radiation treatments, that shouldn't have been ordered, an oncologist, (that has since left town) that was , to us, not affected by our circumstances......I, as you had and have to be involved, or things could and can get really screwed up. I had to be on the top of things all the time! So stick with what you are doing and be are saving Jerry's life. I pray for you daily, as I relive my experience, and know the stress you are going thru now...God bless the two of you and give you the peace He only can give.

  3. It's very true...fear of the unknown is far worse than knowing what the problem is. Thank you for taking the time to post tonight!!! I will continue to pray for you and Jerry.

  4. Those scenes you describe with Jerry's Mom bring
    back all the painful and melancholy memories of
    the emotional rollercoaster that was the time I spent
    with my dear Mom the last 3 wks of her days on and mostly out sleeping, loss of appetite,
    and my horror at the suggestions of removing fluids
    which was eventually substantiated by the swelling
    of her hands.

    I vehemently rejected depriving her of nourishment.
    My acceptance was finally cemented when I read an
    article that was eye opening to me about how these
    bodies ..God's miraculous creation.. react in the final
    stages of life. When that time comes, the gradual
    slowing down of all the functions including the loss of
    appetite and inability to even sustain nourishment
    occurs. As I thought more about it, it gave me some
    small comfort, knowing that indeed God would have
    a plan for stage of our lives.

    It's all sad and heartbreaking I know, Joy, but the
    wonderful things you're doing are being there with
    her, looking after her care, tenderly talking to her,
    holding her hand, giving her the comfort of your
    love for her. You've both been so wonderful and
    so devoted, and you'll always have that peace of
    mind that you truly did all you could when you
    were most needed. To me that was the most
    important thing: being there for her. I would
    never think of letting my Mom die alone if I
    could help it, and she didn't. I will always be
    so grateful that I was there, even if she didn't
    know .. I did, and God did.

    And here you are with such worries about
    Jerry's health and the stress caused by all
    the hospital and doctor confusions and the
    unknown at the very same time. This is the
    time to be kind to each other. I admire
    yours and Jerry's strong faith, and I know
    God will carry you through all that's on your
    plate right now. May He be with Jerry's
    dear Mom and you all in the coming days,
    and give Jerry healing and renewed health.
    God bless you all.


  5. Thank you so much for your comment, Joy! Phylly has been through all of this with her Mother too, and she has been an enormous help to me. I appreciate you telling me about your experience. I remember my Father saying about his Mom: "They STARVED her to death!" Now, I understand what he was talking about. It is a natural transition from her to Heaven.
    Hugs, Joy


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Hugs, Joy