Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A quick update on my mom

A few weeks back my mom called me, and when I asked what was up she happily replied with,


All I could do was stare at the kitchen counter and verbalize my confusion. Because HOW. It's not like I was out of touch with her or anything; I would talk to her and hear the fatigue in her voice on a regular basis. She always sounded so beat down (just like my dad did), and would give me updates about where she was at with her treatment plan(s). One of my cousins even called me to say that my mom was starting to look sick thanks to very sudden weight loss. So, again, HOW.

Well. It turns out that her Stage 4 breast cancer was separate from what was actually Stage 1 lung cancer. The doctor(s) labelled her as Stage 4 when they mistakenly thought what was in her breast and lymph nodes metastasized further into her lung. The mastectomy took care of what was in her breast and lymph nodes (Stage 3), which left the little bit inside of her lung to be taken care of -- which it was via the non-invasive procedure I briefly mentioned the last time I wrote about her sickness.

Did that come out right? Because writing is hard.

tl;dr instead of one mega cancer she had two different cancers at the same time (one of which was worse than the other).

She is still undergoing chemotherapy (had her first round today) to make sure that all of the cancerous cells are eradicated; I don't remember how long she'll have to do it though. Nevertheless, it looks like she'll be sticking around longer than anyone previously thought, so yay for that~ 


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

One year later

Exactly one year ago, I got an expected (but nonetheless devastating) series of phone calls, each one giving me progressively worse news until I was told that my father finally passed away peacefully, with my mother by his side.

Many things came to light in the wake of my father's death; secrets and lies that changed everyone's perception and left us all with questions that will never be answered. I always knew that he was dodgy at times, but the mess he left behind left me with a degree of resentment that will probably never go away. If I could talk to him I would say something like, "WHAT THE FUCK?!" before tearing into him.

(I'd also ask for his plantain recipe.)

Nevertheless, the fact remains that my dad is gone, and has been for a full 365 days: I didn't have to call him for Father's Day, or his birthday, and I didn't hear from him on mine. I can't bring myself to delete his number from my phone, and I have three voicemails that are incredibly trippy to listen to, as they go from healthy to a little under the weather to terminal in the span of a couple of minutes depending on the order in which they're listened to.

And, yet, adjusting to the new family dynamic hasn't been terribly difficult for me. I knew what was going to happen and I prepared for it early on. I'm actually really, really used to my dad's absence, even if I am being slightly weird and introspective today.

On the flip side, I wasn't really prepared for the slew of unknowns that came out after the fact. But there's nothing I can do except wonder about those goddamn plantains.