Last year around this time was rough. My Mom was diagnosed with a very rare type of cancer called Merkell Cell Carcinoma in Nov 06. It started out as a simple "pimple-like" dot under her right eye that was growing slowly - and after being diagnosed as a "fatty cyst" by her regular doctor (who went on maternity leave Thank God!) she found out what it REALLY was after a biopsy by a different doctor who realized this "could" be something else. The "C" word was introduced into our lives like a thunderbolt. You're never ready for it and I think I was living in a bubble thinking we'd always be okay. What made it more scary is that this is so rare, and so dangerous. The surgeon told my brother that she could possibly not make it thru the surgery. Very scary stuff indeed.
My big brother, who lives in the same city as her, was the brave one that took her to the 12 hour surgery in another city in Dec 06 to remove the cancer, and to all 25 rounds of radiation treatments in Jan and Feb 07. (I think it says a lot that my Mom was able to be released from such a long, scary surgery after only two days. She was blessed with awesome doctors all the way thru this ordeal. This was a springboard for Hope I believe. God is Good.) I wanted to be of some help as well so I flew home alone last April (I'm the "biggest chicken" about flying!) and stayed until August. I'm also "the Biggest chicken" and the MOST "non-nurse" type person out there -trust me - I am NOT the one you want around in an emergency -so to be honest Mom took care of me more than I did her. But I was able to be there as she was beginning her rounds of chemo AND going thru a major stomach surgery that wasn't related to the cancer.
We got thru it with lots of prayers from many loving people, and we had some awesome doctors move for her good in this ordeal. The chemo did scare me something awful. I only pictured what I saw in the movies and was surprised to see a room full of people eating, watching TV, and visiting while hooked up. I know it's not pleasant side effect wise, but Mom was awesome. She even let me boss her around when I made her ride in a wheelchair once in awhile because the chemo would tire her out. She wouldn't always admit it, but I could imagine it's effects even when she didn't show them all the time. I only crashed into the elevator doors a few times, and almost ran over a few people too, oops! We always had lots of laughs and she was on anti-nausea meds thankfully while I whisked her around. Of course, I knit while she was hooked up during the sessions. I can't remember all that I got done, but I think it was a few pairs of socks and some gauntlets. For a tough time, we made the most of it and actually had lots of laughs.
She's healing every day now and goes to see her oncologist regularly. So far NO MORE C stuff. With this type of cancer there's no "test" to show it's back. She has to be on guard of any changes in her skin and the dr checks her thoroughly. She's had other health issues over the years like fibro, (which puts my whining to shame since she had no choice but to work thru hers as a single parent) but she's still as fiesty and independent as ever. I never think of my Mom as getting older- and SHE still keeps me going more than I help her. She got ME thru this tough time. Hands Down. Her ATTITUDE was always one of hope and healing. That made ALL the difference I truly believe. She's no weakling like I think I would've been. She's one tough cookie who's endured more than I EVER could in this lifetime.
What makes this Mother's Day special to me is that we have had our ups and downs over the years, but we've made peace and talk about everything now. It's taken a lot of growing up, listening, loving, praying, AND forgiving. But I'm so grateful that I still have time to tell her how much I love her and appreciate all she does for me. Last year was a blur, but this year I can reflect on how important she is to me.
If I ever grow up, I want to be just like my Mom. Oh yea, and all those things she told me when I was little (and older) that I said "yeah, yeah, yeah (eyes rolling)" ...you find with wisdom and time that your parents were usually right on the money. It only took me 40 years to realize that. Now that I have my own daughters, I work on reminding them of all we've endured thru the years, my Mom & I. I hope it carries over and we'll always have that closeness too.
Thanks Mom. For everything. We love you and Happy Mothers Day!!!
I was also blessed to get some luv this happy day. From The Big Guy: My favorite color of roses - not quite pink-not quite red. Just... "right".
And my absolute favorite - another Shabby Chic quilt. (I could never have enough linens). I have Rachel Ashwell shower curtains, sheets, duvets, and now (another) quilt. Luv, Luv, Luv them. I've been so good in the yarn diet dept, I may stick to it after all....
Happy Mothers Day to everyone.