I never thought of myself as someone who wouldn’t face facts before, or see the truth and accept it. I’m usually the pedantic one in the family making sure the facts are straight. Today we visited he oncologist. Since Julia is experiencing breakthrough pain and has had to increase her morphine (substitute) dose, it was time to get an update. Now the wedding is out of the way Ju wanted to consider the option mentioned previously of taking a chemo tablet.
The nurse attached to the ‘dishy’ oncologist went to some trouble to explain that a chemo tablet is not just one tablet. It may be a combination of three, taken twice a day for 14 days on, 14 days off. Since my daughter is now married, perhaps she didn’t lust after Dr.Dreamy any more, and as my niece is in a relationship, perhaps it caused a hiccup with her libido too, but both of them listened to the facts that the chemo may still affect Ju as the other did and damage her lungs. It probably will cause great tiredness, nausea and probably hair loss, not just for the day like the previous chemo did but for the full 14 days of taking it.
I was interested in finding out how far the tumour had grown since the last scan to gauge it’s rate of growth. I also wanted to find out, since Ju had mentioned it, whether the tumour had been the cause of the blockage in the bile duct that caused the yellow jaundice last month. If not, could the pain be down to the stent she had fitted rather than the cancer. I was told it didn’t matter over much since the tumour has grown and is growing and is the cause of the problems. Julia made a decision threre and then to go for quality of life over quantity. I think we all understood and applauded that choice though Dr. Dreamboat made sure he told her we needn’t rule the chemo tablet out just yet.
We all left the room and Julia was whisked away to complete a questionnaire so the rest of us went to sit in the tea bar and wait. Yvonne has often said that we each seem to hear a different thing when we’re in with the good Doc and come out with different thoughts. She was of the opinion that the Doc had been great and told Ju the truth and that the cancer had spread. I differed, not thinking he’d actually told her that in so many words and I was disappointed that there wasn’t going to be a new scan to show where the tumour was as Ju and I had talked about before. I’d hoped maybe if it was the cancer causing the pain we might get some more pain carrying nerves cut. I shouldn’t want to know that. My niece( The wonderful Karen) thought maybe I was looking for a timescale to work to, which I suppose it may have sounded like. Things got heated and for the first time in many a year I lost my temper, I can’t remember the last time I shouted at Yvonne, though I didn’t technically shout ( there’s me being pedantic again).
Julia is dying. I don’t want to face that fact but being the anal person I am, I wanted things neatly tied up in a bow. I like facts as they help me think things through. But maybe the girls are right and Julia and I don’t need to know where the cancer is now, how far it spread in 3 months or whatever and at what rate is it growing. I’m pretty sure she couldn’t have another operation to cut nerve endings, and if we saw a large tumour there’s always the thought that Julia cold panic and just give in. I just need to accept I’ve got her as long as I’ve got her and keep her as positive as possible mentally. Maybe we can keep creating targets like we did with the wedding. I’ll have to speak to Yvonne about getting pregnant……..