or, the post i meant to make six months ago.
update 12/05/12: my mom passed away on may 12, 2012. it’s been now seven months, seven incredibly hard months and i miss her terribly. i am spending most of my time on my father and my sister, as we cope with the loss together, and at the same time i’m staying busy at work, with more projects, which is helping me deal a lot. therefore, i spend little (regular) time on tumblr, although i’m always here for my favorite fandom things (downton, jesse, marion, homeland etc.) and to keep in touch with you guys. if you decide to unfollow that is totally fine, i hope you enjoyed the randomness of my blog while you were here. if you decide to stay then yay!, i will still be around and hopefully we can share fun times forevermore. :)
previous post follows:
you may or may not have noticed that i’ve been increasingly absent from tumblr. i tried to stay in touch with many of you, but it’s not easy when you’re not around a lot, and i think most people probably… forgot about me? i certainly had a lot of people unfollow me (don’t know who exactly, hopefully not people i consider friends). i kept logging on though, because it turns out tumblr is fantastic to get your mind off things, even when you barely have free time and only go online for ten minutes while you’re at work.
six months ago today, the 23rd of november, my mom was admitted to a public hospital to have surgery. she had started having abdominal pain in late october and she had a series of scans, which showed a mass in her bladder, and some suspicious shadows in her liver. she did have surgery and the malignant tumor in her bladder was mostly removed. she had also felt a minor lump in her breast, but the mammography came back clear, and was tested by several doctors who said it was nothing, probably swollen glands due to her age (she’s 60).
here’s what “nothing” was: triple-negative breast cancer that had spread to her liver. of course, it took a month and switching to a private hospital to figure that out, because the doctors at the first hospital denied that there even was breast cancer to begin with. the malignancy in her bladder was an entirely separate incidence of cancer. she began chemotherapy on january 3rd, three weeks per month. she had increasingly extreme back pain, and in february the scans showed that a bone metastasis had occured. she began a round of radiotherapy, which affected her a lot and made her pretty weak. in march, she had a head MRI which showed that the cancer had metastasized to her brain. second round of radiotherapy. gradually she lost functionality of her legs (due to the tumors in her spine, apparently), she lost her inner strength (she was a very strong person, and she retained her courage until the bone metastasis), she lost her appetite and she largely lost her personality - i mean that she stopped being herself, she stopped laughing, no matter how hard we try (and we try really hard) most of the time she’s just someone who is in a terrible amount of pain and only cares about that.
i understand that this happens to many, many people, but it still feels so unfair. sometimes you have people who don’t know how good they have it, they whine and complain and don’t appreciate what they have until something happens and they realize how ungrateful they’d been. not us. me as a person and my family as a whole, we knew we were lucky and we were grateful and appreciative of that. we didn’t need a reminder that what matters in life is life. we knew. we didn’t have to have this happen to us. no matter what happened in my personal life or work or whatever, i didn’t let it really get to me because i knew that being healthy was all - and the rest can always be fixed, can always get better. i was always happy to have had a great childhood and a great home and a great sister and two great parents. it’s not that we didn’t fight. sometimes we did, over things that i now know were incredibly stupid and wish that i could take back but can’t. even so - no matter what, when i got home i felt instantly safe. now home is this place where my mom either sleeps or cries in pain, my dad is an inch away from falling apart because he’s been with my mom thirty five years and they were partners in everything and it’s killing him to see her like this, and my sister and i hold on to each other and try to get through this because we know what’s on the other side.
my mom is getting admitted to the hospital again, tomorrow morning. she took a turn for the worse last friday - and her doctor hasn’t said it, but i think she’s going there to die. my resolve crumbled today and i got her cellphone, which she hasn’t used in months, and read her sent messages, mostly texts to my sister and me. there’s 35 of them, i used to delete them for her every now and then to clear memory space, and now i wish i hadn’t because if there were more texts there would be more of her like she used to be. i’m struggling to remember what she was like when she laughed out loud and when she cooked and when she spoke in something other than a whisper, and find that sometimes it’s almost impossible. still my favorite thing to imagine (remember) is her appearing at the door of my room and waking me up in the morning in sing-song and smiling at me like there’s nothing wrong.
so this is now an official announcement of my semi-hiatus (which has been going on for a while, really). you’ll see me around probably (if i get to go to my office, i’ll probably log in), but mostly i’ll be somewhere holding my hands together and wishing that my mom gets to live a little bit longer.
funnily enough, the little i’ve been on tumblr has helped enormously. and i made a conscious decision to read the hunger games in mid-march and then immediately watch the movie, and it helped me tremendously. not that it took away from time spent with my mom and family, but getting immersed in a world like that and thinking about my favorite moment/scene/character/whatever while going to work or before falling asleep (instead of, say, crying), really truly helped. even tonight, on my worst moment yet, i went to my dash after my mom fell asleep and the night nurse came, and smiled at tags and smiled at seeing your usernames and your posts, and it helped. if you’ve made it this far in reading this post, then i salute you, and i thank you.