Rightwood Update

My mom had a billion tests last week to measure how her treatments were working. And the results are in.

Drumroll please…

1. It was determined that she did not actually have a stroke. All of her symptoms were caused by a bone spur in her shoulder. I’m not sure what a bone spur is, but it’s definitely better than a stroke.

2. All of her tumor markers went down. Again, even after asking my mom, I’m still not sure what a tumor marker is, but I can assure you this is a very good thing.

3. The tumors in her chest and abdomen have not progressed. Halt, bitches!

4. The tumor in her left hip has shrunk. The tumor in her right hip has disappeared. That’s right, I said disappeared.

The only thing that’s not under control yet is the skin cancer, but the doctor’s are not as concerned about that because it’s not life threatening. The next course of action is to do two rounds of chemo pills (to hopefully get that skin cancer busted up) and then go back to the hormone treatments.

How am I feeling right now? Grateful. Grateful to all you for your thoughts and prayers. Grateful to my mom for being such a fighter. And grateful that we got this wonderful news just before Christmas. I couldn’t have dreamed-up a better Christmas present.

Calling All Thoughts, Prayers and Other Niceties

I got a call from my mom today at 5 p.m. sharp. I knew a phone call at the exact minute I was due to leave work could only be bad news. Unfortunately, I was right.

My mother’s cancer is back. Bam! That tricky-slick disease totally sucker punched us.

We don’t know what stage the cancer is in. We don’t know how good or bad the prognosis is. We don’t know anything, really. She has a PET scan tomorrow to determine all of these things. We’re hoping to have answers within 24 hours of the test.

For now, we wait. Speaking as someone who has gone through this before, my mother says this initial waiting is the hardest part.

While we are waiting, I would love it if you all could keep her in your thoughts. If you’re the praying kind, those would be great, too.┬áIf her cancer is local, we’re golden. Chances are she’ll need surgery and then she’s all set. No further action required. If it’s not local, well, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

So, please, keep your fingers, thoughts and prayers crossed that we hear that magic word…local.

My mother survived her last round of cancer like a champ, managing to maintain a level of optimism and grace along the way that was inspiring. She is feisty, stubborn and incorrigible. If you try to tell her no, forget about it. You do not, and I repeat, do not, want to mess with her. Quite frankly, I’m surprised Mr. Cancer dared show his face around her again. Clearly, he must be a little slow on the uptake.

My mother told me tonight that she’ll be fine. You may not know this about her, but she is always right. My father and I often acknowledge this fact by calling her Mrs. Rightwood. So listen, if Rightwood says she’s going to be fine, then she will be. End of story.

But I bet she’d still like to know that you have her back. Send some positive energy her way. It would mean more to her (and me) than you’ll ever know.