It has been a few days…and the blog has taken a back seat. I want to always update, write, vent, let go…but there are other things that have occupied my time and my mind this weekend…understandably so. We have had constant visitors from family and friends here in Indiana and a few from out of town. It was good to have everyone gathered in support of what John is going through right now.
John has changed a lot since arriving in Indiana two weeks ago. He is continuing to lose weight even though we try to stay on top of his eating habits. He is not as hungry as he used to be. The oncologist here prescribed steroids last week and slowly we are seeing his appetite rise…slightly. I am constantly asking him if he wants toast, jello, ice cream…anything to balance the array of medicines he has to put in his body to keep him comfortable. Though he does not always feel nauseous, he throws up often. It has been a chore for him to keep nutrition down no matter how many times we take nausea medicine. John has always had shaky hands and now it is more evident. Anything he picks up is hard to handle and usually falls from his grasp. The evident frustration with himself is hard to watch. He finds himself dazing in and out of consciousness/daydreaming thinking it is real life and starts to talk about them like it just happened. Bringing him back to reality is difficult because he then realizes what he just discussed is not really happening…and he becomes disheartened. It is hard on him. It is hard on us to watch. He feels like he is losing his memory and short term occurrences and to him, some never happened. His moans and twitches in his slumber are becoming more frequent and he speaks often of his family and friends in his discussions as he sleeps. He points, runs, talks, laughs, sighs, cries out, sweats and shakes all in his sleep. This process is exhausting for him because he usually wakes himself up when he jerks too hard and hurts his left side. I feel every movement he makes and hear every sound he cries every night and am right there with him…to comfort him when he wakes feeling hurt or sick to his stomach after an awakening jolt. We are both tired.
He has always said “thank you” throughout this journey…and lately, it is more often. I continually thank him in return. He has fought so hard and his body seems to want to give out on him but his heart and mind do not. Today was difficult…John spit out blood. This is the first time this has ever happened. I realized it when I looked in his spit cup that sits next to him on the night stand. I turned to him and asked, “Baby…is this blood?” He looked at me and said, “I think so…it has been red like that all day.” It sent chills down my spine. Since the start of chemo, John has always had a large mucus build up in his lungs and it increasingly became worse with the fluid drainage followed by the expansion of his lungs. Never has it been deep red like this and never was it blood. Even with this…all the draining…all the blood loss…his hemoglobin is still holding at 10.1. This morning we went to see if he needed a transfusion and found out he did not. It is dipping slowly, but definitely not as fast (every other day was a transfusion) as it was in the hospital just two short weeks ago.
The dark cloud is looming. My thoughts are all over the place. Some days I feel as though I can conquer the world and be a strong wife to my ailing husband and others, I feel like crawling in a hole and screaming my head off. What dream am I in? More like…what nightmare? There is the never ending thoughts of what things will look like when he is gone…what the following weeks will look like as we continue to fight…or how can I just save him from all this and celebrate some sort of miracle. I am praying I do not lose him before he is gone…I keep telling him not to forget me or my voice when his mind starts to slip further away from me whether if it is from the cocktail of medicines or the cancer taking over. My heart breaks as I look into his eyes and see his hurt and knowledge of leaving. His love is as big as his beautiful spirit and I know he is trying…I know there are so many with us still trying. All of us have our hands on John and we are lifting him up. It makes me sick to actually feel my heart breaking a little each day as I miss him so much already. We are weary and battered my friends…thank you for your continued support and prayers. We continue to fight even though there are no more medical options for John…we just continue.