August 25th, 2006

(no subject)

I finally got a cellular modem card for my laptop so I can get online from the hospital. My signal is lame so it's slow but it gets the job done.

I talked to a second Oncologist today about her cancer. It's a Carcinoma - I think he said it was an adrenal carcinoma but I'm not sure. It's not due to anything she did to herself, it's just "bad luck".

It's in her lungs, but they think it spread there from somewhere else. It's not "lung cancer" per se - that's just where it became evident. It's all throughout her bronchial tubes. They said it's common to catch this kind of cancer at a very late stage because it grows silently for a long time and gives no indications. This kind of cancer does not readily respond to treatment and when it does, it responds very slowly, and time does not appear to be something she has much of. Everyone is urging us to get hospice care and get her home as soon as we can. I wish I had a better home to take her to.

Until today she was on a pain med that has a cumulative effect of making you confused. Last night she was so loopy that when she wasn't sleeping, she didn't know where she was or why. I told them to take her off that medication. Turns out they have to take her off it anyway in order to get her out of the Surgical ICU, which they did today. She's much more lucid and clear-headed today which is a relief. She still has some confusion, she's groggy and speaks slowly, and she's still hallucinating a bit, she sees bugs from time to time, but that's a hallucination she has had before all this, it's a result of her PTSD flaring up, so that might be the case here too - a lot of stress can have that effect on her.

Tandra wants to see as many people as possible. If you'd like to come visit, please do. We're at Wesley, in rm 332 in building 4. Don't bother calling ahead, I never know what's going on from one minute to the next so any time is as good as any other.

I spent most of the day on the phone talking to relatives and doctors. I don't have a lot of time to get online, obviously, and I have way more comments than I can respond to individually. I want you all to know that I am reading every single one and they all mean so much to me. And to Tandra. It's good to know we have so many really good friends out there. Thank you all so much.

The kids came down from Kansas City tonight, and a really good close friend of hers (averybadman24) flew in from Ohio. We sat around and talked about what kind of funeral she wanted. averybadman24 has been really good at talking about those kinds of things and still keeping it kind of light, where I'd just be a blubbering mess. I'm really glad he's here.

Tandra has thirty-something tattoos, I have none. I always thought if anything happened to her, I'd get one to celebrate her. I'm going artist shopping tomorrow but I don't know what the tattoo should be yet. I'm trying to brainstorm ideas. I want to make sure I like the design before I get it but I am going to make sure I have it quickly enough that she gets to see it.

This fucking sucks, by the way.

Ok, that's all I can think of that I was going to post about.

(no subject)

(Disclaimer: Apologies to my family members who have recently discovered this journal and who may think that I'm a great Christian like the rest of the family. It hasn't been that way for a long time. Sorry.)

I'm not ready to call it God, because I can't believe in a God that would allow this, much less one who has this as "part of his plan" (fuck that), but in the midst of this horrible dark time, there has been a clear sign that there is Something out there.

On bad news day number one, when I got to the hospital, my dad said he had spoken with the hospital social worker (Robyn). We knew we were getting bad news so he asked her to be there when they told us the news.

When Robyn walked in, she and Tandra greeted each other with "wow, it's good to see you again" type greetings. It turns out that Robyn was a counselor at a support group for teenagers - a group Tandra, averybadman24, and another of her close friends were all in 12 years ago. Tandra and Robyn remember each other. In fact Robyn told me that of the two or three hundred kids that came through that group, there were few she always remembered and two she always remembered by name, and Tandra is the first. (Tandra is unforgettable like that.) Tandra really likes Robyn too. It's just too much to be a coincidence. Robyn says its another example of "the universe taking care of us".

I figured I probably needed to talk to some kind of psychologist or counselor about this but I wasn't really sure what for, or what to say. Robyn and I sat and talked and not only was she really helpful, but I really like her. Like, a lot. Like, enough to keep in touch with her after all this is through.

Ten years ago when the girl I was dating died in a car accident, her aunt and I were pretty close for a while, but eventually lost touch. I feel like Robyn is that person this time around, and I don't want to let that relationship go again like I did last time.

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Christians and pray-ers: Please continue to pray and please don't be offended at my current position on things. Right now I believe that praying, meditating, sending good vibes, or whatever it is you do, if you truly believe in it, it's all the same thing - that energy really does flow through the universe. Plus, if praying is your thing, then it's as much for you as it is for us, and that's as it should be.

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I'm scared that even though I can't think of it, there might be some way this could possibly get worse.

(no subject)

One more thing tonight, then I'm going to bed.

I've been instructed to ask for help if I need it, and to accept help if it's offered, and I've been asked about a million times if there's anything anyone can do. I say I can't think of anything, and everything really is covered, except for finances.

I'm quite behind on my normal monthly bills, utilities and stuff. I was already behind before all this started, but it's worse now because I've hardly been home or had time to pay the bills and because it's not really at the top of the list of things I'm thinking about. On the other hand, if my cell phone gets cut off (it's very close), I'm in big trouble. I'm using it constantly.

Medical insurance pays 80% until our out-of-pocket reaches the $2000 deductible, at which point they start paying 100%. I would bet that our medical bills (before insurance) are probably ten times that. I don't know where all that will come from.

I thought I had a life insurance policy on Tandra, but I don't. My dad has said he will cover any final expenses, but that will be a loan I will need to pay back. I am one hundred percent okay with that, even if it takes me years to pay off, but anything to offset that will help.

And please don't be intimidated by the large numbers - four people sending $25 makes a big difference.

You can send "virtual cash" through paypal, and if you want, you can do it anonymously. If you don't want to do it anonymously, please include a note telling me who you are, as I can't always connect e-mail addresses to LJ names. You don't need a PayPal account to donate - a credit or debit card is okay. PayPal transactions are secure. I don't promise to be accountable for any money you send - I'll allocate it at my discretion. Hopefully you trust me to be responsible about it and realize I'm not really in the mood to blow it on video games and beer.

I'll put the link here and on my profile.