Brigid here -- thank you all so much for the love.
I've been a bit overwhelmed, but am holding it together. David and I cut our Switzerland/Austria trip a little short because we felt weird being away for so long. I'm glad we did because I went straight to visit Mom after getting off the plane -- and found her miserable in much pain in bed. She'd been to the pool the day before and had eaten, but she seemed to be declining quickly. David and I worked and cleaned (with help from Wendy, thank you!) to clear out her dining room and make a first floor bedroom.
With your donations (THANK YOU) we were able to buy her an adjustable bedframe, so that she can avoid a hospital bed right now. Hospice will provide a twin hospital bed, but we wanted to be able to keep Patsy and Kenny together (because he's undergoing treatment and it's better for them to be able to rest together) -- and also so I and the babies could lie down and snuggle with Mom. The bed is in downstairs, and Mom has spent most of her time in it. She scared us last week -- going from August 10 to August 18 without eating. She was conscious and able to laugh and have conversations, but she had no interest in food. Then on Saturday morning the 18th, she ate 2 eggs and toast. And on Sunday she ate a doughnut -- and I'm pretty sure she ate another doughnut this morning, but it was consumed so quickly that I missed it :) I had spent last week calling nurses and working with them to change her medications. The Hospice nurses seem to have her pain under control now.
The best thing about her downstairs bedroom is that it makes it easy for her to have visitors. She often *says* she doesn't want visitors, but then I see her eyes sparkle when they come and she ends up seeming refreshed, even though it's also tiring. She's a social person, and I think visits are good for her.
Kenny finished his last day of radiation today, and he got to ring the loud bell and everyone clapped and cheered and he got a funny little certificate from UofL Cancer Center that no one wants to achieve. He brought a huge tray of cookies to the radiation team because he's known for handing out treats. They've been great to him. Thank you to Melissa and Kevin and everyone who has given Dad a ride to or from treatment (his were daily treatments, so it was a lot of back and forth to Brown Cancer Center) and to those who donated Uber gift certificates so he didn't have to drive all the time. He is starting to have some side effects from the radiation that make it even more difficult for him to eat -- but mostly, he is very tired.
Now we wait 4-7 weeks, have some consults and scans, etc, to plan for Kenny's surgery. The radiation and chemo should be shrinking that tumor so that surgery is less invasive. The timing of the surgery is a delicate thing, and we'll defer to doctors on that, of course.
David (my husband) is back to traveling 4-5 days a week, and his current assignment is in San Francisco. He doesn't normally travel that far, but so it goes this time. I feel bad for him, as he's been a rock, holding everything together, making uncomfortable phone calls to Hospice, and listening to me when I behave like a crazy person -- and now he's traveling thousands of miles, shifting time zones, and feeling guilty that he can't be with us all the time.
Graham started kindergarten at Bloom, and he loves it! Angus is home with a babysitter while I'm working or with my parents. I'm still gigging a ton (can't lose that income!), which is good and distracting. It's a lot of private parties and corporate events rather than club dates.
I'm holding it together, and I can't thank you all enough for the meals. I started this site for my parents, but it turns out it's me who is having difficulty sorting dinners and meal planning and even getting to the grocery. Knowing that a friend was bringing dinner to me and the boys tonight meant that I was able to spend time with my parents today between my own work and do some things for them, like, laundry, Rx-picking-up, cleaning, etc. for them.
Enjoy this photo of Mom and Angus napping together in the new adjustable bed.