Thursday, April 19, 2012

Round Two

This time last year my grandfather was basically killing himself with chemo. In all honesty, I can't for the life of me remember why. I just remember many of us desperately wanted him to try any and all available therapies. We didn't want the oncologist to write him off because he was in his mid-eighties. He was still out mowing and working on his house and doing geophysical consulting.

Then on May 28th he mowed the lawn and was basically himself a bit before going in for his first (and last) treatment of Jevtana. The next day he couldn't get out of bed. I remember my father carrying him like a baby to the car. He was a week in the hospital. They released him to hospice and three weeks later the last gasp of wind was sucked out of our lungs when he died on June 18.

So it was a different story altogether when I told my grandmother today that I'd rather she had an enjoyable year and die at the end of it than suffer as my grandfather had for five years and die of the same thing at the end of that. Some chemo is just--ironically--overkill. Of course, the oncologist is sneaking in low doses of a cytotoxic chemo in pill form and she'd said she didn't want to go there. TO HIM. So why did he prescribe it? The world wants to know. She's going to ask about that.

It's round two. Here we are at the top of the roller coaster again. And rather than prepare to make this the most awesome ride ever, we've boarded with our pillows and blankies and are fairly asleep.

We just want the ride to be over. We know where it ends.

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