Family news….

I apologize or not writing much besides book-related posts and Friday’s Fave Fives. I have had other “stray thoughts,” but either not enough time to develop them, or if I’ve had time, I’ve kind of gone blank, even though I try to keep a running list of things to blog about as they occur to me. There have been a number of things going on behind the scenes…

Most recently, Jim’s mom has been in the hospital since Friday. The staff of her assisted living place said she was not eating, not talking, and unresponsive except to painful stimuli, plus her blood pressure was low, so they sent her to the ER. There they found her white blood cell count was pretty high plus she was dehydrated. She was being treated for a UTI with antibiotics, but for some reason it wasn’t taking care of it, so they put her on IV fluids and antibiotics. She is doing much better though her white blood cell count is still not back to normal. She is still pretty tired and weak but will probably be released today or tomorrow.

In the meantime, her assisted living place said they could not take her back because her level of care was more than they could provide for. This in spite of the fact that when Jim specifically asked them, when we first interviewed there, if he would need to move her again at some point if she got worse, and they said no, they could take care of her til the end.

So Jim has been having to call and visit a number of nursing homes or “skilled nursing facilities” to try to make a decision before she is released from the hospital. In all honesty, we’re are kind of glad to move her from the old place because we had some issues there…that may be another post for another time. But having to deal with it all in a short time frame has added pressure. He has found an acceptable place not far from where she was, which is close to church and not too far from where he works, so we will be moving her when she’s released from the hospital. Initially she’ll be in a rehab/physical therapy short term section and will then be moved to long-term care. We’re also exploring the possibility of home health care. I’d appreciate prayer for a smooth transition and adjustment for her.

Then I had mentioned in an FFF in the last week or two that my niece’s fiance was found to have multiple tumors throughout his body a few weeks ago, one the size of a softball around his aorta. He has been on a heavy chemotherapy regimen and was having pretty severe trouble at first, not able to keep even water down. But he seems to be adjusting better now. He’ll be having chemo off and on for three months, and the doctor thinks he has an 80% chance of being cured. We sure hope so. They are a few hours away, so we’re not able to see them, but they’ve been heavily on our hearts. I am not sure where they are spiritually but they have been asking for prayer.

And finally, the day before we found out about my niece’s fiance, we learned my husband had a mass on his kidney. It was a surprise — the doctor ran a CAT scan due to another issue and unexpectedly came across this. He said that is how they usually find tumors of this kind. He also said that 95% of the time they are cancerous, and it doesn’t work so well to remove just a part of a kidney, so he recommended removing his entire kidney. So that is scheduled in a couple of weeks. The good news is that he won’t have to have chemotherapy or radiation as that is usually not effective with this type of cancer, so surgery should take care of it, and people can survive and thrive with just one kidney. He said it’s not likely that cancer will spread to the other kidney, and from everything else they saw on the CAT scan plus his lack of symptoms, it doesn’t look like it has spread anywhere else, though he did recommend a chest x-ray.

I think at first we were just so glad that he was not in pain and wouldn’t have to have chemo that it hardly seemed as dire as a cancer diagnosis would normally be. But surgery is surgery and cancer is cancer, and occasionally I feel a little more rattled. I think he just wants to get it over with. And of course the issues with his mom have added concerns: we’re hoping and praying that she is stable throughout his surgery and recovery.

He had asked me originally not to mention it on my blog or Facebook, but just recently said he didn’t mind if I mentioned it on my blog. So we would definitely appreciate your prayers for us.


20 thoughts on “Family news….

  1. Oy my, what an ordeal you’ve been dealing with. I’m glad your husband was able to find another home for his mom. My MIL has been experiencing recurring UTI’s and the Dr. has her on sulfa permanently. With this antibiotic it requires drinking a lot of water. Might your MIL be taking sulfa? Just a thought concerning the dehydration.
    I’ll be praying for your husband during this time. Yes, one can live successfully with one kidney. My sister is proof, as well as her husband who donated one of his kidneys to her 8 years ago.

  2. Oh my what a lot of heavy things to handle all at once. When I read about your mIL I immediately thought about a UTI as my MIL also had these with the same symptoms. My FIL is in an assisted living place and they have sometimes said the same as your place did—but I know they can’t always handle long term types of deteriorating conditions so I don’t think I would be surprised if something one day similar happened as with your MIL. I pray all will go smoothly with your hubby–glad they found it. I have a friend whose hubby had something similar happen last month. They were doing a test for something totally different and found the cancer. One never knows what a day will bring forth in our lives–it is so important to live the day in its fullness in the presence of God.

  3. So many things at once! We are praying for you all. My uncle donated one of his kidneys to my mother in 1976, and he is still doing well at age 72, after 36 years.

  4. Goodness, Barbara — what an avalanche of news. I will be praying for wisdom and strength in dealing with all of the attendant details. I know you are trusting the Lord and He will see you through, whatever happens.

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  6. Barbara, you know your family is in my prayers. I’m glad the date was set for the surgery and I pray for God’s peace to envelope your hearts as you wait out the days until then.

  7. Ok, got the story now. Yes, I was surprised to hear that you would have to move your mother-in-law to a new facility. Seems like you just did that! And it would be especially frustrating if you had asked if she could stay there until the end. But it sounds like it’s a good move in the end. Hopefully she will not be even further confused by all of these changes!

    Praying for Jim still!

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  9. I’m sorry I missed this! Will be praying for a speedy recovery. And for your niece’s husband and your husbands mother.

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