I decided it would be a good idea/challenge to only post about all things not related to making a gayby during the two week wait, or not two week wait (my body is uncooperative).
I think I wrote about it before a little bit, but my step-mom, K, has renal cell carcinoma, stage IV with all of the other markers. Two years ago, Jamie and I were on our way to my sisters wedding dinner rehearsal, when my dad called to tell us what was going on. Jamie and I are, and were, very close to my dad and K. We left to go meet them at a coffee shop and talked before we all went back to the dinner together. My sister got married, we left to head back to Arkansas for school 2 days later, and a few days later she had surgery to remove the tumor. It was beyond hard to leave her and them and our family.
The tumor was big, the size of a deflated football, but they thought they removed it all and it hadn’t spread anywhere outside the kidney. The plan was for her to go back for repeat scans every 6 months and we were all hopeful that after a few clean scans she’d be “cured”
Well, that didn’t happen. At her 12 month scan they found another tumor, on her adrenal gland. We had just graduated and moved back to Utah and were living in a trailer in their backyard (to save money for the awesome house we now own, that’s a post or 5). It was a hard 6 months. Looking back, I wish I had realized that something else was going on.
Then, this past spring they found and removed a tumor from her lung. My other sister came to visit from Seattle and we all went camping. K was sick the whole time with excruciating migraines. A few weeks later we found out she had not just one, but 12 brain tumors- 4 big ones and a bunch of smaller ones and one on her ribs. Her insurance (yay U.S. healthcare) wouldn’t pay for the treatment that had the best outcomes so she started whole brain radiation. Then they found a tumor on her hip and radiated that as well.
We get sugarcoated and vague reports and updates, but I’ve spent enough hours with dr. google and reading dozens of research articles to know that the prognosis isn’t good. Cancer sucks.
We’ve tried to be as supportive as two stubborn, independent parents will let you: made dinner, cleaned the house, shared hugs and tears, listened, smiled, shared our baby making journey and so on. We always want to do more, to get rid of that helpless out of control feeling. So, a couple of weeks ago we did one of those mud runs to show our support. We signed up for the 5k Foam Fest, made awesomely cool t-shirts using the cancer treatment team she assembled in hypnotherapy as our inspiration. Her team is made up of flowers, dragonflies and a wolf pack. What does this have to do with cancer you ask? Money raised from the run was donated to the Huntsman Cancer Institute, where she has been receiving treatment. Here is a photo of the shirt I made
The run was really fun. Her kids and some of our friends were all on a team, and our name was F#*c Cancer. That’s really the only way to put it. There definitely could have been a little more foam throughout the race, I was a muddy mess. Now we just wait and hope that the cancer treatment team gets kicking into gear and kills all those cancer cells.
Here are some more pictures.