Our Battle Against PancreaticCancer

Nearly 4 years ago, in the Autumn of 2013, my mom was finally able to realize a lifelong dream, when she built a modest 2 bedroom bungalow, and began living on a property that she bought with her Father when she was 19years old.

This property was a major aspect of our childhood. We spent our summers camping there when my younger sister, cousin, and I, were kids.

For more than 40 years, every Spring/Summer my mom spent her free time driving several hours from the city, to plant 500 trees throughout the property, with the goal of making this property a haven for local wildlife.

This property is an outward expression of who she is.

Less than a year after she began living in Meaford, in July 2014, tragedy struck our family when my younger sister, then 27 years old, suddenly passed away.

The sadness was so overwhelming that my father still is unable to work to this day, and is now on disability.

My mother has been working two jobs to keep up with their expenses.

Almost exactly 2 years after my sisters passing, as time began to heal the loss of my sister, and we all started to get back on our feet a bit; my mother was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer.

At first the doctors thought my moms cancer was in an early stage, so they scheduled her for surgery. During the surgery it was discovered that her tumour was much larger than they had initialy thought, and despite clean margins, the tumour sat beneath a major artery, making the tumour unresectable. So they closed my mom back up.

She was officially diagnosed terminal, with stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer, with spread to her lungs.

While she recovered from the surgery, she used her 15 weeks of EI, to help cover her expenses.

We sought out a second opinion at Princess Margaret's Pancreatic Cancer Centre, hoping to find someone who might be able to do some vascular reconstruction; but they determined that the tumour was actually in procimity to TWO major arteries, and there was nothing further they could do.

Despite the sad and shocking news, doctors were confident that given her young age of 62, and her overall health, that my mom would do well with the strongest form of chemotherapy, and that she would be able to get a good measure of time to live. My mom was determined to get as much time as possible, and as soon as she was able, my mom went back to work, and began chemotherapy.
After about 6 months, some bloodwork and a CT scan were done and it was determined that my mom was responding really well to the chemo; her tumour had shrunk an incredible amount, they couldn't even see her lung lesions anymore, and her CA 19-9 measurements showed almost no cancer in her system. We were elated!

But in February 2017, my mom admitted that she had been having unimaginable pain. When she discussed this with her oncologist, she was taken off chemo to give her body a break.

Still on break from chemo, in April 2017, my mother had her usual ultrasound and bloodwork which suggested that the cancer had taken off again, now greater than when she was first diagnosed.

Having never given my mother a survival timeframe before, it was at this time that the oncologist, finally did; giving my mother an estimated 2 months left to live.

That was 3 weeks ago.

But once again my has mother refused to accept that! Still determined to have more time, she searched out some trial treatments; one of which she is set to begin in the coming weeks, in London, ON. 3 hours away from her home.

While determining my mothers eligibility for the trial, the doctors in London did their own CT scan and blood work.

The results of these tests were devastating as they showed that the cancer has now spread to her liver.

Thankfully, my mother was accepted into the trial.

Althought the acceptance news is great, she has been instructed that she is no longer allowed to work. That she must reserve her energy to fight.

Through all of this, currently my landlords are having the house emptied of all tenants so that they can renovate. I live nearly 3hours away from my mother, and because of a Family Court Order, I am unable to move up to my moms house to help her out. Financially, I do what I can, but as a single mom, my own expenses are already really tight as I scrimp and save for first and last months rent, and moving expenses.

In all the craziness, my mom has yet to have her will updated. It’s a complicated one, and so my mom believes the cost to do this could be as much as $1000.00 An amount we just are unable to come up with at this time.

She realizes that she may need to sell or rent out her house, but there is still work that needs to be completed before she can even do that.

Then there is now the added expense for us to drive back and forth to London for the trial. I will have to drive nearly 3hrs from Stouffville, to Meaford, to pick up my mom, then take her to London, another 3hrs away. And then back again. This will be happening several times a month.

With all my mother has been through over the years, and possibly with only weeks or months left; I really want for her to be able to stay in her dream home until the end, without the worry of how she is going to buy groceries or pay for her utilities. I cannot take care of her financially, and I am unable to be there more for her, and I feel terribly guilt about it.

 My mom and I have been a team. Helping each other out as best we can - but at this point, we just don't have the means we need.

So, I’m asking for your help.

We are looking for someone who would be willing to donate their time to help update my moms Will; or the funds to pay someone to do it. And I am asking for donations so that my mom can spend her last days fighting this wretched disease, and not worrying more about the expenses of her living.

I feel that this is all I can do for her at this point. I cannot take her pain away or heal her. I cannot be there for her everyday as I wish I could.
Asking for your help is the one thing I can do for my mom.

Thank you for taking the time to read our story and plight. Please share this everywhere.


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Angela Kathleen 
Whitchurch-Stouffville, ON
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