I received this quote in a text from my cousin Patrick on Saturday November 25th, 2017- 3 days after my mom was rushed to the ER in McKinney, TX for what my family believed was a stroke.
My mom was not having a stroke though. After doing multiple scans and tests, doctors determined she had a “lesion” on the left side of her brain.
All-the-while, I’m in Denver. Asleep.
I had missed a call from my dad around midnight on Thanksgiving, but my wife’s phone rang loudly at about 12:30- which I promptly answered.
The news he broke to me brought me to my knees. I wasn’t there. Why wasn’t I there? How can I get down there? What is a lesion?
My family was able to calm me down and told me to not make an irrational middle-of-the-night flight from Denver to Dallas.
I woke up after minimal sleep on Thanksgiving morning to a call from my aunt who is a nurse telling me that the doctors in McKinney, TX believed the cancer my mom had beaten 18 years ago had actually not been beaten but had spread to her brain. Another blow. My world was spinning.
After being home in Doniphan as much as possible numerous phone calls, faxes, a late evening trip to meet my aunt and uncle on the interstate to hand off imaging disks, and countless prayers- my mom had surgery for removal of the tumor (“lesion”) on December 14th, 2017.
The surgery was very successful. The neurosurgeon was confident in what she had removed. But she (the neurosurgeon) stated the biopsy results of the tumor were crucial in knowing what my mom was up against. She told us it very well could be a metastatic tumor (meaning it spread from somewhere else, possibly from 18 years ago) but it could also be a primary tumor (meaning the cancer was solely in her brain).
After what seemed like a thousand years, my mom got the phone call from her neurosurgeon with the results. The tumor was not a metastatic tumor. It didn’t come from anywhere else. The tumor she had was a primary tumor. The diagnosis came with much fear and many questions. The medical terminology, the treatment, the numbers, everything was overwhelming.
My mom met with the neuro-oncologist (the only one in the state of Nebraska) on January 10th, 2018. Her plan of care was determined. She would go through 6 weeks of radiation 5 days a week at UNMC in Omaha in conjunction with taking chemotherapy every single day in pill form.
Finally. My mom was able to breathe a sigh of relief. She now knows what she has to do. We all now know what she has to do. She has to beat this. And as she has before, she will again.
My mom is my rock, as many people’s mothers are. She’s my best friend and has been by my side my whole life- through the best and worst of times. She’s loved me when I didn’t love myself and has taught me so much about the world.
I must let you know, creating this page was a very difficult decision. Asking for help has never been a strength of mine.
Today, I come to you humbly asking for help. With my mom’s primary care taking place in Omaha and me living/working in Denver, I need to travel by plane. After the radiation is through, I then will continue to commute by vehicle to Doniphan as I have been every week since 11-25-17.
With the money raised I will purchase plane tickets, gas, oil changes/car maintenance, and Uber/Lyft rides (if necessary to and from the airports).
If there is any amount of money left after these things are taken care of, I am going to give the money to my parents and aunt and uncle (whom will be helping us out in Omaha) to pay for any out of pocket expenses that they may have. If they have no need, then the money will be donated to the charity of their choice.
I can’t tell you all how much your thoughts, prayers, cards, phone calls, words, hugs, meals, and visits mean to me and to my family. We have an incredible support system and are beyond blessed to know and have and each and every one of you.
I want to express gratitude to you all in advance if you are able to donate/help in any way to my travel expenditures. It means so much to me and Lacey and to my mom and dad.
Sending love and hugs to you all. Remember, “We’ve got this!!”
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