I’m hoping this is the last update about my father in the hospital. I’m exhausted by the whole thing and I’m not even directly involved, so I can’t imagine how my mom is feeling at this point.
My dad has stage four cancer, and the only treatment possible was
twelve weeks of chemo. He did well with his treatment until the last
round when they put him on a drug called Xeloda and it sent him into the
emergency room. He nearly died.
His journey within the hospital, as I explained it to my kids the
other night, was that: He started in the ICU, improved enough to move
to the oncology ward, improved further and got to move to rehab, then a
blood infection sent him back to the ICU, and now he’s working his way
back up to rehab. It has been a nightmarish few weeks watching my dad
roll up and down from a sleepy and delusional state to seeming like
himself, from pain to relative comfort, from people saying we should
prepare to let him go to him reading the New York Times again and
drawing in his sketchbook. The news when they rushed him back into the
ICU was so dire that I packed my car and made arrangements to drive out
to Detroit, but my brother kind of beat me to it. He flew in from New
York and we decided it made more sense to tag team if possible. He
emailed photos of dad’s rapid improvement, and promised to call if he
honestly thought I needed to go there.
The most recent picture I’ve seen of dad he was sitting up and
smiling, sketchbook in hand, somehow managing to bring a touch of
dignity to his silly looking hospital gown. He looks like my dad
again. That wasn’t true when I was out there a few weeks ago. The hope
at this point is he goes back to rehab where they will make sure he is
strong enough to return home. If I don’t write otherwise, just assume
that’s the case.
I’m sick of this roller coaster and I’m glad to get off for a while.