Tuesday, May 3, 2011

What now?

I got a call that he was ready to come home! My mother in law and I headed to the hospital to get him all packed up. The Dr. was coming by at some point to discuss the results with us, so we sat around for what seemed like hours with packed bags in our laps.

When he finally arrived he was surprised to learn that my father in law knew nothing about the surgery. He told him what the rest of us had known for a week, and then proceeded to share the rest of the results.

There was a 'sizable' tumor on his kidney that they believe is the source of the cancer. There are also a number of other smaller tumors spread throughout his body. The have contacted the Canadian Cancer Society, who will in turn contact him within the month to make an appointment with an oncologist. More waiting.

It was nice to finally go home. I dropped them off and took the Munchkin home for the first time in weeks. Hubby came home from work, we had dinner as a family, and for an evening everything felt normal.

The next day, in the early hours of the morning my cell phone rang and woke us all up. It was my mother in law. He had another seizure, this one lasting a very long time. The ambulance was on it's way, she needed someone to meet her at the hospital.

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Results

The surgery wasn't long, so we didn't have too long to wait for the results. The Munchkin was at my parents house with Grandma so he didn't have to spend another day in the hospital. I left every few hours to feed him and give him a little snuggle. As soon as I left the hospital the surgeon came out with the results.

It is a tumor.

It is cancer.

And we thought that was the bad news.

The surgery was a success! The entire tumor was removed, and there were no complications. That was the only good news. The surgeon explained that the tumor didn't originate in the brain. It had developed in some other part of the body and traveled to the brain. There is a good possibility that there are other tumors throughout the body and brain. Before heading back into the OR he promised that we'd be able to see him in about 20 minutes or so.

By the time I got back 20 minutes had passed and everyone was anxious to see him. We waited for an hour, and then another, and another. Finally my Mother in Law was losing her mind and charged up to his room to demand answers from the nursing staff. I followed her up there and tried to keep things from escalating. The nurses knew nothing, as he wasn't in their care at the moment. One nurse saw the anxiety pouring from my MIL and decided to call down to recovery to see what was happening. Another patient was having complications so no one was being allowed in or out at the moment. That was a relief. We were told that someone would be out to get us as soon as he was allowed to have visitors.

A couple more hours pass, and it's time for me to go home to put the Munchkin to bed. I ask Hubby to pass on my love, and give me a call when it's time to pick them up. Moments after I arrive at my parents house I get a text from Hubby, they are getting in to see him now. The nurse came out to find them and wonders why they hadn't come in yet. "You could have seen him a looong time ago!" she says. I'm pretty sure someone had to restrain my MIL at that point. We joked a few days later that I should have just kept leaving, things would have happened sooner.

He was doing really well by the time everyone got to see him. Alert, joking around, and happy to see everyone. The Dr. had told him the results of the surgery, but he didn't even remember the conversation. MIL decided that no one was allowed to tell him, she wanted him to hear it from the Dr. That would have been great had the Dr. not gone home for the night. His next day in the hospital wasn't until later that week. Instead we spent the rest of the week pretending not to know anything either.

The rest of the week was filled with various scans and tests to search for the origin of the cancer. He assumed the tests were routine and didn't question their purpose. Everyone but my mother in law and I had to go back home to work, so the Munchkin and I stayed with her. There was nothing to do but wait again, so we waited and visited until the surgeon returned at the end of the week with the results from the barrage of tests.