Sunday, May 31, 2009

The start of many Thank You's.

Today was Jerry's memorial. It was more beautiful that we could have imagined. There was a house full of family & friends, some that were even a surprise. Many hugs & lots of love- friends old & new. My family was incredibly blessed. I'm going to start thank you cards soon, but we want to thank everyone here too:

The Botros family for bringing so much food, you are very generous. The Pete McGowan Family & Joe Michael families for letting us borrow your EZ Ups. Esther C. for being a HUGE support to our family. Patty of Creative Touch linens for letting us borrow your linens. Jesse Macleod for singing for us last minute, you wowed everyone. Kenna, Michelle, Kolleen, Liz, Rena, Robyn, & Kathy for bringing amazing food. Loretta, Staci, & Yvette, for being complete & total servants of love to my family. You ran the whole show. The Rippee Family for being so overly generous all the time. Becca Jarrett for the beautiful collage & just being here. I'm so happy to know you & Jason. Ryann for taking care of my girls the entire day so that we could concentrate on the service & visiting family, thank you for loving on them. Anita for food, cleaning, and delivering items back to their destination. Last to Lisa, all I can say is "everything" that is what you mean to this family. There just aren't enough words for every way you have supported us.

Through all of you you, my mom has been so blessed and was able to see truly what God's love is all about! I know that will all the prayers and support pouring into her, she will be okay.

My last posting on Jerry's blog will be in the next few days as I'm going to post some photos & maybe even a slideshow.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Please join us for Jerry's Memorial Service
1pm
Sunday, May 31st
3163 Banton Circle
Corona, CA 92882
951-738-9412
or
951-737-8309
or
Loraynekay@aol.com
Please let me know if you'd like exact directions.
All friends & family invited. Kids are welcome!
Please let us know if you'll be able to join us to celebrate his life!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Services for Jerry

Just wanted to let friends & family know that we'll be having services for Jerry early Sunday afternoon. Pastor JT's schedule is pretty tight this last minute so we are feeling blessed that he has any times available. Please put it on your calendar & let us know if you think you can make it. Exact location & time will be figured out tomorrow early afternoon.

Thank you to all the calls, emails, & facebook posts! We've been overwhelmed with all the prayers & thoughts. My mom is feeling so loved right now.

Jerry's passing

The dreaded phone call just came in from Lorayne's mom that Jerry just passed away about 4:45 this morning. Needless to say her Mom is a mess, but Lorayne is already on the way to the hospital to console and help her.

I saw Jerry last night around 7:30; I could tell he was not doing well.

May he Rest in Peace now that his body has been rid of the pain that overtook him so quickly.

Say a prayer for the rest of the family, especially Grandma as it will be extremely hard on her as she was in the hospital room when it happened.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tonight

My mom called about an hour ago and said she was told by both of Jerry's doctors & the hospice worker that came by that they do not expect Jerry to live through the night. He breathing has become less frequent; they've now put a full face mask on him to help him take in air. He did not "come to" today as my mom & the doctors had hoped. My nephews are on their way, as is his son, Bill should be there about now. I'm hoping to get over there and spend the later 1/2 of the night there. Will keep this blog posted as I can.

Today's visit


I took my mom to visit first thing this morning & right after we walked in, the doctor came in. Jerry was peacefully sleeping from the morphine. Since Jerry was so peaceful I decided to head back to Corona & take the girls out of school to come visit and say their goodbyes. I've been waiting for a time but he has been changing so quickly you never know what condition he'll be in each visit. The girls were able to draw him pictures in the car and spend some time with him. I think Isabella knew exactly what was going on but Sophia being so little had no idea.

This is what we know of his condition now: His kidneys are now in failure. The doctor was in to talk with us while we were there. His body is now shutting down and they are figuring out where & when to release him in the next few days. He will be off of all medications & be given morphine to keep him comfortable.

They were going to take him off a bit of the morphine this afternoon. My mom was hoping to get him "back" for just enough time to say hello to him, have him talk with her, and hug her. I pray that she at least gets that for a few minutes. She'll sit at the hospital today until he wakes up. Jerry's son, Jason & wife, Becca are also in town tonight to say goodbye to him too. We're hoping that family members will be able to get Jerry's mom here soon to say her goodbyes as well.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Tonight's sad update

My mom just called me nearly inconsolable. They made it in to see Jerry later this evening after a BBQ. She just couldn't beleive how bad he was. He was moaning very loudly. His eyes were rolling back into his head. He couldn't speak to her. The nurse told her that he is in a lot of pain right now. The nurses had given him some heavy duty pain medication. Today is now day two of his not eating any food. My mom said that she overheard the nurses talking about that he had a DNR order in place. She thought that hearing that couldn't be good. I'm planning on taking her to the hosptial tomorrow as soon I drop the girls off at school to check in on him. My mom is so very sad. This all happened so fast, there was so much she didn't get to say or do. Please pray that his suffering he is going through ends quickly.

Update after Memorial Day weekend

We had a garage sale this past Saturday and thanks to donations from my very generous friends, we made $320 to go towards expenses for Jerry!! Yeah! So awesome!

I'm still waiting on tonight's update but as of this morning Jerry had a very bad night last night. So much that he had to be restrained to the bed (arms & legs) to keep himself in the bed and to keep himself from injuring himself. This morning the doctor gave him a heavy sleeping pill and the doctors were hopeful to be able to finally give him the MRI that they've been wanting. This MRI will be able to tell them so much about what exactly is going on and how much time he has left. They are planning on keeping him in the hospital throughout the week. By the end of this week we should know if he will be going home on hospice or checking into a nursing facitility. They are hoping to spend more time "managing" his medications in hopes that it calms some of his delusions and in hopes that it brings Jerry "back" a little more often. Right now, he just wants to go home.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Arranging Hospice & final arrangments

Today my mom was told that they will be moving forward with arranging hospice care at home for the remainder of his life, the days remaining are anyone's guess. My mom will need a few days to arrange for space for the bed and the rearranging of Jerry's bedroom. I'm going to figure he could be coming home early next week.

Per my mom's request, I've contacted the local cemetary, Corona Sunny Slope, where we are going to start going forward with "pre-need" accomodations. My mom just cannot stomach having his remains put in Ridgecrest so far away. His wishes are to be creamated but we would like a small memorial here at the cemetary so my mom & my girls have some place to visit & place flowers. Unfortunately, cemetaries run a little different than in Ridgecrest where I buried my dad nearly 6 years ago, I didn't have to pay until I received life insurance monies. Here they are requiring at least 20% down but we will be given a discount for going forward with the planning "pre-need". We will need at least $1,400 to have Jerry buried. As a sign of the times, Bill and I no longer have any extra accounts we can pull from to pay for this as well as deductibles from last weeks accident. I'm just not sure how much my mom has in savings. I've been asked by numerous people if there was an account set up to help my mom however she might need. I have now set one up. There is a company called Chip-in. This is linked directly to a paypal account. If you are not familiar with paypal, it is a completely safe way to send money over the internet & you do not have to have a paypal account. Instead of flowers or meals, she could use the extra cash. If you are available to help a little, please do. There is a link at the top of the page. I will keep you posted. Contact me anytime at 951-738-9412. Please keep praying!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The good change is gone

I just talked to my mom & the progress that Jerry had made the past two days has disappeared. He's nearly as confused and ill as he was when he was admitted to the hospital last week. The nurse told my mom that it is typical for these patience to kind-of in & out. There was even an MRI scheduled for today as they expected today to be day 3 of improvement, but because of his current state of mind, it needed to be cancelled. My mom is very surprised and very beside herself because she was really counting on his improvement. Each day will bring something new. She has no idea who or what Jerry will be like when they go into visit him tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Happy news to report

Today is day two of Jerry's improvement. He's now able to answer his phone & take calls. He is knowing really well who everyone is and has been able to carry a conversation. He is still hallucinating and his mind still wanders around the place, but definately a change. My mom's greatest hopes are that the hospital is going to be able to make him stable enough to send him home. He's now been there a week. She is also hoping he is going to be improving each day so that he will get to the point where he can remain calm & still enough to move forward with MRI of his brain. My mom's sister Phyllis is still here visiting & hopefully will remain here until Jerry is sent home & help is offered to care for him from the hospital.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

We won't know if the cancer has gone to his brain

Steve, my mom, & Bill went to visit Jerry today and the nurses told them that today was the best day he's had yet. He was able to keep focused and have a small conversation. He still easily lost focus and went back to seeing things and people that were not there. His memory only lasts a short time befor e resetting itself it seems.

The doctor has decided that an MRI will not be possible. Jerry will be unable to stay still & they will be unable to put him under out of fear that he will not wake up. It will now be everyone's guessing game if the cancer has gone to his brain. That could mean Jerry could be here weeks or months. Once he is stablized, they will arrange to send him home with plenty of help for my mom. All plans for Chemo & Radiation have been stopped. When and if he is ready, he will go home & be made comfortable.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Today's update



Jerry was moved to the "Heart" unit at the hospital. He's in room 1505. Kaiser is working on getting Jerry a social Case Manager to help manage his care. Jerry's closest friend Steve made it in town today- big support for my mom. He'll be here for a few days. My mom says that Jerry had a very rough day, she came home very upset and tearful. He seems to be declining every day.We had been on the fence about bringing the girls to see their Grandpa one last time but my mom decided that with the way he was today, bringing the girls would not be a good idea. He didn't even recognize my mom 1/2 of the day. The doctors tried giving him an MRI but gave him a sedative trying to get him calm enough to take the photos. I think they are going to try & knock him out tomorrow to have the MRI done. Tomorrow Jerry's son will be coming into town, my nephews will be into visit, and my mom's sister Phyllis is driving in from Texas. Tomorrow is a new day! Please pray!! (The photo above was taken on Mother's day just the day before he was hospitalized)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A Car accident.

This morning on the way to the hospital to visit Jerry my mom was in a car accident. She called me at about 8:30 and she was sitting in the emergency room of the same hospital that Jerry is in. She is okay, only minor facial damage from the airbags but is very upset. She totalled the car and it was towed away. She's on her way home and is now faced with dealing with not having a car to get back and forth to see Jerry every day at the hospital, yet alone every day transportation. Bill and I leased that car for her and are not in a situation where we can replace it. So we are praying for a BIG miracle. We are praying that we are able to come up with some creative thinking to be able to get her a car, as I just don't know how possible it's going to be for me to drive her everywhere she needs to go.

After the ER released her, she was able to go up and visit Jerry. There is no change. The doctor told her that, the cancer he has tends to make it to his brain quickly. There are no current plans on him being released and they will take it day by day. The outlook does not look good for him.

I was there all day cleaning her house from top to bottom, went grocery shopping for her, and had dinner waiting for her tonight. Please pray that I have "super human strenght" to take care of her & still run my house & take care of my 3 kiddos. Pray for my mom. Pray that Jerry doesn't suffer much longer.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Latest as of today

Just realized I didn't post so thought I'd put the last of what I've heard. I was able to visit today, though I don't think Jerry would remember. My mom was sleeping so I let her sleep since she did not sleep the night before after spending 12 HOURS in the ER before they could get him a room.
My mom called around 7pm tonight. She decided to head home for the night needing some good rest. The dr's really upp'd the medication they were giving Jerry for his irregular heartbeat and seemed to get his heart to even out. They are still unable to explain his delusions. He's still seeing things, really doesn't know what's going on, can't walk or feed himself.

My mom was actually told by a Dr. today that they may or may not go forward with the MRI after seeing a "small spot" on his PET scan. She was told that, "Well, even if it is cancer in the brain, we will still be going forward with the same treatment." as if it doesn't matter if the cancer has moved to his brain. I'm urging her to press forward for the MRI and NOT to settle for what the Dr. says. She is also saying they will still be pressing forward with the chemo & radiation in hopes of remission. I know it is really hard for her to understand what it is that is going on right now. I think her head knows but her heart cannot accept it.

Right now, the big concern is that if they are going to send him home in the next few days, with his current conditions, my mom CANNOT care for him on her own. There is no way. So, we're just praying for answers. He's at Kaiser Hospital in Fontana. Room 2101.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Just came back from a night at the hospital

Yesterday evening Jerry took a sudden turn for the worst. Mentally & Physically he went downhill. Finally early afternoon today they got the "ok" from his Dr. to get him into the hospital. When I spoke with my mom around 6pm, Jerry was just "gone"- not sure where he was, what year it was, or even who the President of the US is. He hadn't had anything to eat or drink in a day. He told my mom he thought he was allergic to water. I got to the hospital around 8pm and it was just as she said it was. He is very agitated. Won't lay still in his bed or sleep for more than around 1 minute I guess. He thinks he sees things. He is completely incoherent. He doesn't know where he is or what is going on around him. He imagines hot dogs, corn on the cob, and things. As I was leaving they were going to give him a shot of Morphine to calm him as he kept trying to rip the monitors off and get out of bed every 2-3 minutes until my mom was able to remind him of where he was. They've now been sitting in a small room in the emergency room waiting to see another doctor and waiting for a bed to be available within the hospital (got to love Kaiser) My mom is beyond exhausted since Jerry hasn't been sleeping the past week, neither has she. I'm going to call her first thing in the morning and see what is new. I think she is preparing herself for the worst. I will update just as soon as I know something.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Doctor's appointment today

Today was chemo & radiation today. They got the bloodwork back that was taken yesterday and turns out Jerry is low on basically every type of bloodcell in your body, so they were unable to give him chemo again. He will be going to the hospital for a 4 hour transfusion tomorrow before radiation which the doctors are hoping will help get all of his blood cells back up to where they should be. He is also now down to 119 lbs which is concerning to everyone since it is a 5 lb loss in less than a week. With the help of a "caseworker" at Kaiser, they are pressing for an MRI to be done of his brain. No one can answer why he is having so many hallucinations.

Jerry again took a fall today after bumping into a table and has major bruising on his chest, arms, and underneath his chin. It's hard getting an independent man to wait on assistance with every step he takes. Luckily no broken bones. The doctors are are still trying to heal a wound on his arm from a previous fall. They are just having to pack & protect it since his skin is too thin & fragile to stich.

On the positive, Jerry received a call from someone he loves very much in Arizona. It looks as if he is going to be able to come visit with him next week. My mom & Jerry are thrilled. Jerry has also requested brownies. I just put the kiddos to bed.. so I'm going to see if I can get some made- that will make him smile.

Not a very good report to give

I just got back from visiting my mom & Jerry. Since Jerry was up (every time I've come over he is in bed) I wanted him to be able to see the girls for a little bit. Things have changed a lot since I last saw him. Physically he still looks the same (very sick) but mentally, he has deteriorated to the point where it's almost as if he is suffering from alzheimers. He couldn't even carry a conversation with my 3 year old. I talk with my mom every evening about how the day went and she has been telling me just how quickly he's gone down hill since starting the every day radiation, but now I was able to see first hand just how bad he has become. Jerry doesn't really remember much that goes on in a day, he's having panic attacks, when he does get a small period of sleep from not coughing, he thinks someone is trying to kill him or he won't wake up at all. His delusions have become an every day thing; conversations he's not having or people that aren't really there. He just isn't "there" anymore.

As far as physically, he's still at 124 pounds where he has been for about two weeks, which is suprising since my mom says he really won't eat. He cannot move around on his own and is totally dependent on my mom to get him around. He got up two days ago without my mom and fell down the small stairs outside their home (thankfully he is okay, only a little bruised.

At this point, Jerry still wants to keep pushing forward with the Chemo & radiation that is clearly killing him. He wants to feel as if he can still beat this when at this point, it is looking bleek. My mom & the doctors are allowing him to keep going. He is only 6 treatments into his 30 before they will even CT scan him again to see if the radiation is even shrinking the tumors. I think very soon though a decision will be made to stop all treatments, maybe as soon as the next several weeks.

If you are a family member or close old friend, please make arrangements to come visit as soon as you can. Please email me directly at Loraynekay@aol.com or call me at 951-738-9412 if you have any questions.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Still hanging in there

For a week now Jerry has been going to radiation weekdays. He is supposed to be having Chemo once a week too, but again yesterday was told put chemo off for another week since he's not doing well. They will see how it looks next week. I haven't spoke to my mom yet to get today's report but as of yesterday he had 3 very rough days & nights in a row. He was up vomiting all night the night before. He hasn't been sleeping because of his coughing. He has not been eating very much or at all for several days. The doctors still seem as if it is still a good idea to keep pressing forward. They will not do another CT scan until 20 radiation treatments (which I think is extreme) to even see if the radiation is helping. He has become even more weak and pretty much bed-bound. My mom has become an around the clock care taker and is installing baby monitors in the bedrooms this week so that she can hear when he needs her in the middle of the night. To get out to the doctors appointments my mom has to get him in & out of his wheelchair and get it in & out herself, which has been hard for her to do since she herself is not in the best of health. I'm still trying to bring over meals when I can. Jess has been there somewhat but isn't seeming to be much help; sometimes picking up or doing some dishes. I just keep praying; everyone seems to be suffering so much.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Non-small Cell Squamous Cell Carcinoma




After much prodding into my mom I was able to get the exact name of Jerry's cancer so that I myself could go online and do some reasearch. Exactly what Jerry has is NSCLC Squamous cell Carcinoma. It makes up of 30-35% of all lung cancers, the leading kind of lung cancer, normally due to smoking, asbestos, or radiation exposure. This cancer is the leading cause of cancer mortality rates in both men & women.

He is in stage IIIA and based on all the facts and figures that I could find, he has a 20-30% chance of survival. All lung cancers have an average survival rate of 16% over 5 years.

They went into meet with the doctor today & receive his 3rd round of chemo to be told they'd like to give him another week before administring the chemo. They are concerned that he's lost an additional 9lbs in 3 weeks. They will also be visiting the radiation specialist tomorrow to see if he's now a candidate for that. I've posted some photos at Jerry's request, some of his friends in Arizona asked to see what he looked like without hair. The first photo was taken Easter Sunday, the second was taken weeks ago back when my mom shaved his head.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Where do we go when we die?


That was the topic at Church this morning. Jerry was a trooper & made it to church with the family today for Easter. The sermon was amazing. Probably very much what Jerry needed to hear being so very ill. I know that he has been very angry with God wondering why he would receive a lung when he would be stricken down with such agressive cancer. I know that he has got alot of questions that he is going to have to press into. During today's invitation, Jerry took the walk, my mom wheeled him down. I'm hoping that he felt comfort and will put the Lord first in his life as he is on this journey. My heart feels releaved that I now know where he is going if & when he is gone.

Friday, April 10, 2009

The latest scan results

Jerry & my mom waited nearly a week to receive test results from last weeks CT scan. Jerry was told yesterday that the large mass in his lung seemed to have shrunk ( a little) however it did not look as if there was a change in his lymph nodes. Jerry is back today getting another CT scan. Tuesday they have another Dr.'s appt. & his next round of Chemo. Hopefully on Tuesday, they'll be given more information. At this point, my mom is growing quite frustrated and will be pressing into the doctors for more answers.

Jerry is still so weak that he isn't getting out of bed often. He is up coughing almost all night long. He is pretty miserable and isn't able to do much to give him much comfort.

We look forward to getting him to church and our house for Easter Sunday, as Bill will be able to get Jerry around in a wheelchair so that my mom doesn't have to do it all on her own.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Still waiting on CT scan results


This photo was taken just a few weeks ago on March 23rd. Jerry had just recovered from his first chemo treatment. He was feeling pretty good and was able to still walk around a bit. Flash forward to now, he is still loosing about 2 lbs. a week, can't sit or stand for more than a few minutes at a time, needs help keeping balance walking down the hall, and is seeing hallucinations of Sophia throughout the house. Last Thursday he went in for another CT scan as of today, results have still not been called into them. We're waiting to hear if the chemo has taken any effect on him so far. Best case scenario, the cancer is shrinking so they would be able attack with radiation. At this point though, it's on everyone's mind, will he be able to survive that, much less more rounds of chemo?
I'm bringing the girls over as much as I can as they help keep his spirits up. Trying to help with meals and errands when I can, but I'm not able to do as much as I'd like with my 3 little ones in tow. At my mom's request, if you are an old friend & especially family, please call in & check on him, say hello. He hasn't heard from anyone. It would really make his day.

Monday, March 23, 2009

A new finding..

Last night Jerry found a large lump in his groin area that was not there just a week prior. They have a doctor's appointment in Fontana today at 2:30 to have it looked at. They've also got a call into his oncologist. He's got a chemo treatment set for tomorrow. We're praying that the lump is nothing but any lump at this point, is not good. Keep praying!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Follow up..

It's been 12 days since Jerry's first chemo treatment. About two days after treatment Jerry started to feel the brunt of the chemicals and he was in bed barely being able to get up for about 5 days. That was about the worst of it. They were warned of all the possible complications and what to look for and his symptoms really didn't get as bad as anticpated. He's now feeling pretty good and been out & about. His next chemo treatment will be in 9 days.

As of this weekend he is now hairless. His hair started falling out in clumps so he just had my mom shave it all off. I'm anxious to see how our girls react to this "new" grandpa.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

First day of Chemo

After 12 hours of being at the doctors office, talking with the specialists and actually receiving the chemo my mom & Jerry finally got home late last night. As of last night my mom said Jerry was doing well.

Because he cannot undergo the radiation treatments they are having to go with a more agressive chemo treatment. The good news is that somehow he will be able to go less often. Instead of everyday as officially planned. He is going to go back three weeks from yesterday for the same long chemo treatment.

In about 4 weeks, the doctors will do another CT scan to see if the chemo has shrunk the cancer at all. If it has in fact shrunk, the doctors feel that they'll be able to move forward with some radation.

They are expecting his body to feel AWEFUL in the next 3-4 days and expect it to last several days. They were given all kinds of meds for pain & nausea. They were told what to look for and anything out of the ordinary, they are to go to the emergency room.

We are just praying that all is smooth sailing for the next weeks!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Chemo starts in 3 days.

I'm a little late in posting the latest goings-on but last week Jerry did confirm with the doctors that his first day of Chemo will be this Tuesday, 3/2. He'll go in around 9:30 and they'll be headed home around 3:30. They are not really sure what to expect at this point nor do they even know how often he'll be going in for treatment. Again, they'll be coming home with more answers that day.

They are told that the doctors will very closely be monitoring him. I personally have a lot of a lot of reservations if he is even strong enough to go through this. He is coughing a lot at this point and is tired to the point of exaustion just from walking around for a few minutes. But like everyone else, we are trying to have faith that the doctors are doing what is best for his quality of life.

I have to thank Natalie Rippe for caring for my mom & Jerry so much. Bringing them a meal on Saturday has been a complete blessing for them. They appreciate it probably more than you can imagine. My mom also loves the things that the kids make them. She loves them so much!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Radiation is not an option.

Jerry went to another appointment with radiology and had another CT scan. He was informed that he would not be a candidate for radiation. They were also told that he may or may not be contacted tomorrow by the chemo doctor for chemo that may or may not take place any time soon.

Needless to say this is not sitting well with either of them. What does it actually mean for him if he does not receive radiation? Sure his newly transplanted lung will be spared but will he be alive to use that lung? While they are trying to remain positive, their frustrations with Kaiser are growing daily. The fact they have been told that this is a very rapidly growing cancer and now at week 6 since diagnosis and still no plan of action has been put in place.. they are growing doubtful at Kaiser's ability to do anything at this point.

My mom will be calling trying to get some kind of answers tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Radiation may not be an option

Just got an update as Jerry & my mom just returned from the first appointment with Radiation. The doctor they spoke to is not feeling very confident that radiation will even be an option for them. The doctor's concern is that it will likely damage his already weakend lungs. One of his lungs is only at 10% and the other is his newly transplanted lung would be likely to encounter scarring or even rejection. They will go in for another appointment next Tues 2/24 to take another CT, more xrays, pinpoint where he would need the radiation, & come up with a "plan". They will also be conferencing with other doctors for there for their opinions.

They have another appointment in LA tomorrow to biopsy his new lung and hopefully get more information. As every appointment seems to go, they aren't given much news to hope on. Right now, they are left wondering what good Chemo is if he can't have the radiation. Jerry is left feeling a little hopeless right now. Hopefully he will have a little lift in his spirits when Pastor J.T comes to visit them today.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

This week's timetable

They've confirmed that Monday they will be going into radiation to get the "downlow" on what to expect of radiation and the whole process. Tuesday, I'm soo happy to say that Pastor JT from Crossroads will be going to their home & sharing the Lord with them. At first it was at my prompt but then a day later, Jerry was requesting it. I think he knows how very sick he is and has questions. Questions are good. On Wednesday they will be traveling back to LA for the biopsy of the new lung. The doctor is still adamant about having this done prior to going forth with chemotherapy. Hopefully I'll have something more to report by Friday.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Kaiser is great, unless you are sick.

I was dropping dinner off for my mom around 2pm today when they pulled in hours earlier than expected. She gets out of the car and tells me about "The worst day they've ever had". For starters when they left their house at 5am and got on the Metro, they got on the wrong one & ended up in Oceanside. Once they figured out their mistake they went to Irvine then to LA. They hurried and raced all around. They battled uphill walks, finding their way all over Kaiser, and took flights of stairs due to a broken elevator. All the while, Jerry needing to stop every dozen steps or so to take a rest. They finally get into the doctor, they bring him in the room to proceed with the biopsy. Then a minute later they come walking out. The doctor says, "Oh gosh, our fault, we forgot to have him stop taking his aspirin." They could not go forth with the biopsy for fear of bleeding.

So, they've rescheduled the biopsy for next Wed. and do not want him to move forward with the chemo. & rad. until the biopsy is completed and results are in on the condition of his new lung. However, I'm pushing my mom to fight to the death about having to take a man as sick as Jerry back to LA on Wed. Seems that with this many Kaisers around, a biopsy could be done a little more locally. Especially to compensate for their mistake. Like I've always heard, Kaiser is great, unless you are sick.

So now we'll just wait to see what lies in store for the next week. It's been nearly a month since his initial diagnosis. Kaiser seems to be moving at a snails pace. Maybe they can pony express letters back & forth and get something worked out for them locally next week.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Lots & Lots of Chemo..

On Monday Jerry & my mom met with an oncologist at Kiaser in Fontana. Seems this doctor was very "matter of fact" Chemo will start this coming Tues. 2/17. Then plan will be to have chemo every weekday for 6 weeks and every other week, 5 days a week of radiation. Both of course are in different locations, Ontario & Fontana, so there will be some very full days ahead of them.

Today, they traveled back to his primary "lung" physician in LA. This doctor is quite concerned about the toll chemo & radiation will take on his already weak & frail body. He is suggesting that they do it in several series. He is also very concerned that all this could cause his new lung to reject, in which case, he would be in even worse trouble. They'll be heading back down to LA again tomorrow to do another biopsy, this time on his newly transplanted lung. They'll be checking to see what kind of condition this lung is prior to starting chemo.

Both my mom & Jerry are very upset and now very tired from all the back & forth doctors visits. I'm hoping that I can have a Pastor from my Church come out to their home & sort through some things & feelings with them and I'm hoping that they'll be able to get the occasional meal (other than from me) on the busy Chemo & Rad. days. My heart feels so heavy for them and I still haven't said anything to my kids yet. But God is good.. I'll keep praying.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Cancer is in stage 3.

Last night Jerry & my mom received a phone call around 5:30. The doctor was not sounding very optomistic of his findings. The cancer in his lungs & lymph nodes is in stage 3 and my mom was told that Jerry is a "very sick man". They now have an appointment with an oncologist Monday morning at 11am. They really were not given any more information and hopefully will know more of what the future brings after their appointment.

Both of them are very upset right now and unfortunately I can't say much to bring them any peace. I can just ask everyone to keep praying for them.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The biopsy went A-okay.

Thankfully the biopsy was a success. They were able to go in and get to his lymph nodes on the first attempt. Great news so that they will not have to take a seperate trip to Long Beach to see a specialist. They aren't sure when they will hear anything next but do have another appointment in LA scheduled for next Wednesday.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Another bippsy has been scheduled.

My mom & Jerry returned from a very long day at Kaiser in Los Angeles yesterday and were able to meet with several physicians though still don't have many details.

It was confirmed that on Jerry's last PET scan, that "bright or hot" spots were seen in his lymph nodes. They've now scheduled him for a biopsy of the lymph nodes back in LA this Wed. 2/4. His doctor is optimistic that they will be able to do the biopsy but he does run the chance of it not being able to do it because of built up scar tissue in his lung. In that case, Jerry would be sent to a specialist at Harbor City Kaiser in Long Beach to have the biopsy done on yet another date.

So, for the next weeks, our family waits on these doctors to move forward to give us more answers. We'd like to see it all a bit more expedited, but in the meantime will have to hang on the fact that this is a part of God's perfect timing and not of our own.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thought to be in his lymph nodes

Jerry was back at Kaiser in Fontana into the very late evening on Tues. the 20th having another series of tests, this time shooting "radio active stuff" into his lungs to get a good picture of what it looks like in there (per my mom's description) LOL. They called back with some information on the findings last night (Wed.) they said based on what they are seeing, they feel as if the cancer has probably spread into his lymph nodes. They said at this point they'll fast forward everything to find out more. They have been scheduled to go back to the Kaiser in L.A on the 29th but are hoping they'll receive a call today telling them that it has been pushed to a sooner date.

This news has really worried Jerry & my mom because they were so overly cautious about having alot of information in front of them before even using the word cancer. So, they are greatly feeling that it has gone into his lymph nodes otherwise they would not have said it aloud.

They are anxious to get a call from his transplant coordinator, Sue today(she has still been an advocate for his healthcare with Kaiser since receiving the transplant 18 mo. ago).

We're praying that everything moves forward quickly so that they have all information in front of them & know what to do to move forward.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Cancer.

Jerry received a call around 5:30 tonight giving him the bad news that he has cancer in his "natural lung" as the doctors call it. In June he had received a CT scan which showed a small hole in his lung. He had another CT scan last week that showed the hole had become about the size of a small bouncy ball. The doctors could see a mass on the inside of it. He was biopsied yesterday and received the call this evening.

Finally, they have an answer for his severe weight loss, weakness, & health deterioration. He never recovered from the transplant of his left lung several years ago and has only become more susptible more illness' over the years. We are waiting on my mom to have a lengthy conversation with the doctors tomorrow to find out more.

I fully believe in prayer & ask my friends that you'll pray the fort he following; that comfort & peace is brought to my mom & Jerry throughout this whole new chapter of illness that he's now entering. That Jerry stays strong to battle this cancer.