Sunday, January 9, 2011

Symptoms of cancer

Many signs may not be distinctive to cancer but run through all other diseases.  Below are some general symptoms. 

One cancer sign is unexplained weight loss. Night sweats and fever often accompany the weight loss.  Again, it could be just because of normal causes however generally a sign.  Back pain, pelvic pain, bloating, or indigestion may be early symptoms with some forms such as bone or testicular cancer.  Usually, pain is a symptom of advanced disease.  Skin cancer may produce visible skin signs such as darkening hyper-pigmentation, yellowing, reddening, generally skin color changes.  Change in bladder function, constipation, diarrhea, frequent urination, small amounts of urine, and slow urine flow.  Pain with urination, blood in urine, and any changes could be signs.  However again, these are not conclusive unless tested and proved.

There are many signs and we cannot list them all here, we can however pray that God will intervene before any of the symptoms crystalize to become full blown cancer.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

In recent history, I have had many colleagues, friends, and classmates forced into dealing with this horrible disease.  Some experience good results, others deal with similar experiences such as I. While I may not be famliar with the family member, I cherish my friends and pray for them.  Some I have sat with while hearing results from doctor's, others simply expressing worries about physical symptoms.  While my interest in them may vary on personal levels, my passion about finding a cure and fighting this horrible disease never wavers.  I feel thier greif, pain, and reach out to them.  Sharing the light of God and comforting them, for they are not alone. 

As always, please feel free to share your comments.
This may be most difficult for me to write.  While I am unable to recall each particular event, it sums up my expereience dealing with mom and her struggle with cancer.  While she was the person with the disease, the hardest part was in lifestyle and friendship changes.  Being unable to work a job as my new job was a full time care giver with little experiece of this type.  Not able to be social in any means, very much a disconnect from my friends and much of the family.  I ceased going to social events, church, visiting my child, tobacco, alcohol, I became overwhelmed and out of energy.  Researching moms insurance, legal documents, arranging treatments to doctor's, cancer centers, tests, etc..not being able to sleep without one eye open.  Limited friends and family members from the medical profession stopped in to provide help and encouragement.  Other friends and family would occasionally stop by to visit socially... all took time, energy, and effort to get her beautified and somewhat socially exceptable.  The phone calls started, I began to feel frustrated at the repitition and unavailablity to be social.  Immediate family had jobs, seldom visited as this reminded them of experiences of both dad and sister passing from other forms of cancer.  After several month's, people became concerned about me and how I coped.  I didn't have a choice, others were unwilling to assist.  I was wore out.... lack of sleep, constant care.  I had no time to myself, made decisions to cease communication with some who never called or visited.  When someone would visit, they often needed my time, energy, or materials.  Then they went off to other places to have fun...never a volunteer to offer my time to sleep, run errands, or go to church. 

I have no issues with others who want\ like to have fun.  I had done so with them several times for many years.  Not all friends continue to follow us as we change as they have thier own path's in life. Doesn't mean I still missed them and felt horrible I was unable to partcipate or reciprocate my friendship.  My diet had begun to struggle as time was of the essence.  Began eating comfort foods and more unhealthy habits formed.  I wanted to make healthier choices, just didn't have time to prepare them or act on them.  Visiting the gym was out of the question!  What was enjoyable to me at this point was watching TV or reading a book.  I typically spent much time on the computer dealing with was no longer enjoyable for myself.  While supporters offered wisdom..."your doing a wonderful thing" and "mom is greatful for what your doing", I still felt isolated and very much alone.  Sitting with mom while doctors told her test results, holding her hand while fluid was drawn from her lungs, dealing with pharmacists so "I" was able to pick up med's and ask questions.  Fighting with medical personel so "I" could be informed as she was no longer able to make phone calls, office visits, write mail, etc...CHANGES HAVE GOT TO BE MADE IN OUR MEDICAL SYSTEM!!! 

Around Christmas of 2005, we visited the Cancer Center once again for chemotherapy.  Which meant I sat and watched as several patients sat in chairs as blood transfusions occured.  The odor, witnessing others in better and worse conditions than mom, nurses scattered across the room, financial counselor's wanted $$, etc...Well, on that particular day we payed a visit to the attending doctor who told us all treatments had been made and no progress.  We had run out of options and there was nothing else they could do.  Mom gave up at that very point, told me she wanted to go home and die!!  I'm like "you've got to fight to stay alive"!!!!!  No, she was exhausted, out of options doctors recommended, and in her mind.... ready to quit.  Well, HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Less than 2 month's later, she had passed, buried, and I was suddenly alone.  Nurses, suppliers came to retrieve thier supplies, pastors and coroner came and went. 

Suddenly and instanteously....I was alone.  Had no clue what to do with myself, time, energy.  I was depressed, lonely, and didn't feel good myself.  While I know this entry may be scattered, I'm also aware if I make editions it may never get out.  Thanks for your patience and understanding!