The Great Unknown
Jim was with Ana today while I tried to be here with Emily, although my mind was still in Westchester worrying, wondering and obsessing over how she was feeling. She had a better day with some visitors (Liz, you are awesome) and less pain. She was on morphine nearly constantly the first couple of days after the biopsy and Jim said she only needed it once today.
We’ve gotten a lot of emails and messages since I posted the preliminary diagnosis yesterday. Thank you all for your words of love and support. I can honestly say that your concern and desire to help is propping me up when I feel close to collapse. The one revision to yesterday’s news is that Ana will not be starting chemotherapy this weekend or even early next week since it appears that the biopsy results won’t come back until mid-week. So, we’re still in limbo.
Limbo is what I need right now because I’m not entirely ready to accept that Ana will be getting chemotherapy. I’ve heard from several people about alternative treatments and while I am trying to keep an open mind, I have to admit I am utterly, desperately afraid. My fear is all-consuming. If she gets chemo, will it destroy her from the inside out? If she doesn’t get chemo, will the cancer spread into her blood and bones? Will the tumor even respond to chemo? And then there’s the surgery…
Do I dare hope that a liver transplant will cure her? Will the cancer come back after she goes through hell and gets a new liver? What does it mean for her future that she will be on anti-rejection medication for the rest of her life. I mean, she’s eleven! Will I be strong enough to hold it together when things get hard? I mean, really, really hard? Can we survive this financially? Emotionally?
I told someone today that I feel like I’m falling. All of you are reaching down, trying to grab me, but I’m being pulled down, further and further out of reach. I feel separate, and alone. I don’t know what to do or how I can get back to a place where I feel safe again. Right now nothing feels safe. I went into Ana’s room to put some clothes away and saw her bag from Montreal, not yet unpacked, and the new clothes we bought for school, and her backpack – empty and waiting, and I felt myself falling again. I want to go backwards, not forwards, to a time when none of this was even fathomable. I’m sorry. I know I need to be strong.