Thursday, December 11, 2014

Remembering...5 years ago

Five years ago the doctors here decided that I was sick enough with something to send me over to Burlington for an endoscopy which they do not perform here.  A three hour trip.  I remember being so sick and so tired because I hadn't been sleeping for weeks with the itching.  I literally tried sleeping with ice packs on my feet and when that didn't work well enough I would get up and sit on the side of the tub with my feet in ice water until I couldn't feel them anymore and then go back to bed hoping to sleep before I started to feel anything.  I would spend enormous amounts of time just itching my hands.  I told the clinic I went to that it was "orgasmic itching."  It felt so good to scratch but I was bleeding.  Gary moved down to sleep on the floor so he could get some sleep.  And the last week I had been sitting up in a rocking chair by the wood stove with my feet in ice water to stave off the worst of the itching while feeding the fire.  Miserable, exhausted, nauseous, and as it turned out (the lighting here must be bad) jaundiced.  One of my sisters (Eileen) met us at the hospital.  They struggled to put in an IV.  I don't know why that is so hard on me, but...when we got into the operating room the anesthesiologist said the IV wasn't good enough and I tried to hide beyond the nurse next to me and started to cry so he said he would make do and redo it when I was out.  Then  sweet oblivion.

The recovery room and I was just waking up when the surgeon stood there shaking his head and telling me how sorry he was but I had pancreatic cancer.  I didn't realize then what a death sentence that really is.  I didn't know my sister and husband had found out in the hallway while they wheeled me out still intubated.  Or that they were out there crying.  What the Hell!  I rarely got sick...we eat healthy foods...ok I could exercise a little more...and I do like wine but...and I used to smoke but had quit 28 years before...The good thing was that the itching was from a blocked bile duct and the bile was under my skin and they fixed that with a stent while they were in there.

Anyway, we called the boys and said we would talk when we got home the next day because I didn't want them to find out over the phone.  However, my Noah had already looked up enough on the internet that he knew.  I was sorry we hadn't taken them with us.  Adam was already living in Hawaii by then.

So...that was December 11, 2009.  I remember it well.  The best thing???  I'm still here.


  1. Love your blog ! I'm a weaver too - but mostly teaching.
    Congratulations ! It feels great to be still alive. I'd breast cancer for one and a half year - my scans are clear too.
    We will survive and weave !


  2. What an amazing anniversary to celebrate! Congratulations to you!


  3. So very, very glad you're still here.
    Catching up, after being away for awhile. I've missed you and your colorful creations :)