Anyway. Part of the reason I've been away has been because my mom's been incredibly ill. Most of you know she was diagnosed last summer with multiple myeloma (an incurable blood cancer) and over the past year we've discovered that she has the rarer, more aggressive type of the cancer. While she's responded well to chemo so far, the doctors have basically said she'll have to have harsher and harsher chemo every month for the rest of her life just to manage the cancer. So in the hopes of pushing the bad chemo back some and gaining her a bit more quality of life for the now, they decided to do a bone marrow transplant. The goal with the transplant isn't to eradicate the cancer--that's impossible--but to keep it at bay for a little while longer.
My mom checked into the hospital two weeks ago for the chemo that destroyed her immune system so that it could be built up again through an infusion of stem cells that they harvested from her body last month. I've been watching her fade a little more every day when I FaceTime her, to the point that sometimes she can barely stay awake longer than a couple of minutes to talk to me. Right now she's in the hardest part of the transplant trajectory, where something as simple as a bad fever could kill her. So far she's doing well, but it's hard to watch your mom get so sick, sicker than I've ever seen her, even before the cancer was diagnosed. I've cried more than once the past two weeks. She'll be in the hospital until sometime around the end of the month; Noe and I are going down to my hometown in August when she's released to help take care of her for a bit.
But today's my mom's 73rd birthday. She worked up until the week before she went into the hospital, and now she's super annoyed that she had to quit her job in order to undergo the 4-7 months of transplant recovery, which makes me both exasperated with her and adore her.
I have to admit I'm scared about all this, though. About whether or not she'll make it out of the hospital, and then what happens after that. She won't be cured of this cancer; the doctors have been very clear about that. So this might buy her some time, but I'm still having to face the fact that she's dying. It's been 11 years since my dad died and I still miss him constantly. I'm not certain I'm ready to lose my mom any time soon. Having to come to terms with that isn't easy, you know? I love my mom. Our relationship is complicated and has been for a really long time, and it's been difficult at moments, but the grace of going through this journey with her has been that maybe we've had a chance to put some of that away. All that matters right now is that she's my mom and I love her. Even when she drives me crazy. I don't want her to leave me yet.
So. I haven't been around much here. Like I said, Twitter and Tumblr are just easier at times, less difficult to dip a toe in as I have time. But I miss this place, and I miss fandom. It's hard, I think, when you've slipped away for a time. The longer you go, the harder it is to post. (I've had a version of this post written up in one form or another since the day my mom went into the hospital. It's just hard to hit post entry, you know?) So I guess this is me, hitting that button down there, to say hi and I'm sorry I haven't been around and life is hard sometimes and I really miss this place. A lot.
This entry was originally posted at http://femmequixotic.dreamwidth.org/5232