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[Cancer, Family]

[family|cancer] Back to the hospital (not me this time)

Yesterday afternoon, [info]tillyjane (a/k/a my mom) called me to come take her to the ER. I’d finished my Day Jobbery, just capped off an hour of writing time on Going to Extremes, and was preparing for another long interview take on the documentary project.

Instead, Donnie Reynolds, Lisa Costello and I loaded up into Donnie’s car and raced across town in rush hour traffic to pick up my mom at her primary care clinic and transport her to her ER. Donnie brought his “B” camera, because we were shooting for a documentary about the lives of me and my family, after all.

We got [info]tillyjane to the ER, where a four-hour wait ensued. Along with some guerrilla filmmaking. My mom’s housemate A— showed up after a bit. Eventually [info]tillyjane was processed and admitted, which led to about four hours of hurry-up-and-wait testing. We recognized our ER nurse from prior visits, and he recognized us. That’s a frequent flyer club you don’t want to be a member of.

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In the end, the tests were inconclusive. The symptoms which had caused her to be referred to the ER did not recur. My mom was sent home somewhat after midnight. She has specialist followups, probably next week. For now, she is fine. A— Donnie and Lisa are all Heroes of the Revolution for being there and keeping both [info]tillyjane and me propped up and going.

As for me…

Her symptoms are not mine to describe here, but suffice to say they were closely akin to what drove my original hospital admission and cancer diagnosis back in 2008. That possibility won’t be ruled out until after her specialist followups. I am very frightened for her, far, far beyond anything justified by the clinical evidence or current medical opinion. I know this is my emotional trauma over cancer shouting loudly in my ear. It’s not logical. But it is very real.

Even if the worst happens, we know what to do. And it’s likely enough the worst won’t happen. Of course, that’s what they told me about my initial presentation. Cancer wasn’t even on the top five list of likely diagnoses. That’s what they told me about my initial metastasis, that it wasn’t at all likely to ever happen.

Once more, I am feeling the burn.


Photo © 2012, Joseph E. Lake, Jr.

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This work by Joseph E. Lake, Jr. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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