My dad got the results of his tests back and he has to have surgery two days after Christmas. The surgery will include removing a tumor and a large part of the roof of his mouth and some reconstructive surgery. According to my dad (who I have mentioned isn’t the best at complete honesty) the cancer hasn’t spread so they want to get it out ASAP. If this is really the case, his prognosis is decent and I have my fingers crossed that everything goes well. I can tell he is really nervous and it’s really putting a damper on the holiday but we are all doing our best to enjoy this time as much as we can.
Arya and I have been at my parent’s house since the 19th and we will be here until the 28th. So we will be here for the surgery but very little of the recovery. I thought about changing my flight to stay longer but I’m not sure having a baby around will help ease stress. Although she definitely makes people smile ( she is a baby after all) she has recently started experiencing some separation anxiety. The timing sucks because my family definitely needs some baby snuggles but Arya starts crying about 70% of the time someone else tries to hold her or watch her. I can’t even leave the room when I finally have help. My sister and dad seem to understand it’s just a baby phase but my mom seems to be taking it very personally. Sadly she is really in need of some baby snuggles but she is really frustrating me with her comments about me causing this by ” spoiling ” Arya. But I’m trying to take it in stride given the added stress of my dad’s illness.
Also, my aunt ( who is my mom’s best friend) has cancer too and her prognosis is really bad. I’ve been ” negotiating ” over text with her son to try and get us all together for Christmas. We have all spent the holiday together for as long as I can remember but over the last few years him, his wife, and their two ( now three kids) have been going out for Chinese while my aunt and uncle and his sister spend Christmas with us. It definitely seems that this is an issue his wife has but it’s really weird. This year, my aunt and uncle are going for Chinese food too ( I’m assuming because she wants to spend what will likely be one of her last Christmas’s with her son and grandkids), when it’s obvious she would prefer we all have Christmas together. My mom was in tears the other day talking about how she knows my aunt is dying and that she wants to spend time with her. Me and my sister were so fed up with this selfish bullshit so I sent her son this text:
He didn’t respond. I’m assuming he was either ignoring it or fighting with his wife about it. After 24 hours of silence I got annoyed and sent: “what’s up? Are you just not going to respond?”
Then he sent this total BS about his baby being sick and how they would try to make it.
I’m so frustrated. This isn’t about his wife and their petty weirdness. It’s about our parents both being sick and having one last holiday all together. I’m fully aware I may be projecting a bit but I’m just so angry at them. I get that he is dealing with his mother’s illness but it’s just so selfish and shitty. I’m assuming they won’t show up but I’m holding on to some hope that they will.
To end this on a more positive note, I got the most adorable picture of Arya with Santa ( no separation anxiety with him 🤔)
My dad might still have cancer. Based on the info my dad gave me (which isn’t always everything) a specialist looked at my dad’s scans and decided he didn’t like what he saw so he ordered more tests. His opinion is that my dad will likely need some sort of surgery and may lose the roof of his mouth-necessitating re-constructive surgery. We won’t know anything definitive until December 17th leaving my poor dad nervous and in limbo.
In the midst of this, my mom fell outside and broke six ribs and punctured a lung. My dad wasn’t able to get her up so they had to call an ambulance and my mother lied and told them she felt fine. Then she waited three days to go to the hospital! She is ridiculous. When she finally went in they kept her for a week. About 5 days into her stay she started having these weird hallucinations which she described in detail to me and my sister. The stories included a little boy who was cold that snuggled with her all night (?)and insisting that she was not in the hospital because she was sick but because she was studying nursing(??!). It was very disconcerting to say the least. The doctors said it was because she is elderly and that they get “a bit confused” in the hospital. This did not seem plausible at all (and i have my theories of what was actually causing it that I won’t share). My dad seemed satisfied with this explanation but my sister and I were nagging him to make sure to not leave her alone if she was still like this at home. My dad reluctantly agreed. Luckily my mom went back to normal after returning home (confirming my secret theory).
While this was all going on, I was in Lake Tahoe. Unfortunately, this was not for a vacation, but because the air in our area was unsafe (especially for babies). It was at a level marked “hazardous” by the EPA with warnings of a long term health impact-especially for children and the sick and elderly. I live about 130 miles from the Camp fire that destroyed the town of Paradise (and some of the surrounding areas) but because the winds were so strong all of East Bay and San Francisco were blanketed in smoke. It was very apocalyptic and many people (including me) were walking around with masks on and you were advised to stay inside with the windows closed with an air filter (if you could find one). I had bought one during the previous wildfires because Arya was two months old and coughing. My work closed along with most of the schools in the area and the city was a ghost town.
My friend (who is also a single mother by choice) rented a cabin in Lake Tahoe (where the air was much, much, better) with her sister and her husband and two kids. She invited us to go with them she we drove up after work the Thursday before Thanksgiving. During the drive, her son (who is 20 months old) threw up about 5 times. We thought he was car sick due to the super winding roads. Unfortunately, he had the norovirus! (In case you don’t know about the norovirus, it is a really intense flu that lasts about 48 hours and i hate it with every fiber of my being). We realized it was the norovirus when my friend became insanely ill the following night, followed by me the next day. I was so sick that I was unable to even keep water down so I was incredibly weak and dizzy. My friend’s very sweet parents came up Saturday to help us and her amazing mom watched Arya Saturday night because I was physically unable to take care of her. It was definitely the hardest days of parenting I have ever had. In the midst of this, I had a brief due for work so I was literally throwing up, lying down, and then working. It was terrible.
Arya came down with it when we one the way home the following Monday. My poor bug cried and fussed the entire five hour drive home. I had to stay home with her the next day and although I brought her to daycare on Wednesday, they made me pick her up. It was rough-especially because I still hadn’t slept much and was finishing up the brief.
But, we survived and had an awesome Thanksgiving. We also got Arya’s first Christmas tree. The holidays are definitely more fun with a baby!
Work is starting a bit later today and I have an extra 30 minutes before getting on the train. I stopped at one of the myriad of new hipster coffee shops in my neighborhood and am eating a croissant and latte contemplating nothing in particular. Baby- free time can be so re-charging.
Last night I took Arya to a work event and she was a total rockstar and hung out in a huge crowd smiling and playing with strangers. I’m again so so thankful to have such an easy baby. And it doesn’t hurt that she is at the most adorable age.
I have been dreaming of having a kid on Halloween for years and it finally happened. I took Arya trick or treating with my friends and their 1 year old. The kids had no idea what was up but it was adorable and I get to eat all of the candy so it was a win/win. I am such a nerd for Halloween that I bought Arya’s costume 4 months before she was born. I had to get it because I’m obsessed with dinosaurs and the costume is a baby dinosaur hatching from an egg. I also made myself a matching mommy dinosaur costume. Arya was shockingly chill about keeping her costume on-even in the summer-like heat we were having. Here she is in all her adorable dinosaurness:
The PET scan didn’t find anything! They are just going to do preventative radiation. I’m shocked because I really was preparing for the worst possible scenario. Here is a cute baby picture to celebrate:
The doctor still hasn’t told us the results of the PET scan. We were supposed to find out (at the latest) today. I was super busy banging some work out out this morning but now i’m crawling up the walls.
About six weeks ago, my dad had a growth removed from his mouth. He was really worried it was cancer but after two weeks of no news from the pathologist, the doctor reassured him by saying: ” no news is good news.” I was ( obviously) very relieved. This was at the same time that I found out my aunt was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer with a terrible prognosis. I remember feeling so grateful my dad was ok and feeling terrible for her and her family.
It turns out my dad does have cancer. The first pathology report came back negative but the doctor didn’t like something and sent it back. It’s cancer of the sinuses which is ( from what I have read) very rare and hard to find. He had a pet scan today and we will know more Saturday or Monday. I made the stupid mistake of googling the symptoms and prognosis and it scared the crap out of me. Now, all I can do is wait and hope super hard everything will be ok-something my ” doer” brain finds impossible. I also got the news yesterday that my uncle ( my dad’s older brother) also has cancer. When it rains it pours-Fuck cancer!