Aside from getting ready to get married, and silly things like fixing the curtains, the big thing we’ve been dealing with is our family matriarch’s health woes. Last month, David’s mother (who is also in her 80’s, like Nana) fell & broke her shoulder and did something to her foot that it is still swollen from. She says she’s getting better all the time, and the doctors have cleared her to travel across the country, which she is determined to do. She had been sleeping in a chair, since getting up from laying down hurt, and now is back in bed. She’s also walking around more , so hopefully she will be healed enough to enjoy herself while she’s here.
And now, Nana has cancer. Again. In 1998 she had uterine cancer, which she beat the hell out o. This time, it’s something called Merkel cell carcinoma, a monster type of skin cancer that is not the garden-variety “cut it out and be done with it” type. Tomorrow she’s going in to have it cut out from where it’s been growing on her cheek since Christmas, when we thought it was just a pimple. (We’re Italian. We’re greasy til the end. Being in your 80’s doesn’t disqualify you from acne. On the upshot, it does prevent wrinkles.) Since Merkel cell is “highly aggressive” and prone to spreading, they are cutting a wide berth around it, which will require a skin graft from her leg, and then most likely radiation.
I’m driving them to the hospital, and picking Nana up when she’s discharged on Wednesday. That’s the day Papa has his appointment with a lung specialist, which he’s been waiting for for 4 months, to find out why he’s short of breath all the time and what he can do about it. (Who makes a 90 year old wait 4 months for an appointment? I could rant all day about how much I hate living in a dead zone for decent doctors, citing examples like my grandmother’s dermatologist or my ass of an allergist who happens to be the only game in town, but I’m not leaving until Nana & Papa do, so I guess it’s not worth the rant…)
If you’re a pray-er, we’d be grateful for yours. If you’re a sender-of-good-energy, that’s welcome too. Cause really, she’s awesome & I want her to be around forever, or at least to be happy and not have to be dealing with cancer’s bullshit in her remaining years.