June 26, 2015

      Back to the hospital.


      The last two years have been … eventful … for our family. My dad has been battling not only prostate cancer, but a year and a half ago they removed lung cancer from one of his lungs (that year I was doing a 10 on 10 project and documented the day here). A few months ago he started having mild chest pains and went to see the cardiologist – next thing we knew he was having heart surgery within a week. Three heart stents later and he got past another hurdle.


      Part of his treatment for his prostate cancer includes full body scans every six months and they have been watching a few more spots in his lungs. And recently the hormone replacement therapy he is on isn’t working as well as it had in the past and these spots in his lungs are growing again.


      So today we are back at the hospital while he is getting one of the spots that is on the surface of his lung removed. We are hoping it is prostate cancer, because he will qualify for a new immuno-therapy treatment if it is.

      And today is the day where my brothers and I successfully surprised my parents and it was awesome.


      Mark moved to California and we have been telling my dad for weeks now that we will keep him updated on the progress of his surgery via phone and text and that he is really sorry that he couldn’t take time off a new job to be here in person. Little did they know, Mark pretty much booked a ticket home as soon as we heard the surgery date. Both my parents were completely taken aback when they saw him in the waiting room, such an unexpected gift at the time my dad needed it the most.


      I would like to say the day passed uneventfully – the first part of it was expected … sneaking all of us back to pre-op to wait for him to be taken in. They called us quickly to let us know they were starting surgery and then the surgeon came out within about forty five minutes. Operation was a success, but he was still very unsure of what type of cancer they removed.


      Now over an hour and a half afterwards, we still hadn’t heard anything on getting him to recovery. Finally a nurse came to get my mom. Then the boys and I waited another hour before my mom came back. My dad was having an adverse reaction to the anesthetic with the medication in his stents and every time he relaxed enough to fall asleep, he would stop breathing. So they put him on a breathing machine for several hours until the anesthesia wore off enough so that he was able to maintain breathing on his own. A bit scary, but he is okay.


      Within twenty four hours he was released from the hospital and home to recover – much better than the four days it took him with the last surgery!


      I am always a fan of black & white for any time we are in a hospital … it just seems more appropriate. Below are the photos of us hanging out while we wait for him to get wheeled back. Once again they tried to remove his wedding ring – even did the trick where you tie a floss-like tape around your finger to pull it off, but it wasn’t budging. I guess almost fifty years of marriage means that sucker really is on there for good! Last photo is of my dad in his recovery room doing great. Once he could breathe again, he was his happy-go-lucky obnoxious self … making us remember fondly that not breathing meant he couldn’t talk ;-) (TOTALLY KIDDING Dad!!!)