It’s hard to know how to start this. My mom asked me yesterday to pull the curtain back for all of you, reveal the reality of our situation. Since all of this started three years ago, she has been so transparent on here about the difficulties she is facing–the setbacks, her fears, the ways she copes. But when, on January 14th, we found out that the cancer had spread into her brain, our first reaction was to circle the wagons. This has always been her greatest fear. While her body has been ravaged by both the illness and the treatment for it in the last three years, her mind has been a safe space, free of disease, able to allow her to continue with her work, go on with her life as usual. She is a warrior, and physical pain is not unfamiliar to her. But this was something different. We pulled in close, and I was intentionally vague in my first post to you all at the end of January.
This week we asked for no visitors, because while the physical aspect of rehab is difficult, it’s the mental, the emotional, that is far more challenging. But she asked me yesterday to let down the barrier, to show the truth to you all, because we do want you to come visit. But you need to know that when you do, this is different than it ever has been before. This is the hardest thing she has dealt with, as someone who is no stranger to dealing with hard things. Many have commented in the past few years that she hasn’t ever really looked sick–that is no longer true. The pictures I posted earlier this week were taken at the beginning of her steroid boost, which lasted a few days and has now faded.
It’s terrifying to face this. There’s more to say in that regard, but I struggle to find the words to do so. Sometimes the fear and grief is overwhelming, for all of us. Some moments are better than others for her, and those are so, so precious.
The weekends are slow at Southern Hills, and are a good time to visit. Her therapy each day is intense, but generally over around 4. Please, as I requested before, text or call me before you come up. For now we will try to keep visits brief, to conserve her energy.