Where I'm Too Tired to Talk About Cancer and Hospitals Anymore

Here’s a fun little graphic that amused me.

Things are… well, things are going here.  The basic rundown is that Victoria got a cancer diagnosis that has been both optimistic and pessimistic (current state: optimistic?) and has had two surgeries this month, several ER visits and a stay at a Sioux Falls hospital pediatric unit.  She’s in pain and not in the best spirits, though things are better than a few days ago when she was sobbing and shaking from the pain and we were just trying to make it through the night and get some answers.

Alex has been to the ER once and I’m pretty sure he has Celiac Disease but I’ve screwed up his chances for diagnosis by taking him off gluten a couple of months ago in order to help make him healthy.  A nice nurse gave him macaroni and cheese the other day and he had instant intense stomach pain and headaches that lasted for days.  He is currently feeling pretty crappy and sick, and I feel completely overwhelmed in taking care of him and have zero confidence in any doctors to give me direction.

Then there was the night Jack woke up delirious and feverish, ranting about his head being upside down and tunneling through our second floor.  I got him into a bath, gave him Tylenol and mothered him through the night because I just couldn’t bear the thought of another trip to the ER.

Fiona is fighting a cold and cough. She has been in my arms nearly nonstop through the latest medical ordeal, keeping me company in Victoria’s hospital room and in the empty waiting room while Victoria had her latest surgery and Daryl was home taking care of the other kids.  Sometimes it helps to have a small toothless girl to just squeeze really tight.

I’ve been sick for 3 weeks and have a hard time standing upright. I can’t stop coughing, occasionally coughing until I throw up.

Daryl has been fighting off an illness because frankly we just don’t have the time or energy for one more person to be sick.  He and I just pretend we’re not sick and keep going.

We got a new steel roof this month and it took just about every spare cent we had, and then we ended up needing lots more spare cents for the crises that kept occurring.  This was just not the month to have that worry on top of everything else.  And since I haven’t had time to write my usual amount for Examiner.com, my earnings are way down and I’ll have a much lower paycheck than usual this month, when I need extra to help take care of everybody’s needs and try to make a little magic for all of us who need it so much right now.

We are all feeling isolated, overwhelmed and just plain terribly sad.

But right now I have a baby flailing in my lap, Victoria needs her pain meds and I need to find a way to make easy, healthy, tasty, gluten free, dairy free food to please 6 people when our cupboards are full of things like red lentils and Amish sour kraut.

And I mostly just want to curl into a ball and cry for several years.  And I wish I had a mother or a father or a sister or someone here to lean on who didn’t need to lean on me.

It turns out I wasn’t too tired to talk about hospitals and cancer.  I was just tired of not being able to say how I’m really feeling.

Time to put on my Mary Poppins hat.  I’m just taking things one breath at a time.


13 thoughts on “Where I'm Too Tired to Talk About Cancer and Hospitals Anymore

  1. I’m sending you all the strength I can. You can do this. If there’s anyone who can it’s you. You are a rock Alicia. And I know rocks need to crumble too sometimes and that’s okay. I’m thinking of you and hoping for the best for V and all of you. If you need to vent anytime you know how to reach me.


  2. Take the red lentils and boil with water. Add coconut milk and a bit of hot sauce or curry sauce. Steam whatever complimentary veggies you have. Toss those into the lentils. Serve over rice. Easy curried Lentils. So sorry this is happening and so glad you could vent here. Sending health and healing vibes your way.


  3. Wow, how very hard for your family. Moms seem to be the ones who have to bear everyone’s pain and do it all the time without feeling tired or complaining. Truth is, we are human and there is only so much we can take before we need to cry, rant, vent or just sleep.

    I pray for strength for your family in these turbulent times. It’s not always rainbows in our lives, but it usually takes a storm to see the rainbow. Try to find a way to rest and take care of yourself so you can tend to everyone else too.


  4. I wish I lived nearby so I could come and give you a break. And a big squeezy hug. But all I can do is give you a virtual one – {{{{{{{{HUGS}}}}}}}


  5. I’ve been following and loving your writing for a couple of years now. I am so sorry to hear about the unimaginable stress your family is under and I am sending tons of positive energy, strength, and healing your way.


  6. i’m not a stalker. i met you once at jeffer’s petrogylphs when we had first moved to MN, we now live in SD. last Thursday after a dr appt we stopped at one of the SF goodwill stores, we were just leaving when i saw a delightful family that i thought looked familiar. driving home i thought i bet that was magic and mayhem. please don’t sit in the waiting room alone again, i can come and sit with you. rmjaej@yahoo.com


    • I’d love to meet up (again!) sometime when we’re in SF again! I hope I won’t have too many more times sitting alone in waiting rooms, but it’s nice to know there’s someone who’d come join me. 🙂


  7. You don’t know me, but I read your blog and I feel like I know your family. I’m so sorry. My thoughts are with you.


  8. I am following your since a few months and I am sorry to hear about the illnesses in your family.
    I am sending you good vibes and hope everything will be OK in the end.
    Big hugs
    Juliette (from France, so forgive the English…)


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