Posted by: cg00n | April 25, 2008

April 23: We need a plan

A back at school, P in panic mode, very jittery this morning. Both of us were clinging to one another for support. However, we managed to get to the doctor’s by noon and had a very useful conversation during the drive. We are both committed to idea of “a good life, a good death”. My biggest source of fear and anxiety is the pain and discomfort associated with (especially) the final stages of the disease. We decided that the sensible thing to do is to plan for the worst and hope for the best. Since about the only thing we can predict at present is “the worst” I am investigating hospices and palliative care prospects both here, back where we lived a few years ago near to long-time friends and other emotional support and also in Oregon.

The doctor was able to prescribe us each some anti anxiety drugs which seem to work like magic. In spite of making me slightly drowsy I feel so much better now than at any time in the last few days. A performed very well at a piano competition tonight. She is coping remarkably well with this new situation although it is clearly hard for her.

At the end of the day the plan looked like this:

I need effective medication or relief from depression and anxiety; without this I will be totally unable to cope. I will undertake the first surgery and lymph node biopsies to see what this reveals. I will continue with chemotherapy (or whatever) if required on the condition that the side effects can be controlled so as not to produce excessive pain or discomfort. As long as I can feel as though I am contributing something to the family, however little that might be, I am content to go on trying as long as I am physically and mentally comfortable. I am also content to leave the decision as to when I should be transferred to a hospice to my family.

Do I sound like a total wuss? I mean, what is all this about “comfort” and “lack of pain”? The truth is I am not a masochist and I have nothing I want to prove to the rest of the world with respect to how tough I am. I am not that attached to life. It is OK, but I think it’s overrated. Ultimately there are far worse things in life than death, so why prolong the agony?  P is entirely with me on this.  We both felt greatly relieved when we came to it.

I think we’re making progress.



  1. I think if I was confronted with your facts scenario, I would write the exact same thing.

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