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No Hope

Monday, April 29, 2013

When you are diagnosed with cancer, almost always there is some hope involved. Some people even get to hope for a cure, or at least no recurrence in 5 years--which is considered a cure I believe. Some cancers, especially in Stage Four, leave you with nothing to hope for. At least if we had caught Du's cancer before it spread to his bones, we could have taken out the prostate and had a cure. But because his previously low PSA tests were, unbeknownst to us, evidently in the 1-2% that are unreliable, we had no idea his enlarged prostate was actually cancer, and now we are left with this devastating diagnosis and NO HOPE.

I guess I AM hoping--hoping for more time with him; hoping for him to stay healthy for a long time; hoping for the shots to do their work and keep the cancer at bay; hoping he can make it to retirement, which is still 4 1/2 years away. He has worked for over 40 years, doesn't he deserve some time to enjoy retirement?? The odds are not in his favor. Average life expectancy with a Stage 4 prostate cancer diagnosis is only 4 years. As I always say, some live longer, some don't live that long, it's only an average. We are not allowed to hope for a cure--a cure is not to be for my Du.

It is doubly scary because if he isn't working, we have no health insurance. I retired one month before he went to the hospital and was ultimately diagnosed with cancer. So my retirement has been pretty messed up too. I regret my decision because we could sure use that reassurance of always having health insurance. But I sure don't miss going to work everyday.

Saturday was spent in the bowling alley, Du and the boys bowled the state tournament, nine games in two different houses. Du's last set was his best--650. That makes me think he is still healthy--if he can bowl all day and still have strength left to bowl that well. At least that's what I like to think.

Had a call from some old friends while we were out all day, they wanted to go out to eat. We usually meet up with them for a restaurant date two or three times a year and always enjoy our time together. They are new grandparents, and are very proud of their little granddaughter. We shared pictures, had a good meal, and then Du told them our devastating news. Of course that brought up talk of other old friends who are not well. We are that age--early 60's--and our health is just not as good as it used to be. But we never expected a diagnosis like we got, and today I'm feeling angry, scared and sad. And it just feels so hopeless...
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    The thing is, there is no choice but to take each day as it comes and make that one day the best day ever. If ever there was a reason to live each day in the present, a cancer diagnosis is it. Been there, done that.
    Enjoy today, my friend. The rest will take care of itself.
    1843 days ago
    I know you've read it over and over again Pam, but there is always HOPE!! If you lose hope, it IS over. Du is obviously not giving up or giving in and I know you aren't either. My best friend has a terminal bone barrow cancer (multiple myeloma) and isn't supposed to be with us now but she is still here and fighting. We fight right along side her and pray daily. God IS our only hope. But we have to put legs to our prayers. Hang in there. You and Du and your family are in my prayers.

    1867 days ago
  • CANNIE50
    Oh, Pam, I am so sad for you and your family. I do think it is a hopeful sign that he could bowl all day, and SO WELL! He sounds strong and determined, and so are you, so that is a powerful force between the two of you. I am glad you enjoyed dinner with old friends. I am thinking of you. emoticon
    1875 days ago
    Yeah, there are statistics, but you never can tell what can happen. You DO hear stories all the time about people who were supposed to die in a certain period of time and they are alive years later, Or a cure could come. You just never know.
    1875 days ago
  • QTEALADY20031
    This just must be devastating news and you have not even had time to think. Just take one day at a time. There are many miracles every day and the medications are really helping people. As a nurse I used to have patients tell me "I was suppose to die 10 years ago" and still they were enjoying life. Being retired will give you the time to spend with your husband. Try and think positive each day, trust in God that he will watch over you both every day. You both will be in my thoughts and prayers. emoticon emoticon
    1875 days ago
    Hi, hope this might bring you some hope, I know a couple men that had late stage prostrate cancer and are free today, or should I say in remission. Hopefully his treatments might work and being hopeful might help. Did you get a second opinion? We can always hope for miracles, they do happen today and maybe you'll be blessed with one. emoticon
    1876 days ago
    emoticon There is always hope; miracles still abound. I pray that you and your husband receive yours. You are on our church's prayer list. Bless you...
    1876 days ago
    I understand the devastation of having a loved one with stage 4 cancer. If it helps at all, please know that we were told Tommy probably had 6 to 12 months to live when he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer (it typically progresses very rapidly). That was in September 2009, almost 4 years ago. There have been so many advances in treatment that many cancer patients are living for years longer, so there is always hope for many more years together. We are thankful for every day we have together and are enjoying our lives. I hope you and your husband have many, many more years of happiness together.

    1876 days ago
    I am so sorry your family is going through these hard times with Du's cancer. After reading your blogs I always want to give my DH a big hug. Must do it while we still can.
    1876 days ago
    So sorry that you're going thru this (that's the plural "you"' for you & Du).
    1876 days ago
  • RDEE22
    Hi I do not know you and I can't even imagine what you are going through, yet I feel for you so much. Hang in there, I believe that miracles do happen and I hope one is coming your way. emoticon
    1876 days ago
    I know that you will have days of ups and also down days. Just look at each day as a gift. It sounds like right now he has the energy to do the memorable things that you both can enjoy. I know you will be concentrating on him and helping him through all this but also make sure to take care of yourself.
    1876 days ago
    1876 days ago
    You are walking a very long and rough road. Please do not give up yet. Work
    each day to enjoy and reinforce your feelings to each other. Staying positive
    will help your DH hang on as long as he can.
    1876 days ago
    Hugs to you and your family. Keep hoping. The doctors always give you the worst case scenario. You have some time together, make the most of it.
    1876 days ago
    I know that you feel the devastating news of stage 4 is the end. But there is always hope. The hope and belief and positive thinking that the treatment will prolong a quality of life . That you will share many more years. maybe not as you planned but together.
    I mentioned once befor hat my nieces husband has bone cancer. He gets tired and doesn't work. But they still go, take trips to Italy come to all the family functions . He's 60 or so and has been with the cancer for the last 8 years or so. There are drugs available now that weren't around years ago.
    By not working you have more time to spend with your husband. Although I believe he's still working.??
    Take care of yourself Pam, make sure you have all the checkups that you should.
    Make the most of the time you have. Be strong, stay positive.
    I will keep you in my prayers.
    Hugs Tisha emoticon emoticon
    1876 days ago
    Please remember to take one day at a time. Try to enjoy your life with your husband.
    If you need to "talk" we are here for you. Be strong for your husband and yourself.
    Hugs, Jeanne
    1876 days ago
    1876 days ago
  • NEWME654
    I'm so sorry you're feeling hopeless. It's such a terrible feeling. All those statistics can be daunting, but try to be hopeful that your Du will be the one that pushes the averages upward! Maybe it's not a great idea, but is there any way you can rescind your retirement and maybe go back part-time with benefits? I know that sounds crazy, but I used to work in county government and it was allowed within a certain period of time. I know someone that did it specifically for health reasons/insurance. God bless you and your family. Lynne.
    1876 days ago
    I am so sorry! That being said...I would continue to have hope! There are unexplained changes, remissions etc. Have you considered anything alternative...including diet, guided imagery, etc? I do not have answers but am saying to you what I would say to myself, friends, etc. I will continue to send my thoughts and prayers to you and see hope!
    Love & Hugs
    P.S. When do you qualify for Medicare?
    1876 days ago
  • KAREN608
    Praying for you. I know two men that had stage 4 and are still alive and doing, and I hope your Du is just like them.
    1876 days ago
    My heart, prayers and thoughts go out to you. May God give you the strength to face the future. I think all of us should live like today is our last, and love like there is no tomorrow. We are given no guarantees in life......Lord knows I would be asking for a refund or two myself.. HUGS to you both!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1876 days ago
  • LINDAK25
    You are in my prayers.
    1876 days ago
    I am so sorry to hear that. My Dad didn't know he had prostate cancer until it was already in his bones. From the time we found out until he was gone was a long, but all too short, bitter-sweet period of time. It makes you so much more aware of being thankful for every moment you get with that person, and with everyone around you. But it's so very hard. My prayers are with you and your family.
    1876 days ago
    You seem like a strong person, but I know you will have days that you don't feel strong, and just want to cry. Hang in there and try to enjoy each day as it comes.
    1876 days ago
    I'm really sorry about all of this. I don't know what stag prostate cancer my grandpa had, but they found it when I was pregnant with our first daughter and he passed when she was 17 or 18. He never had surgery, due to his weight he couldn't health wise. It went into remission until the last 6 months. I will be praying for you both. emoticon
    1877 days ago
    I know how hopeless you must feel but never count him out. I've seen some pretty amazing miracles from stage 4 survivors. All you can do is cherish every moment you have with him and hope to get to that point where it's considered "borrowed" time. In the end, none of us knows how long we have, cancer or not, unfortunately his situation is just a reminder to live every day to its fullest whether you want to travel or bowl or enjoy a night of television with your honey.

    1877 days ago
    You have your up days and your down days, there are days of strength and days where you just can't really feel strong about this anymore .. I know it is tough, I know you are struggling and hurting at the unfairness of it all, at all there is to worry about but I also know that you appreciate the days that you are blessed with, all the days and years that you have had and the days and years still to come. You appreciate how lucky you that Du is still healthy enough to bowl and have some fun . .

    My thoughts and prayers are with you every day and I am sending an angel your way to comfort you when you most need it.

    1877 days ago
  • KERRYG155
    But hope (and prayer) are all we have in this life! All we can do is our best and enjoy everything we can now as we never know how much time we have here on planet Earth. I'm glad Du is still enjoying the bowling. I spent a lot of time at Hollywood Bowl as a kid but haven't bowled since I messed up my knee years ago. Glad you got to enjoy dinner with your friends. I think that working as long as he is able will be best for Du-keeps him busy and not just concentrating on the cancer. Hopefully he can take some time every so often so you two can do some more trips together but that insurance is so darn important.
    1877 days ago
    I am so sorry you, Du and your family have to go through this. Take a minute, close your eyes and feel the hug filled with love and support I am sending you. emoticon
    1877 days ago
    emoticon Your job right now is Du. You and he will fight as a Team and Remember ALWAYS that God is in Control and He knows what He is doing -- Especially when it looks as if He is hiding.
    The Pam & Du Team is a Force to be reckoned with!! You are Stronger than you think. Trust that God is walking with you and He sees The Big Picture!
    1877 days ago
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