October 23, 2008


My grandfather is dying.

I know, not exactly the most uplifting way to start a blog post, but I might as well come out with it.

It's not like this is new news. Mere days after my Nana passed away last year, my Papa was diagnosed with lung cancer. The fact that we're almost a year later and he's still with us is a huge blessing, but it's difficult at the same time. After his first round of chemotherapy nearly killed him, he opted not to take the second round. Well, as can be expected, it's getting worse.

He was admitted to the hospital on Saturday for breathing problems and stomach/chest pain, and they sent the scope down and found nothing in his esophagus or stomach, so they concluded that the tumors in his lungs and in the abdominal wall are likely growing and subsequently causing more pain and difficulty breathing.

So now he has 3 options:

1. He can take radiation, and the risks involved.
2. He can take a medication that's $3200 a month, and not guaranteed to improve anything or extend his life.
3. He can do nothing.

I honestly don't know what to think. It breaks my heart. I just pray and ask God to take away Papa's pain and suffering...however He so chooses.

I think what is the most upsetting to me (and not just about Papa but also about Operaboy's grandfather, who is going to be 93 next May and is bedridden) is to see the shell of such a strong man. I mean here are two men who, respectively, laid brick in most of the houses on his street and the other was a doctor in the war and had a family practice for years....and now they need help doing the simplest of things, such as bathing and going to the bathroom. It has to be so frustrating and humiliating for them and it breaks my heart.

I also don't like being here for it. I know that sounds so selfish and tacky, but it's true. When Nana died, and when Operaboy's uncle died last year, I wasn't there when they died. I was hundreds, if not thousands of miles away. I was able to grieve on my own, and handle the news and process it on my own before going to the services.

Here, I'm right in the middle of every breaking development, every new story, etc. And I hate it. I don't know how to handle it.

Well, that's not true. I do know how I would handle it. I just don't know how to handle it when my family handles things in a much more dramatic way (picture lots of negativity and weeping and gnashing of teeth), and I'm much more internal about it. Therefore I appear cold and heartless, which is just not fair.

I look for anything positive in the situation, and refuse to give someone up as a bad job just because of what a doctor says. That helps me. Even when he dies, I'll be able to find so much peace knowing that he's back with his Betty (my nana) and his Lord. It's not to say that I won't be sad. Of course I will be. It freaking sucks if you want to know how I really feel.

I'm just having a hard time processing all of this. I know this post is kind of verbal diarrhea (sp?), so I promise to post again soon with more better stuff.


  1. Mandy - you are a wonderful granddaughter to your Papa and a wonderful daughter to your Dad. Knowing that you are there to support both of them through this emotional time means so much to them. I will continue to pray for your family. I hope that you all find some peace and comfort knowing that he's back with his beloved and the Lord.

  2. I am really sorry opra wife! If there is anything I can do you know where I am. Just call, email, text, something and I am there!

  3. I love you! I know everything is going to be ok. And like you said, it does SUCK, but when it's all said and done, your papa will be with your Nana AND with the Lord.

    I'm here for you if you need me