Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Close Shaves

Burma Vita often posted drive-safely rhymes:

Keep well
To the right
Of the oncoming car
Get your close shaves
From the half-pound jar
Burma Shave

Well, it’s worse than we thought.  The tumor on Ellen’s right kidney had devoured the organ and had grown to grotesque size, pushing itself into the nooks and crannies of her abdomen.  It was sending a probe up a major artery towards her heart when the surgeon opened her.  He had to halt and call in a thoracic surgeon who cracked open her chest, clamped off the artery, and the cancerous “finger” and a surround of blood clots was gently pulled back down and out.  Now we wait while the lab analyzes the tumor.  I should talk to an oncologist this week and maybe find out where we are and where we’re going.  We’re both shocked, two weeks ago everything was fine, there was not a whisper that something was very, very wrong.

Meanwhile, she’s recovering well.  She was moved out of ICU yesterday, still somewhat adrift on Fentanyl.  Yesterday morning she had her first solid food – I had to feed it to her, she was still floating on pain meds and her fingers were swollen and clumsy with fluids.  Yesterday evening she was sitting up and feeding herself a cup of frozen yogurt, talking, making jokes.

I think I’ve written one sentence since Friday, I can’t think about anything else.


Linda O. Johnston said...

So sorry you're both going through this, Monica.

Anonymous said...


Monica Ferris said...

Now, suddenly it's all turned around. Her surgeon came to her room while I was there with startlingly great news: He got all of the tumor! The lab results indicated "Clear Margins," meaning it was intact, no broken pieces to wander off and take root somewhere else. She can come home in a few days - no chemo or radiation. I sent her surgeon a big bouquet of lilies. Life is again good!

Betty Hechtman said...

Monica, that is wonderful news! Now you can think about writing again.

Beverly Button said...

Monica, I am so happy for you! I hope Ellen sails through her recovery and all is well.