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I just don't understand???


ztweb

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OK...this all weighs so heavy on my heart! My dad just finished his second round of chemo (of 4-6 total), and again, it is like it is his fear of getting sick that is breaking him, not actually being sick, or the chemo itself.

Dad has always been the active one, and I don't want to be selfish, and wish him active again for me, by any means. But, I want to feel like he is atleast somewhat of his old self. I want to support him, no matter what, but I want to encourage him to use his body, release the fear, and live whatever it is he has left.

Dad is a statistic himself. His sclc was dx really early, before any mets, and his tumor had obviously shrunk from the first chemo session...we saw it on the xray. Things are looking great for him. We all have so much hope, a strong faith, and the will to beat this cr#$ He was so hopeful when he left the clinic. But...when nighttime comes, and he has to go to bed, taking pretzels with him to keep something in his tummy during the night, I think the fear is what gets him down.

He is coming up on his "low" for blood counts, and that in itself makes him fearful. Are there any signs of when he is actually low? I try to keep the grandkids (walking germs I call them!!) away during the low but since we don't know exactly when that is, how can I keep him safe???I am afraid to death that he will get sick, because that is his biggest fear.

I know I am not the one with cancer, so it may not be fair for me to think this way, but I just want him to live everything he has rather than walk on eggshells...does this make sense? Any suggestions?

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I hear what you saying. But like you said, your not the one with cancer and maybe his fear is just too overwhelming for him to be his old self again.

I was a caregiver to both parents with LC and they too changed. How could they not. They were told that this disease was most likely going to kill them and soon.

Give him time to adjust and realize the chemo can work. He can live a long life. Its in his head that he is sick and he has to work through it.

just my opinion

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Dear Ztweb,

In my case, I worried the most during treatment and also when the CAT scan times roll around. I think everyone here would agree with that. It's normal to worry. However, as time passes, the worrying has gone down quite a bit with me. I just had my 4 year anniversary; please tell Dad there are SCLC survivors and there is no reason why he can't be one too.

I try to distract myself with music or talk with friends when I start to worry. Please read my bio and pass it on to your Dad to give him hope.

Joanie ((()))

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My Mom was very active before her dx. Even after dx she stayed active. She had 6 rounds of chemo and she didn't let it slow her down or get her down. After her 1st round, she was out playing golf within a week. I really think that kept her going. It wasn't until after her 4th round of chemo, that it took her a little longer to bounce back, but she always continued on. She was amazing, and normal life, at least for my Mom was possible during chemo.

I understand your fear and your Dads fear. Every thing about lung cancer is scary. So many unknowns. Try and talk to him, just be with him and know I', praying for peace for both of you.

Patty

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I would be careful around your dad at all times during treatment in terms of germ magnets. I used alot of lysol wipes and kept my son away from my dad during his low times- sometimes he'd stand in the doorway of the room and just wave at grandpa from a distance until I was sure he was germ-free! :wink:

It may be difficult for you to tell if your dad's counts are low if he isn't being active. With my dad, the low counts made him tired, sleep more and dehydration always accompanied his low counts. I would do the skin test to see if dehydration was starting.

I often saw some regularity in patients with low blood counts...ie: if it got low on that particular chemo, it would always run low while on that chemo. Arenesp and procrit help and blood transfusions help when the counts are extremely low.

But I am NOT a doctor, so check with your dad's doctor.

I don't think there is a way to help him around the "fear". He just has to go thru it, in his own way at his own pace. There will come a time when he wants to participate in life again!

Prayers for you both,

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OK...so now my Dad has a head cold, and I feel terrible, like my 6 month old preemie may have given it to him...he is going into his low...do you think we need to be more concerned than normal????

Normal??? What is normal these days?

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I remember when I first got the news of my cancer, I was felt like my body had let me down. Up to that point I had had an unshakable confidence in my health. Getting cancer made be unsure. Maybe your dad is going through something like that. I took lexapro for a while and it helped me get back on track in spite of the fact that my body had "learned" how to make cancer. Hopefully your dad will pull out of it and get some confidence back.

If your dad is doing chemo, a head cold is something to be concerned about. He should be sure to let his doctor know that he has a cold.

Don M

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Please don't feel guilty about what may or maynot have originated from your sweet baby. There are germs abundant on every surface of our lives to worry about them all would drive us nuts, and to assume you are the bearer of germs will keep you away from dad when what you both need is each other.

With low counts, the most obvious symptom is just intense fatigue. And if your father is low, having a head cold is an issue to be concerned with. Any infection or virus without the proper anti-bodies to fight it is difficult. That being said though, I have to tell you my Keith has had 4-5 colds or flus in the past 3 years while doing chemo, and they have never been a problem. We were always told, when feeling poorly, check his temperature every day, even a few times a day. If his temperature ever goes to 100.3 or higher, it is time to go in to the ER and let them give antibiotics and monitor him. When the white counts are too low you can't fight the smallest things so catch them early by monitoring temp so the hospital can fight them for you.

Also, the severe anxiety your dad must be feeling is so difficult. I know that for myself I take lexapro and wellbutrin and most days I still feel like pulling the covers over my head and staying in bed all day. And I'm not even the LC patient. I so admire those who are in this fight and are able to get up and hit it head on. But it is so so very hard. Many here get help from the pharmaceutical world. No one should have to face these fears ever, and if they per chance do, they deserve all the help medically available. Ask your dad's onc to prescribe him an anti-anxiety drug. I know for Keith it made the difference of having nightmares and getting no sleep to being at least restful at night. It also helped control the tears and the panic attacks he was having. He was able to get back to more of his old self. He takes Celexa.

Sending you and dad lots of love and warm caring thoughts.

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Make sure to check on neulasta to increase White Blood Cell counts for Immune system and Aranesp for Red Blood Cells For energy levels. Saying Prayers

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