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I just stumbled upon this discussion. The bulk of it is from 8/2022. It is now 8/2023. It is really timely for me. My daughter (age 42) has Stage 4 breast cancer. She has been fighting this for about a year and a half. The fight has included chemo, labs and PET scans to monitor. The goal was to get to and remain in remission. This happened once but the last PET scan (in May) showed this is no longer the case. She is currently undergoing a second round of chemo. The first time there was a specific number of chemo sessions. This time it is an IV infusion every 3 weeks (an indefinite number for an indefinite amount of time). The side effects are worse and harsher this time. The next PET scan is 8/16.

My son-in-law is hard working to provide for the family (usually a good thing) but he’s gone overboard. Job requires a lot of commuting throughout the state and he is gone for days at a time. When he’s not working he disappears fishing all hours of the night or sits in a bar with buddies. They have three kids ages 12, 9 and 7. The kids have special needs diagnoses and are a serious challenge on a good day.

My trouble with all this is being the mama & the grandma. I am sad, mad and upset that this is happening to my child. It is scary to consider that she could pass before me. That should never happen, losing a child even if it is an adult! My girl had a complete melt down about a week or two ago. Called sobbing that she can’t do this anymore, can’t fight anymore, that her husband and children are “selfish shit heads”, that there is no help or hope…..

Of course I asked “how can I help?” This girl is a tough survivor. After she calmed down enough to breathe and could be understood while talking she forged a plan and asked for help. She had chemo yesterday 8/10 and is trying to work today 8/11 before the side effects kick in (nausea, diarrhea and extreme fatigue). She and her husband are taking the kids to his family in the neighboring state for a week of care taking. This forces an overnight road trip just the two of them. Hopefully some much needed communication and planning will ensue 8/12 – 13. She asked my husband & I to come 8/14 to spend the week. We plan to help with household, laundry, shopping, cooking, yard work, gardening, technology tasks she needs help with; plus schedule some fun things that she might like to do. Each summer I like to take each grandkid for a week at a time to treat them 1:1 to whatever they would like. It is great fun, gives them a break from siblings and parents plus spoils them a bit. I call it “————-(insert kid’s name) week”. This summer it will be “daughter week” and will take place at her house (not grandma’s). She said she just really needs to be home this week. She wants to work at her two part time jobs as much as she can, has 3 other appointments to tend to plus her PET scan. The mom in me wants her to slow down and rest but given her situation and that she has said what she wants to happen I don’t want to stand in her way. I just pray we can be there, spend time with her, and help as needed.

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Replies to "I just stumbled upon this discussion. The bulk of it is from 8/2022. It is now..."

Oh Cheryl (@cehunt57), this is heart breaking. You all really have your hands full. Her husband may not know how to process everything that their future may hold, especially the thought of caring for the children. I hope the two of them are able to have some honest discussions, and soon. I'm so glad you are able to support her. While she really wants/needs support from others too, at least you are able to show her love and support. As you know, focusing on her health is most important right now. Being stage IV, has she looked into social security disability? If she's eligible, it may take away some of the stress of two jobs.