Monday, December 19, 2011

Moles, Mine Fields and Mazes

December 18, 2011
  Have you ever played Whack A Mole at a carnival? A mole pops its head up out of a hole and you try to whack it with a paddle but there are many holes and many moles and as soon as you whack one another takes its place. You just can't seem to ever get ahead of the game. Well, that is kind of like my life at the moment. One invasive mole after another, popping up and mocking me, go ahead whack me they say but I'll just call for reinforcements. I guess life is full of such menaces and I am sure we are not the only people to be subjected to their intrusive antics, it just seems that way. Okay, time to leave the fairgrounds and get back into the game of life. 
  Keith is having a very good day, still tiring easily but seeming much more like himself. I overheard him on the phone today and for the first time since his surgery the quality and timbre of his voice was normal. No breathlessness or sounding like he is on the brink of laryngitis. Perhaps this is a fluke and tomorrow his voice will slip back into a bronchial whisper but for now he's good.

December 19, 2011
  What was that I said, yesterday, about a fluke? He is not having such a good day today. We had to go to the WCI for blood work, routine for chemo patients, and the results showed his levels were quite low. His Oncologist put him on an anti-biotic to ward off any chance of infection. We headed home and he got into his recliner and promptly fell asleep while I set off for the pharmacy to pick up his prescription. After a few hours of rest, some liquids and his medicine he now seems to be feeling much better. I can tell you one thing none of this has affected his appetite, at all, and that's a good thing because who knows what the coming weeks may bring. 

  Time to check on my mom, who as you may or may not know, has Alzheimer's, be back shortly. Well, I just made sure all of her Christmas cards were filled out and stuffed with the gift cards she wanted me to pick up for her, so now she won't fret about that again, until tomorrow when she'll get that frazzled expression and ask me what she is going to do about Living with a parent with this disease is like trying to walk across a mine field, wearing a blindfold, at night. Emotions run the gamut from giddy to angry in a matter of seconds and sometimes there is very little that can be done other than to wend your way through the obstacle course of explosives and pray you make it out safely. Tonight, my poor mom was feeling very sad about Christmas and the fact that all of her children won't be together, it was heart breaking. She seems to be more childlike everyday and it is becoming evident that she is slipping deeper into this disease and that the pace is picking up speed. For the first time since we found out she had Alzheimer's, a little over eighteen months ago, I felt totally and absolutely helpless. I've felt frustrated, angry, disturbed and resentful but never helpless. How very sad that this woman who raised seven children and just celebrated her eighty sixth birthday is fading away before my eyes. She said she was going to get in bed and cry because it might make her feel better. I couldn't argue with that, so I kissed her good night and said I'd see her in the morning. A little while later I started back down the stairs to see if she'd fallen asleep but heard no crying and decided it might be best to just leave her alone. So back upstairs I went to check on my other patient. It isn't funny but at the same time, it is! If I don't find some humor in this situation my mom won't be the only one crying.
  Keith has gone to bed. He was still feeling drained and had a temperature of 99.7. We were told that if it gets to 100.4 to call the oncologist immediately. He was feeling sick to his stomach and took one of the anti-nausea pills, which were prescribed before his first chemo and about an hour later he looked and felt better. Before he started feeling better I was becoming quite concerned yet somehow I managed to remain calm, not exactly easy under the circumstances, but I thought it best that at least one person in this house tonight remain functional. 
  Well it is time to get some rest, tomorrow is another day, and hopefully one a little less stressful for all of us. As Keith and I travel through this maze of uncertainty there are two things we can count on, everything will remain unpredictable but more importantly, God will have his hand on us, keeping us steady no matter how mercurial the road ahead. 


  1. Marlene! Thank you for your blog. I know that God has his hands on you both. What a testimony! God can see down the road, around the corner and around the bend. He is faithful. I know it!!! He is never caught off guard. Keep blogging.... People need it public?

  2. Marlene, there are rarely any "words" another can offer in these kinds of life circumstances that will be of any benefit, and many that will actually come across as harmful. My intent is to do neither.

    I continue my prayer for both you and Keith, and all others concerned in these ever-present battles before you. I, myself was reminded the other day ... Faith is not the absence of turmoil it is in knowing the truth that God is with you in the center of the turmoil.

    He will never leave nor forsake you. In your weakness His strength is made the strongest that you need. You are not alone. Reach out to any and all of the support system around you and allow them to be blessed by helping you.

    May God's presence be a tangible experience you have every day. May His strength be your for the taking. May His peace be your night clothes, and May the truth of His unending love and care for you be an assured truth you believe each moment.

    With love and continued prayers,
    Krikit Murphy

  3. Thank you both for your kind words. I am in desperate need of prayer.