Friday, January 23, 2009

The worst results ever

Sorry for the lack of creativity in the post title.

We had the results of the MRI from yesterday read to us today. The news was pretty much devastating. The tumor in Brian's head has ALSO become a leptomeningeal tumor and I looked for a good google link for you, but couldn't find one. The leptomeninges work to move the spinal fluid all over the brain and spinal cord. There was particular concern involving the brain stem. Whatever. Go research if you want to. I tired of it after 10 minutes. The primary site of the tumor is also growing. So, educating myself further at this point in time is the last thing I want to do.

What it means is this:

The tumor is growing and spreading and the latest chemo isn't working either. It is time to be done.

Brian didn't "get it" as we were leaving the doctor's office. He was trying to schedule his next appointment and treatment.

I had to explain to him in the car and again at home that the tumor is growing and there is nothing left to do.

He said, he can't do that. He can't do nothing.

I said, Brian, there are no chemos left to try for the stage that your cancer is in. There is no treatment left that is going to take away the cancer that is now spreading into new areas of your brain and possibly your spine.

He said his symptoms weren't that bad to just do nothing. There has to be something else.

I then explained that his symptoms HAVE gotten worse in the last few weeks. I told him he isn't remembering things. He is falling. He is unsteady on his feet. His right hand and arm hang basically limp. His symptoms are worse and when combined with these results, it is time to say enough is enough.


I said I don't know what else there is to do unless you want to try somewhere else in the country with another specialist, but that would require travel which you are not up for and we would most likely get the same response. Brian, the cancer is growing in your brain. Why would you keep trying chemotherapy when it isn't working? Why keep putting it into your body when it grows anyway?

He is mad. Well, A little pissed, he says.

I will tell the boys this weekend, but they know. Anyone who has seen Brian over the last two weeks knows or knew.... except Brian.

I have made the first step for Hospice contact. They are supposed to contact me within a day or two.

I am going to turn over scheduling of meals and cleaning, rides for the kids, playdates, etc. to some friends and/or family. Just give me the weekend to think it through.

The good news is that Brian has not vomited since Wednesday afternoon. We tried a different drug, but it could also be the chemo leaving his system.

So, that is it. We are done. Brian is dying. Maybe weeks. Maybe more. Maybe less. We don't know.

Pray for our peace.

Pray for our acceptance.

Pray that Brian and I can change our conversations more and more about coming to Jesus than fighting to live.

Pray for our boys.

I will keep you posted on how Brian is doing as much as possible. I plan on spending just about every waking moment with him making it beautiful.

If anyone wants to visit us, let me know. Ed and Jan have lots of room. We have lots of room. We don't know how fast Brian will decline.

KEEP BELIEVING with a focus shift to the afterlife.

110 comments:

  1. Angie, I am so sorry. We are both deeply devastated for your family. If there is absolutely anything we can do, please let me know. We love you all.

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  2. This took my breath away. I'm so sorry for the news. I will pray for you, Brian, your boys...

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  3. Angie, the above comment was from Michael and Karen. Tell your boys that our Boys are missing them!

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  4. OH Angie....I'm not sure what I can say to you except we LOVE all of you and will be there for you now, tomorrow, next week...and always...whatever you need...no matter what!!!
    I will continue to pray and pray and pray....and love you.

    I pray you and Brian find what ever time you are granted is time to say everything you both need to say...and just be able to lay next to him...and love him...and pray with him...and just be!!!!

    LOVING and ACHING for you all,

    Kris

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  5. Angie and Brian,

    We are always here for you, no matter what you need/want. Please let us know. I can come up anytime you want me too, with kids or without. I prayer for your peace and acceptance and love you all.

    Mindi

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  6. Angie, Brian

    I am at a loss for words. We knew this was a possibility but remained optimistic for a Miracle. We continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers. God Bless.

    Love Beth, Joe, Sara and Adam.

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  7. My heart aches for you all. I am willing to help in any way I can - just say the word!
    Gretchen

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  8. Oh Angie. I wish there were words. There aren't. Hugs and love. -Karla

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  9. I will include your family in my prayers. I am so sorry that your family is having to go through such a sad situation.

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  10. Angie,
    I've followed your blog for a while now, but don't think I've ever commented. No words I could say can help you at all right now, but just know we have been praying for you all and will continue to pray!!

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  11. I too have been following your blog for a while now, praying for your family daily, and having you in my thoughts all day, every day. Not an hour goes by that I don't think of you and send up a prayer for whatever kind of strength you need. Today, the strength you're demonstrating is beyond anything I can comprehend. I pray that you continue to feel the strength too, and that it is mixed with the peace and beauty you want to spend your time in with your husband.

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  12. Ang, I know there is nothing I can say to you today that I haven't said to you a million times. I am here for absolutely ANYTHING you need!!! I love you all more than you know and am praying for you!!

    May God bless this time you have as a family,
    Shawn

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  13. I read this with a heaviy heart and a sick feeling in my stomach...my prayers are with you - may the Lord strengthen you in this time of great need. I pray for you to squeeze every opportunity out of every moment that you have as a family.

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  14. Angie,
    I am so very sorry, I know how hard this is and there just aren't any words: "sad" was what always came into my mind. I am truly so very sad for you and your family and will continue to pray for your strength and for peace and for Brian's understanding.
    Paige

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  15. I don't blame him for being pissed.

    Your family is totally and completely in my heart.

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  16. Angie, I too have followed your blog since you left St.Albert (we were in LMO together in case you don't remember me) but have never commented before. My heart broke into a million pieces when I read your blog this evening. You have been in my prayers and I will continue to pray for you and your family. I wish we were closer so I could help you out in some way but I will help in the only way I can by praying, praying and praying some more. I will especially pray for you and the boys to have peace when you tell them the news that they knew was coming but hoped wasn't. Love to you all. Jessica

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  17. Angie, Nothing I say could possibly make you feel better. I have read your blog daily and none have compared to this one. I am sorry you have to bear this kind of news. My heart is heavy for you, the boys and Brian. I can't imagine the range of emotions you must be feeling. Please Angie, surround yourself by those who love you (and I know for a fact there are many many). I may not live in Peoria, but I know several people who do, that would love to help you out (including my parents and they are just around the corner). Angie, we will continue our prayers for your family. Hold your family close and treasure every moment you have. God Bless you all! Andrea and Craig Turner

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  18. :( my heart breaks for you and those baby boys.........I pray that your faith remains strong and you and your family find peace within all of this. Let us do whatever we can for you so you are able to savor every moment as a family.
    Love ya,
    Jessica

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  19. Angie- as everyone has said there are no words. I will pray (and pray hard, many times, and outloud) that you and your family are comforted and find peace through what you have ahead of you. Remember God has his plan, even if we dont understand it at the time. Love to you and your family

    Jill Sandifer Bruss

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  20. I am so sorry Angie. I've been following your blog for over a year, and have prayed repeatedly for your family. I will continue to pray for you now.

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  21. Oh, Angie and Brian...
    I don't know you, but through this little bloggy world. But I've been reading for many many months now. I try to comment when I can. But it's amazing how even this small space where you write, can touch so many lives. Brian's life and his illness have touched my life. It has shown me that I never know when someone I love can slip away. I have learned to love harder and more. I have learned not to take things for granted. Thank you for that. God Bless you, and may Brian meet Jesus with open arms. I will pray for that.

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  22. Angie - I am praying for you and your beautiful boys. You are all in my thoughts.

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  23. Praying that you feel God's peace and comfort surrounding you! Cherish the time you have left dear one.

    Jeanette

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  24. This is just heartbreaking to read. You have been in my prayers since the moment I started reading this blog (not sure how long it has been, probably over a year now). I am praying for a peace in your house and your hearts right now... anything at all that I or any of us can do please don't hesitate to ask.

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  25. We love you so much! We are praying for all of you. Please let me know if you need ANYTHING. I will gladly come day or night to help! Love you.
    Jen, Jake, and Mason

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  26. We will be praying for you all.

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  27. Oh sweetie. Please know that your whole family is in my prayers constantly.

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  28. I'm so sorry, so very very sorry. My prayers are yours.

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  29. My mom has no idea about the severity of her tumor condition either. Most times, I just think it's God's tender mercy. You remain in my prayers.

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  30. I'm not able to convey through words just how much my heart aches for your family right now. I am sorry that the ugly C word has touched your family and that there are no other treatments available. I continue to pray that you will be able to feel God carrying you in the palm of his hand through the next phase of this journey. I pray for peace for all of you.

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  31. I'm so sorry, Angie. I don't even know what to say. It breaks my heart that Brian is unaware of things and my heart breaks that you are so aware of all of it. I am constantly praying for you and your family. I am so glad that your have such a strong faith and I am relieved to know that God hears your prayers and ours. God Bless you all!

    Kellan

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  32. Andy and Missy RyanJanuary 24, 2009

    No words will do. Just know that you are in our thoguhts and that we wish you the strength and love to help Brian know its OK to stop fighting and to be at peace. His courage has been an inspiration through this fight as his dignity will be till the end.

    All our love,
    Andy and Missy

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  33. Angie,

    There isn't words. Truly. I am so sorry.

    But know that we will continue to pray, for peace, for acceptance, and for beautiful moments to continuesly fill your home.

    I sit here and admire your strength, your courage and your love.

    Praying.......

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  34. I just found your blog, and as I read it and tears are flowing down my cheeks, I remember how angry we were when the doctors told us that mother, had a brain tumor too, besides breast cancer and there was nothing that could be done except keep her comfortable.
    And the anger my sister had at the doctor who said there was no more chemo.
    I know how hard it is to explain to children and like yous said, "They know"...
    We most definately will keep you in our prayers.
    Praying in Illinois

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  35. I will continue to pray for strength and for peace for you all.

    "Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10

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  36. just like everyone else i come up short on words.

    please know that i am praying for you, the boys and your husband.

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  37. Offering you prayers, especially from me a virtual stranger does not seem to be enough. I pray for your strength, the strength of the people that surround you, and for peace for Brian. (Oh hell, I don't even know you and I am a "bit pissed" too.)

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  38. I'll be praying for you and your family!

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  39. I have came over from Jeanette's blog. I am praying for you and your family. Make every minute count and rest in God's comfort!

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  40. Praying many prayers for you and your family! Peace and acceptance are amoung them!

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  41. I am praying for you & your family. Beck sent me over and I will be honored to pray for you guys.

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  42. My heart aches and breaks for you Angie. You are in my heart and prayers ALWAYS. xoxo.

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  43. My heart is aching for you and your family. Tears came running down my face as soon as I opened your blog today. I am so sorry and I hope you can all find the srength to be at peace. Prayers, as always...

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  44. Oh Honey, I am so sorry. I found you through Kristin and my heart is breaking. I am currently battling cancer myself and I know. I know. Cancer sucks! Please feel free to drop by my blog or shot me an email. Very few people truly understand how much cancer sucks. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Big, huge hugs to all of you.
    Heather
    www.thesnydernews.blogspot.com

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  45. Praying for peace, comfort, and faith for all of you.
    May God give you all strength...

    Love, Kelly

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  46. I don't know you and I don't often leave comments on blogs of people I don't know. I have been following your blog for a couple of months now. I have no words, but I am so sorry. Even though we have never met, I am crying for you and your boys. I will be praying for you as God brings you to mind.

    So sorry - may your next days and weeks with Brian be beautiful as you said.

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  47. I'm visiting from Kristen's. Our prayers are with you & your family. My husband's mom died from a brain tumor when he was just 16. It's so hard to live through. Please stay strong & know that God never promised to make our lives easy just that He would be with us through it all.
    Hugs and prayers from SC.

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  48. You will have my prayers.

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  49. Angie and Brian:
    You know that I love you and would do anything I could to help you, but I want you to know that God loves you even more. He knows your every desire, and He holds you tight. His ways are not our ways. Just keep believing in and trusting Him. Love, Jane

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  50. This is going to be strange as I am a complete stranger to you. I just found this blog and am completly drawn to your family through prayer. Please know that you are all being prayed over. May God show your husband how to teach maybe the most important lesson to his children on how to face death. May God grant you precious, tender moments as husband and wife, and May God bless your children with understanding and continuous love. As your title suggests, Keep Believing!

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  51. Dear Angie,
    You are all in our thoughts and our prayers. May the tender hand of peace be upon you now.

    Cheryl & Paul

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  52. Angie and Brian,

    We are so sorry about Brian. You both continue to be in our prayers. It has been a long journey and your faith and committment is an amazing example to all of us. When we would meet with the two of you as you began this journey we would so admire your faith and committment to each other. Your faith is a gift and we always left feeling like we were the ones receiving instead of us ministering to you. with all of our love and prayers,

    Arlene and Bill Newlin, Littleton Colorado

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  53. you are all in my heart. I hope that most of all you can find a way to help Brian find peace with this - and know that he is surrounded by love.

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  54. You and your whole family have been in my prayers for some time now, and that will most certainly not change. I pray that God provides strength, peace, guidance, understanding, wisdom, solace, grace. May God be with you always. My heart breaks for you. Hang in there.

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  55. I'm praying for all of you. Peace, strength and hugs.

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  56. Prayers for you, Brian and your boys. I honestly don't know what else to say except that I am SO, SO sorry.

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  57. Grandma PamJanuary 25, 2009

    Prayers for your family from Goleta, California.

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  58. There are no words. Just lots of prayers, hugs, and hope that every moment you have left with him is full of love and peace.

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  59. Angie,
    I lost my husband to colon cancer after a five year battle. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Find someone you can talk to about what to expect at the end. Having that made it much easier for me, and I was not afraid. I am grateful for all the time we had together. Hospice was terrific, I can't say enough. My husband wanted to do another round of chemo one week before he died, and I just looked at his nurse when he said it and thought, he doesn't understand what we are telling him. He wanted to keep fighting right till the very end.

    If you don't have someone to talk to who has experienced this before, and want to contact me, please do. One thing I said to him, a few days before he passed, was to tell him, reassure him, that we (the kids and me) would be okay, he knew that, right? In this very tiny voice he answered back, "No, I don't." I reassured him then and told him that he took such good care of us while he was here, that we would be okay. I think it helped him let go.
    Thinking of you...

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  60. Oh Angie, my heart aches for you reading this post. What you are going through is HUGE. I hope that you can spend this time with Brian and the boys and just enjoy this time as a family, as much as possible. You have been so strong through all of this and you are a continual inspiration to me.

    Hospice is a WONDERFUL organization. They helped us so much before my mother-in-law, Karen, passed. They were incredibly supportive, kind, loving and respectful. They were right there answering all of our questions, helping us understand what to expect and how to provide the best care to keep her comfortable at all times.

    I am praying for you and Brian and your boys - to have strength, peace and continued faith in His plan. I think of you so often and will be checking in...

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  61. My heat aches for you and your family you are in our thoughts and prayers!

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  62. Angie, i wish you much strength in the coming days and weeks and that you all find a way to say goodbye and find peace. it is times like this that we realize how strong the heart really is.. i'll pray for you all

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  63. No words, only tears and prayers to a God I must believe is sovereign though there are times my breath catches at what life brings.

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  64. I am so sorry. Of course, you are all in my prayers.

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  65. Oh, how devastating for all of you. I'm so sorry that you had to hear this news. I pray that you find acceptance and happiness in this most impossible of situations.

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  66. Praying for strength for all of you Angie.
    Now comes the hard part but He will give you the strength you need. Day by day.

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  67. Angie - This was so hard for me to read as we went through something similar when my mom was diagnosed with her brain tumer. She was given no choice of treatment that could actually help her out, and we felt like we were completely left out of any decision-making as far as the future was concerned.
    I just want to tell you that you guys are all in our thoughts and our hearts. I can't even begin to imagine how you hold your head up so high, but I am impressed on a daily basis with your love for your family, as well as your love for life itself. You are a very strong woman and I am sure that the strength you have as well as the love of your family will help you through all of this. I for one, will KEEP BELIEVING in you...Suzie

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  68. There aren't any words.

    There just aren't. Just lots of thoughts and lots of prayers . . .

    And lots and lots of I LOVE YOUs.

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  69. Just know that we are here for you...praying. For you, Brian and your boys. Your grace is phenomenal.

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  70. My heart goes out to you and your family. I am praying for all of you. Kellan sent me over. Your strength is so inspiring to me. I'm glad that you have your faith to comfort you.

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  71. I came over from Kellan's blog. I just want you to know that I am praying for you and your family. I am so sorry.

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  72. Brian is awfully lucky to have you. And I'll pray for you all.

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  73. I just came over from Beth's blog and don't have the right words either. But God hears our prayers and I said a prayer for you and your precious family.

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  74. Angie, I am here via Kellan on the Upside... words fail me. You seem like such a wise, strong woman and yet i'm sure this is the hardest thing you have ever faced. Lean on those close to you, let people care and do for you. I will pray for all of you. Wishing you the best.

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  75. I am here via Miracle Monday by Beth at A Mom's Life.

    I have you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. I pray for God to give you comfort, peace and wisdom as you make plans for your husband's days. I pray for God to give you strength as you help your boys get through these next days.

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  76. Angie. I am praying. This is tough news. Trying to think of ways I can help... please let me know if there is anything that I can do.

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  77. I, too, came over from Beth's blog. There are just no words, but I pray you will feel God's peace as you and your family live your lives. Since it's the 1st time over, I have a friend w/ a brain tumor, and she had the gamma knife procedure. Is there any chance, if he hasn't had that, that it might help him? I will add your family to my prayer list over on my blog!

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  78. Came from Kellan's blog and just wanted you to know that I am praying for your whole family. No other words seem adequate.

    Hallie

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  79. Just left Beth's blog. I am sitting here crying for you and your family. I can in no way understand what you are going through, but I want you to know that we are praying for all of you. I'm adding a link to this post on my blog. God's people are lifting you up.
    Deb

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  80. My heart goes out to all of you. I'm wishing you all strength, and sending lots of cyber hugs...

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  81. Your family is in my thoughts.

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  82. I pray for you nightly. Praying that you find peace during this time...a time I can't imagine.

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  83. Saying a prayer for you and your family.

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  84. I can't imagine how you must be feeling right now.

    May the Lord give you comfort that can not be explained. May He give you the hope of heaven that would overshadow the things of the world. May He draw you to Himself to pour out His love on you.

    O God, will You keep those boys in Your mighty hands?

    We will be praying for you and your family!

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  85. Hello,
    I just came over from The Simple Life and just wanted to let you know that I will definitely be praying for your healing, for peace, for comfort, for strength and most importanly, that the Father receives the glory in all things.

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  86. I came over from On the Upside and I want to give you a virtual hug and reassurance that your whole family is in my prayers and thoughts right now. If there is any way I can pass any of my strength to you, I am doing it.

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  87. Angie, I can't imagine what you and your family are going through.

    I am praying for your family - and especially Brian - that you can accept this and be at peace with God's decision.

    Your family is in my thoughts.

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  88. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  89. Living with this since 1997 must be unbearable. I wish you all peace, acceptance that you've done all in your power, and you've done nothing wrong or inappropriate to bring this upon your lives. May you use the minutes, hours and days you have left to sow love, joy and positive lasting memories. You are in my heart.

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  90. Your family is in my prayers.

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  91. My eyes are filled with tears. I don't know what to say. I only wish I could help you somehow. Help your family. I will continue to pray for you. We will be here when you need us and will be here when get some time. Just know that I am thinking of you and sending you lots of love and prayers. God Bless you and your family, Angie.

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  92. Hi. My name is Kaye, I found you on the UpSide blog.

    Keep having those conversations with Brian about the love of Jesus. And make every moment count.

    My prayers are with you.

    Kaye Butler
    Wynne, Arkansas

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  93. My prayers are with you and your family.

    Christopher

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  94. Angie, I have been following your family's story and want you to know I am praying for all of you. Especially YOU.

    I walked a similar path with my dad. He wanted to fight his cancer long past the time doctors said they could do no more. Being passive at such a time was not an option for him.

    May God pour his Grace into your family and give you the strength and courage you need for the days ahead. I know he will.

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  95. I read about your story through Beth at A Mom's Life.
    I will be praying for you and your family. I hope that you get the assistance that you need so that you can spend time more time with your husband.

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  96. I am here through Kellan. Just wanted to tell you how sorry I am that your family is going through this. Make these moments as beautiful as you can.

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  97. I am here through Kellan, too.

    You and your husband and your boys are all in my thoughts and prayers.

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  98. It just seems like this shouldn't be but I know that might be the wrong thing to say.
    I am so sorry and wish with all of my heart that you all can have the absolute maximum amount and depth of quality time for as long as you can.
    The nurse in me hopes you are able to have hospice care, if that kind of thing would be appropriate emotionally for you all. I don't know any of you or really anything about your situation, but have firsthand seen hospice help provide a ton of emotional support and physical comfort.
    I promise my intentions don't include preaching, or underestimation of your intelligence. I just want to make sure you know hospice might be of assistance.
    Prayers and the warmest thoughts your way.

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  99. Oh Angie, This is the first time I have ever visited your blog. Kellan mentioned you in her post and I just wanted to take a minute to let you know I'm so sorry to hear such devastating news for you and your family. I will be praying for you all during these difficult days ahead.

    God Bless!
    Shelly

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  100. Came over via Kristen's blog.
    Truly there are no words.
    Just know that you and your sweet family are in my prayers.
    May comfort and peace fill your heart and home.

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  101. I'm here as a result of Kellan's blog. I'm thinking of you and your family, and praying God will provide what each of you needs day to day and moment to moment.

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  102. thinking of you and your family. HUGS.

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  103. You and Brian are held in our hearts and prayers.

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  104. you, your boys and brian are in my prayers.

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  105. You & your family are in my thoughts & prayers.

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  106. Hi Angie. I'm over from Beth's place at "A Mom's Life". I just wanted to tell you that you are all in my prayers.

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  107. prayers from kentucky...
    and hugs, too!!!
    ~dani xxxx

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