Today would have been my mom’s 67th birthday.
We lost mom to a glioblastoma, an extremely aggressive type of brain tumor, on 2 November 2016.
She was first diagnosed on 1 July 2015, and with a whirlwind of small and amazing miracles, she had surgery just 6 days later and her surgeon felt he was able to remove the entire tumor. This almost never happens with the glioblastoma, as it grows very quickly and typically winds in and around the brain. Mom’s was caught. And caught early. And was operable. She made a quick recovery, coming home to stay with us just 5 days after her surgery.
Follow up care with the best oncologist, Dr Roy Williams, oral chemo and radiation. She lost very little hair through the process and physically recovered about 80-90% of her normal self.
She passed the six-month mark, still all clear. Typically, if a glioblastoma recurs, it’s within the first six months. Sadly, mom is anything but typical. In May of 2016, during a routine MRI, they discovered the glioblastoma came back. And it was bigger this time.
Since it was in the same area, surgery and radiation were out. Briefly, it looked like mom may have been eligible to join a glioblastoma clinical trial at Duke University, but getting the tumor reduced in size and her mobility didn’t overlap. She put up a damned good fight.
We had the most amazing home care for her final weeks. Preferred Health Staff. They were probably one of the best decisions I have ever made. I will forever be grateful to all the caregivers, especially Alissa. Not only were they there for mom, but they were a tremendous support for me in mom’s final days. And of course Oliver did his best to keep everyone’s spirits up.
The caregivers, Marc, Kelly, Oliver, and I were all with mom when she passed.
I will always miss her.