My Rock, My Friend, My Warrior, My Mom
Hi, just wanted to share my story here. I am an only child to the most wonderful person, wonderful woman Velia. We were always together, my mom, my daughter, and me. Our nightmare started June 23rd, I woke to find my mom lying on the floor with pills in her hand, I ran to her to ask her what was wrong what had happened?? She tried responding, but she was slurring. I called in my step-dad to help me, he turned her over and we sat her in a a chair, I called an ambulance to come, since we live out in the country I knew it was going to take them a while, I told my step-dad we need to take her NOW. We loaded my mom into the truck and left to the nearest emergency room (Baylor of Waxahachie, Waxahachie, TX). There they immediately did CAT scans and said “it looked to be a stroke” and that she was needing to go to Big Baylor, Baylor of Dallas. She was transported by helicopter.
She was admitted into ICU, my mom was conscience, she could see everything going on but she wouldn’t talk. We stay there a week, she lost movement of her right side. We came home July 1st, two days after my mom’s discharge he started moving her fingers and as the days went on she was slowly moving her wrist, arm and all. I would help her get of bed, help shower her and do everything, I went from working full time to part time, because I felt no one could take care of my mom like me. Although she hated the fact that she had to depend on someone to do everything for her, her appetite changed 100%, no meat only like soups. As I saw things it was like a bump in the road and soon she’d be walking again and we’d be doing things like we use to. Then on August 16, 2013 I came home from work we had lunch, I sat her down in the living room and we watched a movie together with my daughter. That afternoon she asked me for a cup of milk, strawberry milk. I prepared it for her and she drank it, but couldn’t keep it down, she then asked for yogurt, and that came back up. I told her we needed to go to the doctor she said no, she felt fine, but I insisted on taking her and she finally said “okay, I’ll go for you so you won’t worry and see I’m okay” I smiled and said “okay thank you”. We went in and I told them her history and they did another CAT scan, as we waited she kept telling me she was feeling fine and that we could go home I told her “yes I think we’ll be going home soon”. And then that’s when we got the news, that a mass was found…a rather large mass. I told the doctor “no there must be a mistake, maybe it’s dried up blood”. She nodded and said “well maybe but she’ll be going to Baylor of Dallas”. We got to Dallas and she was admitted again to ICU, we stayed for 4 weeks in the hospital, they did all kinda of tests trying to figure out what type of tumor she had, they had no idea.
They couldn’t get it, the final route was a brain biopsy. And I remember asking my mom, “do you want to do this” she told me “I want to know what it is, before it’s too late” I said “okay” It was done on a Tuesday. The next 3 days were the worse I didn’t know what was going to happen…I saw my mom very ill, I was terrified. Then that Friday, her brain surgeon came in and gave the worse news I could possibly hear, my mom was diagnose with “Glioblastoma” the rarest type of cancer. I was told that day, maximum life time, months….possibly a year. At that moment the world came crashing down on me, my rock, my foundation what pushed me to the MAX was falling, and there was nothing I could do! The next couple of days I had palliative care come and talk to me, to consider hospice, I had heard of hospice but never actually knew what exactly it was. I was told there what they do. I said “no I’m not giving up on my mom we’re going to fight this because I KNOW she’s going to want to fight this.” Slowly my mom was recovering from her surgery, they told her what the diagnose’s was and she said like I knew she would, “I’m going to fight this…..for her, my daughter”! We were discharged from the hospital and soon after we had appointments with her Nuero-Oncologist, they explained to us what Chemo was and what could happen, we had an appointment with Radiation Oncologist, I asked my mom again, twice “do you want to do this?” Her response was “yes, I’m going to fight this because I can do this.” I told her I was with her EVERY step of the way, her and I were going to fight this! She smiled and answered “that’s right”!
She started chemo and radiation mid September 2013, it was tough, very tough on her. But she kept strong. I would see my mom slowly going down hill, but I had hope that she was going to be okay, that the chemo was doing this but as soon as she finished her chemo and radiation she’d regain strength. October 31, 2013 came and we were told by her Neuro-Oncologist to take her to the nearest ER her potassium was very low, I took her in, and come to find out her potassium was fine but her Platelet’s were very low, she only had 8, and that our body has roughly 400,000. Again doctor’s telling me that maybe it was time to consider hospice, and again I refused it, I didn’t want to give up her, I couldn’t let her go just like that, I made a promise to her that I would do anything and everything I could to help and keep going. The doctor understood and told me to consider, think about it, I got furious and told him that he didn’t know what the feeling was, what I was feeling, only those who’ve gone through this would know. to my surprise he said he did, he lost his mom and younger brother. I finally broke down and said I don’t know when is the right time, all he said was “honey, you’ll know when, believe me.”
My mom would scream to me, she’d scream my name for help, she’d cry while screaming I asked what could I do to help, I asked what was hurting, she never told me all she said was “nothing baby, nothing I’m okay” That November 2nd I was told that my mom has 2 infections in her blood and there really wasn’t much to do, her body was rejecting any kind of antibiotic’s, and his honest opinion was she wasn’t going to make it. I asked, “how long” he said “a week…..max” Monday November 4th I was with her, as I always was, the nurse said to me quietly, when she seen me crying, because that’s all I did, “your mom isn’t leaving till she see’s your going to be okay, she’s worried about you, your her only baby” The next day, November 5th, I spoke to my mom and told her, not to worry about me, that I was going to be okay, although I would always beg her to fight, she couldn’t leave me, I’d be alone if she were to leave me. But that day I found the strength to tell her I was going to be okay.
I thanked her for EVERYTHING she did for me, worked hard to give me all I wanted. I told her I loved her…like I always told her. She opened her eyes and a tear fell I wiped it and said to “don’t cry mommy….you cry I cry, you smile I smile” I kissed her, and at that moment, she left home. I felt the world came down on me, I lost the person who I loved the most, the person who gave me life, who taught me how to fight, how to be strong, but most of all how to love. My mom left me, at that moment I lost my mind, or at least I felt like I did. All I have now are memories, good memories are the one’s I like to remember, but in the end good or bad…I’ll cherish them. My mom fought the entire way, through this journey, like she did through out her life, she was a fighter. I sometimes think life gave me the chance to be with her every step of the way, not just during her illness, but before that, we were always together. Because this was going to happen, she was going home early so life separated us, because like my mom guided me here, I feel that she left early, so when we are together again, she will also guide me there.