Sunday, June 17, 2012

[The Life of Shaun #448] Update on Mama - Post Party

Hi all,

Several people have asked after Mom, so thought I'd send an update.

I went back over to America last month for my Mom's and her twin sister's birthday party.  Lara and Lisa put together an awesome party at an outdoor space in Peotone and, fantastically, surprised Mom by arranging for all her friends from her old volleyball team to show up to surprise her.  The surprise happened before I arrived, but everyone said it was really touching and Mom was over the moon.

The party Lara and Lisa put together was perfect, despite cool weather.  In addition to the volleyball team, friends and family came in from literally all over the world to see Mom.  We had food and drinks, followed by drinks and drinks, gossip and storytelling, and a great montage of photographs and newspaper clippings from when the ladies played volleyball and their years immediately after.  Mom was so pleased and seemed emotionally and physically recharged afterwards.

Mom always said she wouldn't do chemo if she ever got cancer.  However, she decided to give it a go after her oncologist explained that newer chemo treatments aren't as harsh or taxing as the old.  So earlier in May, she had the first of six scheduled rounds of chemo, each separated by three weeks.  Despite the prediction of minimal side effects, Mom became very ill for several days and felt horrible.  As a result, she's decided not to pursue chemo, but will continue to stick to her healthy anti-cancer diet.  Between her first scan in January and pre-chemo scan last month, the tumours in her lungs didn't grow at all, so we're hoping the healthy lifestyle will keep Mom's body fighting the tumours.

I skype with her several times a week and she looks and sounds good, is active and feeling positive.  Lara, Lisa and the grandkids are around often, as well as Mom's sisters, Dar and Judy, Mom's "third daughter" Janine, and other rotating family members and friends, all of which keeps Mom busy and happy.

So all-in-all, she is doing well and we're, cliché, taking things day by day.  I'll be going back out this Summer and again in the Autumn.  I never thought I'd spend so much time in Manteno, Illinois!  <grin>  I'll continue to keep you posted, but for now, send Mom thoughts, love and positive vibes - and eMails, phone calls and visits don't hurt either.


Mom (in her sassy blonde wig) and the other hell-raisers.

Shaun H. Coley | Shadwell | Tower Hamlets | London E1 | UK |

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