Not being able to help Katie is the worst part. It’s 12:30am, she’s awake and screaming, Tyler can’t settle her, and if I go in there it’ll just be a nightmare of her asking to nurse and flailing around while I try desperately to protect my tender new port site/stitches/incision and not put any of her weight in my arms (can’t lift her until after it heals next week). I hate hearing her cry – I’m supposed to be able to go console her with my milk.

But I guess this is how it is now. Hopefully after my port heals I can take on some sleep duties again and hope that she someday forgives me for not nursing her. I try to explain and I think she wants to understand but just can’t process why is take away something so sweet and powerful.

Today Tyler and I went to my oncologist for my chemo education appointment. We learned about the drugs I’ll be getting, the prescriptions I’ll be taking home, the side effects I might get, the symptoms that mark an emergency. We’re already so numb to all of this. Cancer. It’s just this big ugly thing that sits in the middle of our lives now and we just sort of politely shuffle around it, awkwardly bumping into sometimes and muttering an apology. Life is so strange.

The medical assistant we met with today brought us two stuffed animals – a little pink elephant and a tiny sea otter. She has two kids and told us that while she usually keeps work away from home, they heard her talking about a favorite patient who’s been diagnosed with cancer and she has a one year old baby and she’s worried about the family – without saying anything the kids went to their rooms and spent a long time picking out a toy from each of them to give to Katie. It’s amazing to see how much love there is out there for us. It’s humbling. Tyler immediately started playing with them. When we got home later, Katie scooped them both into a big hug, tucking the otter under her arm and kidding the elephant repeatedly on the end of the trunk.

Tyler continues to be amazing. He’s sleep deprived like the mother of a newborn. He’s bonding more and more to Katie every day. He’s managing my errands and appointments and medications like it’s no big deal. He keeps the house running and the baby alive. He’s getting more and more sweet with me by the day. He’s keeping us all together when the pressure is too much for anyone.

Some good friends came down from San Francisco last night, brought tuna casserole with chocolate cream pie. They cleaned our kitchen and washed Katie’s laundry. I ate too much and I’m in agony, thus the late night post. I didn’t even make it to the pie. But it was amazing to see them.

I’m so tired. I’ve been doing well, really. To be totally honest, constipation gets me down. This is a blog about colon cancer, so I can talk about that, right? It’s the one pain so far (I’m sure chemo will change this) that painkillers can’t fix. It just makes it worse. And damn does it hurt. Ruins my outlook. Maybe something upbeat tomorrow.


  1. I am sorry this is so hard Darlin’. But I am very happy you have your Ty to step up and take over and is great that Katie and he are bonding so closely.
    What a lovely story about the stuffed animals.
    We all want to protect and hand you stuffed animals and feed you till you can’t move and especially make you not have to go through this mess.

    I can’t believe how much this picture looks like your mom~well maybe add 100 moles and then it would.
    I love you Darlin’ hang in there.

  2. Loretta Markell said:

    Love the stuffed animal story. I hope you’re feeling better now. Katie will be demanding as all kids are when testing our limits but that’s a good thing. She has a mind of her own and won’t be easily influenced by others. Tyler is a gem of a man. Sending all of you our love and hope you get some good rest.

  3. Can you take Smooth Move tea? It got me through the “damage” painkillers did when I was on a morphine drip. Also, some yoga moves seemed to help. The twisty kind. Even just some good belly rubbins helped. But belly rubbins always feel good.

  4. Suzi said:

    That’s amazing about those kids giving Katie their toys. It gives you hope for the world. Love you.

  5. lots of healing juju so you can give Katie some comfort soon. I know that has to be incredibly hard <3

  6. Love, love, love that you are finding kind hearts along your journey. You and Katie deserve all the kindness and comfort in the world.


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