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July 23, 2005

the homecoming


Our little dog, Charlie Brown, can sleep peacefully now that Sandy has finally come home from the hospital.

It is called a glioblastoma and it is a cancer of the connective cells that hold the neurons together in the brain. When the pressure from the growing tumor began to ravage her thoughts and steal her memories, it is impossible to determine. But our family's world turned upside down on Wednesday afternoon at 2:47 PM, July 13, 2005. The doctor discovered a tumor the size of an orange growing in the left frontal lobe of her brain. After collecting our two daughters, we rushed to the hospital. She was slowly deteriorating before our eyes. Her walking was slowing down, her speech was softening, and she was becoming more confused. Dreadding to go home, we kissed her goodnight and left her in the care of the nurses.

By Thursday morning, Sandy could not walk without help and her speech was not much more than a few words said at a whisper. We told ouselves it was the medicine she was receiving through the clear tube that ran from the bag attached to the infusion pump down into the vein in her hand.

Doctor White removed as much of the tumor as he could. There were still some tendrils weaving their way through parts of the left side of her brain. The remainder would be left for the radiation treatment to come.

Slowly she began to recover in the intensive care unit. Each day, she stayed awake for longer periods, talked more, and was less confused. With help, she began to sit in a chair, stand up and take small steps. She was in ICU for eight days and the neural ward for two days. Now she sleeps next to me. Or I should say, she sleeps next to the little dog that keeps a protective eye on her and the little dog sleeps next to me.

Posted by jhyden at July 23, 2005 06:35 AM