Apparently, I’ve got issues with how it all went down. I say this because my dreaming self keeps bringing her back. A few nights ago, it was her choice. Half of the work had been done. She’d decided she wanted to go back to the house I identify as my childhood home to die, so my sisters and I had closed down her house in Florida, but there was still the big thing to do: see her through the dying part of the event. We had this nosy, hoarder neighbor who loved nothing more than stirring shit and being important to the resulting chaos, so she was suddenly in the mix and I was in a panic about having to do it all over again.
The next night, we were in a concert venue with my dad – I have no idea why this particular setting made any sense – and I was trying to talk to her about what we needed in place to do this work, but better this time. I don’t remember what it was I thought we needed to improve upon the event. Perhaps to put it off until I am smarter or more competent or at least a little wiser.
Shall we call it unresolved?
Given the parameters, I can’t imagine what it is that could have been done differently. By anyone. Maybe you could go back to her going through menopause and keep the hormone replacement therapy far, far away from her. But I was there for that and she was a terrorist. The hormones kept the worst of it at bay. Besides, who knew then?
Once the breast cancer was diagnosed, maybe they could have taken all her lymph nodes? A radical mastectomy? There is no reason to believe that the treatment she was given was inappropriate or somehow insufficiently aggressive. It was a cancer fed by estrogen, they had her on serious estrogen suppressors, they took out the lump and the impacted lymph nodes. What else were they supposed to do?
When the cancer came back, it wasn’t like it was clearly one thing or another. It was microscopic scatter-shot, so the markers in her blood went up, but there was nothing on the body-scans. At least there wasn’t anything until there was around Christmas of 2013. We can not talk about that adventure at NIH. Intestinal blockage where they suck the stuff that is blocked out of your nose? I’ll puke all over the computer just thinking about it.
They took out the blockage and put her on a regular regimen of chemo, and she was fine until she wasn’t. They thought she had time. We all thought she had more time.
Right up until her headache on Thanksgiving day, the response to events was exactly where it was supposed to be. And as the snowball started taking off down hill, there’s still nothing to go back and regret. When the doctor said “get here,” everyone did. Everyone, every thing, was exactly in the right place at the right time.
So what better do I want to go back and make happen? I have no idea.