I have lived in Northern Scottsdale on and off since 2002. I’ve lost count how many times, actually. Aside from one winter spent in Palm Desert, California, Scottsdale has been my go-to winter location because my family owns property there.
However, this snow season, sitting under the Arizona sun was brought on for a new reason. Not just to evade the lower temperatures (though it is a major plus). This years reason is one that no one plans for.
My father has just finished cancer treatments of radiation and chemotherapy for a cancerous growth near his tongue. I wasn’t extremely involved in the decision making process, but of course I had my own ideas of how I thought intense chemo might go for him. I’ve even worked as a Unit Secretary in an Emergency Room. I had seen enough to prepare me, but no amount of knowledge or prep can keep your insides from voicing your own opinion, secretly telling yourself everything you want to hear about how you would do it if it was you, wondering how you can help without causing more work. Hoping you actually have a positive effect on the situation. Pushing through the fatigue because there is no one else for the job. A sense of carrying on as so much changes in hopes to hold on to some sense of personal normalcy.
If I heard my mother correctly, my dad stopped eating January 9. His throat was so severely damaged from his treatments that it disabled his throat muscles completely. He is doing special motions that his speech therapist taught him to try and build the muscles back up.
It is now March 10 and I am happy to report that my dad had his first bite of food in however many days that is!
Here’s to the small victories!!
Have an amazing night!