Stay With Me

Hola amigos!                                                                                                                                            Here I am speaking Spanish from the hospital bed because my friend Fabiola is here helping me type this. I feel I need to give you all an update about what is going on but I needed time to gather my thoughts.

A lot has been going on.  On Monday, we came in for me to get blood work, my regularly scheduled oncology appointment, and the plan was to start up on my new treatment.  Well, blood work came back looking bad.  My bilirubin was super-high again, as were other liver levels.  My white blood cell count was high, and platelets were low.  Based on these counts, my doctor sent me for a CT scan instead of treatment, so I went.  It showed growth in my liver and lungs yet again.  So, I was placed in the hospital.  Well, here I had an infection in my blood, and possibly my liver.  I went on some pretty strong antibiotics, and they did a procedure to remove some of the fluid from my belly – they also went in to fix/replace the liver stent they had put in before.  After that, they said there was nothing else they could do.  Stivarga and Opdivo (the treatment I was supposed to start)  was off the table because of my liver levels being so high.  That was a hard pill to swallow.  And because I was so out of it from being loopy from the infection and antibiotics, I didn’t even understand that at first.

Long story short – we have decided to go home on hospice.  This sounds so final, I know it.  It breaks my heart to eve have these conversations – but we have to do it.  Whether we decide to do hospice or continue “outpatient care”, I wouldn’t be able to be treated because my liver levels are so high.  I would likely have tons of side effects, feel crappier, etc.  And I know there are people out there who are going to recommend alternative treatments, supplements, you name it.  Believe me, I have read everything and I have tried it all.  Hospice ISN’T the end-all.  If my liver levels improve, I start feeling better, etc., then I can always revoke hospice and try another treatment.  For now, that just isn’t in the cards.  I am going to reach out to Dr. Kasi (guy in Florida/Iowa), and possibly to another doctor that I have seen here in Mechanicsburg to get some second opinions.  I already know that trials will not take me because my blood numbers are so wonky.

Believe me, friends, I have tried everything.  I want to spend some quality time with my family and friends, and I want to do it with as little pain as possible.  Hospice seems like the best and easiest way to do that, so that’s what I choose.  Is it hard?  Yes.  Is it permanent? Not necessarily.  But please don’t judge me.  I just need your support right now.  I have a relationship with God, and I know he is always with me.  I need you to be with me, too.

I love you, dear family and friends, and that will never change.  This is all very hard for me.  Please help to make it easier.

19 thoughts on “Stay With Me

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  1. Still praying for you down here in Delaware. My heart breaks for you, but I know you are making a wise choice. God can still do miracles and you know that he can provide comfort. Prayers for your family, hospice staff, and friends that minister you to you right now. XOXO

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  2. So sad to hear this news. My thoughts and prayers are with you and everyone involved. May God put his everloving arms around you all and give you all peace and comfort during this time in your life.

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  3. Maria,

    Ive seen you trying and doing it all and with grace and dignity! Hospice isn’t an end all but I know you are making the best decision under the circumstances! I totally support whatever decisions you make, lady. Love you to the moon and back and see you soon!

    Love…….Andi

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  4. Prayers for you as you make these difficult decisions. God will guide you in the right direction and comfort you along the way. Spend the time with your family and friends and enjoy every moment. May you have peace and comfort at this time.

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  5. Maria – you are brave, honest and a courageous fighter! I am sure it is so difficult to share this information, but at the same time you are providing your prayer warriors with specific ways to pray for you, your family and your medical staff. I wish you happy, loving time with your family right now. Praise God for staying close to you as you continue to share your beautiful light with all who know you! May God bless you and keep you in His care 💕🙏🏼💕

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    1. My dear Maria, you and your family have been in not just my prayers but that of my family. I have no wise words to offer you, no advice since I know every decision you’ve made has been the right one. God is with you as we all are and even from miles away, prayers are our bridge. Thank you for the many huge lessons in life you’re teaching me. Un abrazo.

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  6. Maria, I am heart broken and amazed at your strength in doing the best thing possible for you and your family. God is with you every step of the way and I will continue to pray for you each and every day !

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  7. You are supported in every decision you make. 💕Continuing to send love, prayers and strength to you.
    Love and strength Alison xxxx

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  8. Maria,
    Thank you for sharing everything…the good and bad. I am so glad to have met you when I did. I will continue to pray for you and your family and am glad you are at peace with everything.

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  9. Maria, you are one of the strongest people I know. Thinking of you, knowing that you are a fighter and will give it your all. Thinking of you, knowing that you want to be close to family and friends because it energizes you and gives you peace. I am sure it’s difficult, but like you said not permanent. Love you chica!

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  10. Oh sweet Maria, I am so sorry to hear this. Such a long and hard road. I think of you often and I have been praying for you. I am now asking friends to pray for you too.
    I want you to know that you have been such a huge influence on me as I went through my cancer journey. You are a truly amazing and beautiful person that I am so grateful to have in my life. Please know that I will continue you pray for your family, your friends and especially you.
    ❤️🙏💕

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  11. Dear Maria, I’m sure you’ve made the right decision, like you said, it doesn’t have to be final. God, your family and multiple friends want what’s best for you, even if there can be so many questions or doubts that run through our heads. I wish I could offer you wiser words, but I have none. What I do have are my constant prayers for you and your family, what I do have is a husband and a son who even if you’ve never met, are constantly remembering you in their prayers, and finally, what I do have is a role model in you, who teaches me constantly how not to be so whiny about trivial matters, and this dear Maria is a huge deal. Un abrazo.

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  12. Dear Maria,
    I can’t fathom anyone judging you, all you will get from those reading this is love, support, respect, and admiration for the warrior and inspiration to so many others you have been for the last five years. I’m confident that all will continue to pray for you, Tim, Alexander and the rest of your beautiful family. You are one in several million Maria! God bless!

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  13. Dearest Maria…I send you love, warm, embracing hugs and support for every and all decisions you have made. Your grit and grace have inspired so many and have served as a true example of faith and determination to so many, and especially to your dear Alexander. May this step give your body the rest it needs.

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  14. Maria,
    God, your family and your friends love you. Keep turning to us for the love and support that you need. We are all here for you.

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  15. Maria,
    You have been truly an inspiration to me and many, many, many people for your strength, courage, and Humor!!. Cancer and pain suck. May you find peace, happiness, painfree days and the best days ever with your family and friends. Heal… Build strength… A big hug to you..

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  16. Maria I am so sorry to hear this but know that God is always with you! You have always been in my continued prayers and always will be. The support and love is here for you to lean on us. You have been fighting for a long time but that’s the kind of person you are. If you need anything please let us know even if it’s to sit with you, bring you something. Love you Maria!

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  17. Sending our love and prayers to you, Tim, Alexander and your family. May God continue to give you strength and hear the prayers of your army of loved ones and friends. 💕 Xoxo

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