Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Life Can Change On A Dime

I keep typing and deleting. I don't know how to approach this update. First and foremost, Chad is okay. There's not much change. Before I get into that - I just wanted to share some internal thoughts. Life isn't always easy. We're all imperfect human beings and every day we're given on this planet is a blessing.

Chad's life, my life - our family's life - was turned inside out and upside down 13 months ago. Yes, it's been hard. Yes, it feels like it never ends. But we are so blessed to still be here, still together, still fighting, still loving, laughing and living. Far too often lately, I've seen live lost, people gone way too soon. Whether it be cancer, other alarming health issues or a tragic accident. I've shed many silent tears over the past few months for people I knew, barely know or even some I went to high school with. Gone too soon. So even though things get tough and our own private hells are exhausting. Life is a blessing and I'm so thankful for every day.

Chad did not have his endoscopy today as we had hoped. The VA Veteran's Choice Program is a complete joke and the people handling the paperwork are less than competent. Hopefully it will still happen some time this month.

He did go to his Primary Physician today. He was working in Mayfield (the same town the VA clinic is in) - so I didn't actually go. (I hurt inside a little when I say that lol) This was the first doctor visit I hadn't attended and it's difficult for me because I only have second-hand information and I, of course, couldn't ask my million questions I always ask.

Chad has yet another new doctor at the VA and I hear he seems nice. He is actually familiar with appendix cancer and has dealt with it before. (Not sure what that means or to what extent) Apparently he was an Army doctor in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Chad addressed;

Neck and Shoulder Spasms - The doctor has put in for an MRI. He has also prescribed Chad stronger muscle relaxers. He suggested Chad get a cervical traction device to assist in stretching his neck muscles.

Belly Pain and Bloating - Chad's oncologist put Chad on amitriptyline to address some scar tissue pains he was having in the beginning. It has a side effect of weight gain and is also an anti-depressant. Chad decided to stop taking these a few weeks ago (with doctor's approval/encouragement) It has been my opinion, that this drug was the cause of some of his prior issues, as well as his new neck spasms. I believe a lot of Chad's trouble with the spasms is tension/stress and since the amitriptyline is weaning out of his system - it's attributing to his current difficulties. His new doctor seems to believe the same. He has put Chad on some different kind of anti-depressant that doesn't have sever side effects.

Leg Pain - This isn't something I've discussed before because it was never really related. Well I may have mentioned it in passing when I bought him some compression socks. Anyways, Chad has bad varicose veins in his legs which have began giving him a lot of pain and discomfort so the doctor has also put in for Chad to see the Vein Clinic people.

Medications - I don't know what this doctor has done but he's combined three medications/treatments into one so Chad isn't pouring so many chemicals into his body. This I have very little information on, so I don't know.

He did not address;

Moles - I mentioned a mole previously that caused him concern. I wasn't too concerned about it because it didn't look bad. It was a raised mole (always has been) and he said it was sore but I think he just irritated it by rubbing it against something. it stopped hurting the next day and looks normal. With that said, he does still need to have another check of his moles due to his family history of melanoma but due to his dislike of the VA Doctor who seen him previously, he is reluctant. Since I wasn't there, I couldn't push for it. Sigh.

In Conclusion:  *Sigh* I dunno. He's hurting right now. Bit of a cramp in his neck which is the first one since we left the ER on Sunday. Probably due to all the stress of the doctors but who knows. Hopefully his endoscopy will still be this month and God willing him being off the amitriptyline will eventually lead to fewer problems, rather than more.

As always - your love, friendship, support and prayers are priceless!



  1. I just hate it when you can't go along to ask the "right" questions, demand the "right" treatment ... but, I know that if you don't feel something is right you will be the first to address it. You are a good wife; a wonderful caregiver Shannon.

  2. Shannon you do a phenomenal job of keeping up with the latest treatments and whats going on with Chad. Yes it sucks when you miss one informative visit..but if you get antsy Im sure you can always call the DR. Praying for an Easter Miracle...or sooner.
    Big Hugs to you both
    Nancy xoxox

  3. Hi Novella
    Just stop by to read your blog. I hope the new doctor can help Chad. Keep the faith and you both are in my prayers. Thank you for keeping us informed Big Hugggggg xxxoooo

  4. Hi Novella
    Just stop by to read your blog. I hope the new doctor can help Chad. Keep the faith and you both are in my prayers. Thank you for keeping us informed Big Hugggggg xxxoooo

  5. Hi Novella and Chad...Just happened to stumble on this extremely terrible news. Sorry for not knowing earlier...You say at the beginning that you didn't know where to approach this update, well I don't where to start saying how I feel for you guys. I will say this: I've always said that if you haven't been in the same situation and you say "I know" Sorry you don't. Well I can say I know.. Been there, I took care of my wife who passed away in 2010 not through Cancer but seeing the person you love so much get worst and worst is the most terrible thing on this earth.. What your going through is very hard physically and emotionally. You both feed off yourselves to stay positive and have some laughs. You both have to stay positive in this ordeal, at times it is very difficult to do as it seems everything goes wrong. I pray for you both that they will find a cure and you can live happily ever after. I just wanted to say Novella I don't know if you remember me but in 2006 when I first joined SS you were one of the first to comment on a song I did and you suggested that with my voice you would like me to sing "the Greatest" by Kenny Rogers and I did. I will never forget that and today I thank you and as a special tribute to you and Chad I will do it again...Keep you spirits high my friends. The Midasman (Mark Samuel) Hugs...