Friday, November 7, 2014

In These Final Days

Hello to Everyone, 

~Today I post very upsetting news. I would only ask you all to remember that this is a terrible thing for me to write as we are still living it. It is only fair for you to know what is happening as you have read my blog from the very beginning and that I thank you for.~ 

As you all know, my parents made the trip down to Houston, Texas on the 13th of October. They came down with the intention of participating in a clinical trial that showed promising results in other patients. He did not qualify for this trial because the doctors found plaque building up behind his eye and this increased his risk for a stroke greatly. They also found a subdural hematoma (bleeding in the space between the brain and the lining that covers the brain). This was a major and unexpected set back for my dad. Instead of focusing on destroying the cancer, the doctors turned their attention to stopping the bleeding in his brain. 

They were continuing this treatment up until my dad tripped and fell on November 3rd. This fall has ended all hope of recovering. He fell on his head very very hard which has caused even more bleeding. His brain is swelling and being pushed to one side as the bleeding continues. It is also causing him to be in a state of confusion. Because of his headaches, the doctors have him on major pain medications (which I am very thankful for). Due to these medications, he will go through periods of sleep and when he wakes up he can answer questions, recognizes his family, and has even made a few jokes. He doesn't always remember what happened to him and he sometimes isn't able to speak in complete sentences or very clearly for that matter. It just depends. As the bleeding progresses, his platelet count will drop and this will cause even more bleeding. This process has already begun. We have consulted every doctor here who specializes in leukemia and they have said that giving more platelets at this point would just be more cruel than beneficial. It would prolong what we have all dreaded. At this point, his comfort is all that matters. 

I am so sorry to deliver this news. My dad had every intention of surviving. He is such a brave man and such a wonderful, wonderful dad and husband. He tried everything he possibly could have tried. His body has been through so much, and looking at him now gives me physical pain. Despite feeling so sick, he has been a dutiful and sweet patient for two years. He told us before coming down to Texas that the only way he would go, is to go down fighting. This is just horrible, and it is a huge, huge loss for all of us. Yesterday, when my sister and I arrived in Texas we thought he was going to die. He was sleeping and nobody believed he would wake up. The three of us, (my mom, sister, and I) talked to him and held his hands and kissed his face. All of the sudden, his eyes opened and he knew exactly who we were. He told all of us how much he loves us and how proud he was to have such a wonderful family. That was one of the most precious memories I will ever have. It also proves just what a strong spirit he has. The doctors believe that the bleeding will progress pretty quickly from here on out, but they said that because of his spirit he could have up to a week left. Nobody knows for sure. 

Please remember who my dad truly was. He was passionate, dynamic, funny, loving, kind, creative, hard working and always up to something wonderful. He had a giggle like no other, loved telling stories and for me, his bear hugs were the best things in the world. He was a wonderful cook, an excellent teacher, and my biggest fan.  He loved the outdoors more than anyone I know and some of my favorite memories are of us hunting or working outside. A dad is irreplaceable in a girl's life and my dad is going to hold a special place in my heart forever. I love him, I always will but his journey here on this earth is almost over. 

Please pray for peace, for his comfort, and for a quick passing from this life. There is no need for him to suffer. 

Thank you all for your love, and support. It has meant everything to us and my dad wouldn't have gotten as far as he did without you holding him up. 

Laura Katchmark  

Forever, and always in my heart.