A Daughters View of Her Father’s Lung Cancer: One Step Forward, One Step Back

One Step Forward, One Step Back

The one thing that I have learned during this past 6 weeks is that when there is one step forward there can be a couple steps back.

In early March we learned of my father’s diagnosis of 4th stage lung cancer, and had a precarious week waiting for a pesky tumor to be removed.

Luckily that tumor was removed without any further complications, and he was released from the hospital and was able to go home. Sadly, only about 5 days after his return home he took a fall that lead him right back to the hospital for a couple of days, and into skilled nursing for some rehab.

Everything was proceeding as normal at skilled nursing for about 5 days until I received a call that they were rushing him back to the hospital – they think he had a stroke

So back to hospital he went, with more unknowns then before and a bit more challenges to face.

He was lucky, the stroke did not cause any paralysis or cause him any physical long-term damage, the damage felt was in the head.

Let me just say that the human brain is AMAZING – it can convince you almost anything, while still keeping the core person in the forefront. While dealing with the brain issues, he also took another fall during the week that also made things a bit more worrisome than they had been previously.
Let me also say that this past week was the most challenging of this journey from my perspective – it tested me, it scared me and it forced me to think of the overall picture in front of me each day! Each day I went to the hospital not sure which father I would encounter – the sweet loving man who literally gave his life up to raise me, or an angry version who only wanted his cell phone despite not seeing the world quite like the rest of us.

I know in my previous post I mentioned that happiness was a reoccurring theme, but there is a another – LUCK. After another 8 days in the hospital he is now fully recovering, has his own clear thoughts back in skilled nursing (albeit a different one since he really disliked the first one he was at).

There was something my dad reiterated to me in early March that has stayed with throughout this – QUALITY OVER QUANTITY.

That QUALITY OVER QUANTITY statement means different things to different people, but to my father it means being home with Meadow, being able to see friends and loved ones, and being able to spend time in his jewelry room creating and dreaming. This past week that image has been a bit difficult to envision, but it is starting to emerge again and I am starting to see a path to that goal.

So here I sit in my house while my father sits in skilled nursing rehabbing and getting stronger for this epic battle ahead for which, despite much preparation he just may not win. I see him each day so I can see and mark the progress in my head, and really just to visit with him since he has not wanted visitors to this point, which I hope will change soon.

The future is a giant unknown so we plan day by day, and at times hour by hour but I know that it is a marathon, not a sprint – I think I need a comfortable pair of shoes!


Check back often, I plan to share this journey with you


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5 thoughts on “A Daughters View of Her Father’s Lung Cancer: One Step Forward, One Step Back

  1. ellen beck

    You and your Father remain in my thoughts. I think everyday of th both of you. I am so glad he is doing better, I know how scarey this all has been for you and for him. It is after all a new journey but one he will face with a smile as much as he is able. Tell him there are people he has never met out here pulling for him, and hoping every day brings a bit of happiness and sunshine. That his daughter has allowed us into his life which is amazing and we thank her for it. Give him a hug and that we hope he is up to visitors soon.

  2. Sherry DeJong

    Thank you so much Jennifer for sharing the story with those who love and care about you and your dad
    I certainly hope he progresses to where he can be at home with his Sweet Meadow and his favorite hobbies and that we can spend time with himsoon. You are amazing for all your doing thank you Jennifer

  3. Rhiannon Rowland

    Praying for your father and sending all the positive vibes his way that I can. Also thinking of you as well… as a cancer survivor, I always look back and think a lot of my fight was harder on my family than it was on me. I just had to endure surgery and chemo (and its side effects) and wait to get well, while my family had to take care of not only me, but also all the jobs that were normally mine and then their emotions on not knowing my outcome. Hugs to you all!


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