Monday, March 19, 2007

A Summary Update, for Those on FDMB

Jim, my husband, is in end-stage liver failure. We don't know what miracle happened but he has his mind and most of his body back. He still has some blood values out of whack, but I believe his sheer will, an appropriate diet and fluids, and an adjustment in medication, has brought him through the crisis. He still has problems with his gait (he won't exercise). He is in a Hospice program, but I doubt that will last much longer. He is very independent, and his Hospice aide and he get him and his living space cleaned up, and get him breakfast, within 45 minutes each morning.

Jim gets a physical therapy evaluation on Thursday to see whether he is capable of driving. His condo is on the market; I posted a link below.

I have (or had) Stage IIIa breast cancer. I have had two mastectomies, chemo, and radiation on one side. I was going to have breast reconstruction with silicone implants, but my skin on the right side was so damaged from the radiation that the plastic surgeon did not do anything on that side. I still have pain there and will start physical therapy again this week to try to overcome the tightness and pain. Once the swelling and pain is gone (might be quite a few months), I will consult with another plastic surgeon and get a prosthesis for that side. I still have no feeling in my finger tips and toes from the chemo. Makes it a little tough to type.

My GP has upped my anti-depression meds, and wants to see me now every month. I have started couseling because of my disappointment over the failed implant.

We lost Max about 10 days ago to pancreatic-origin cancer. He got very sick very quickly after it was DX, although it likely had been affecting him for a long time. Jim and I grieved terribly for about 5 days, but now we are pulling our lives back together. (I lost another 4 pounds, which I didn't need.) We have not yet received Max’s cremains, and are very anxious to get them.

Ennis, Max’s diabetic littermate, seems to miss him a lot, and has been pretty clingy. He also stopped eating for awhile, but that’s been resolved. He is limping, like he has some soft tissue damage. Also vocalizing more. He’s going to the vet tomorrow.

Lily loves Max being gone. He used to terrify her. But now she’s another rung up on the power ladder.

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Anonymous said...

((((Venita)))) You and Jim remain in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you for the update. Marjorie and Tigger from the FDMB

Anonymous said...

Hi Venita. This is a very nice blog you have here. I'm glad to hear Jim is doing better and I hope that your physical therapy works. Please give Ennis and Lily a hug from me.

Erica from FDMB.

Anonymous said...

Wow, they might let him drive! That really is something. I'm glad he is doing well. I am sending you big hugs and positive thoughts.


Alice said...

So glad things are looking up. Sending lots of love your way.

Anonymous said...

So glad to here Jim is doing better. I hope he gets to drive-- that will take some pressure off you.

As for missing dear Max....... (( Venita )) ((Enniss))
and although Lily does not outwardly show signs, I bet she misses him too-- (( Lily ))

Here's to healing and happiness,

Cheryl and Winnie

Teresa and Olivia(GA) said...

(((Venita))), I am glad that Jim is doing so well.

I am sorry for you all in the loss of Max. Please give Ennis some extra scritchies for me. I had a dog that grieved terribly for his lost buddy. We did the best we could in loving her, but it does show the love that they hold for others. They definitely have special little souls.

Please keep us posted with all you are going through. I hope you will get the feeling back in your fingers soon. That must be very annoying and frustrating. You keep fighting, (((Venita))). I keep you and Jim in my thoughts and prayers, sending many hugs.

Anonymous said...


I am so glad your husband is doing so much better and I too hope you get the feelings back in your fingers and will keep you in my prayers.

I am so sorry about Max. We do love them so much.

This is a very nice blog. Really nice. Take care. Thank you for letting us post here.


Tina and Regis

Cheri said...

Great Update! Jim's improvement is due to your will and care as much as his own strong will. Glad to see him doing well! Hugs woman, you continue to amaze me.

Anonymous said...

Hi Venita. This is Louise from GASB, i used to work there with Patti, do you remember? You can email me at

Sheri & Spyder said...

Dearest Venita,

So glad to hear the good news about Jim.

I love what you wrote about your message experience. I can just picture Ennis sitting there, and the look on his

We are always keeping you in our thoughts and prayers.
Spyder sends puurrrrs.