O'Fallon, IL (Hi 87 Lo 68)
I really don't know where to start. I'm basically using the blog for reference and when our lives turned upside down. Don't always take what you think is "OLD AGE" for what it is. Seek help and get verifications that your health is ok.
The story starts basically in November 2020. My sister noticed Jim was a little off on some of the things he was saying. Getting words mixed up or not following the topic we were discussing. It was so subtle we figured it was just something as you get older will happen, we all do it. I noticed later that Jim was taking longer naps and more often, maybe about February. I knew my rock wasn't the stable guy I once knew and life wasn't ever going to be the same in May 2021. Something was wrong. He came in from his daily walk slurring and didn't feel right. He sat down and rested then seemed fine. We had planned on going to the grandkids high school and college graduation. We would be traveling 3 days instead of the 2 that we normally do. Jim wasn't up to par, no pain, nothing you could put your finger on, but something was way off beat, on the way he walked and talked. Basically a slur that wasn't normally noticed. The day before we left he wanted to see our doctor. He noticed a droop in the mouth and couldn't talk like normal but said it was up to us to go on the trip and he made a neurology appointment for the week we got back. We decided since the doctor wasn't all upset about it, we took off on Saturday morning. Sunday there was a bit more slurring but nothing to make us stop and think about it. Monday we arrived at Frank's, our older son. They noticed something was wrong right away.
Tuesday was our turnaround day. We went to see friends an hour away. The longer the day went the worse Jim got. He was slurring and slow walking. When we got back to our sons, it was too much to ignore so we took him to the nearest hospital. They admitted him immediately. He went to Barnes Hospital in St. Louis a few hours later. A CSCAN and MRI showed a mass. They weren't sure just a mass or if a stroke was involved with it. Another CSCAN and MRI was done to see if there was any change 24 hours later. They left him go back to our sons on the 28th for the holiday weekend. A team of doctors spent time to figure out what was going on between the two MRI's. It was a wait to see what was next. The biopsy they wanted to do was too risky, too many blood vessels and too high of risk to do a needle. The final thoughts were a full open surgery into the brain and pick a piece off the mass. (click the photo to enlarge). There's a circle where the mass is located.
They decided to do a biopsy on June 2. It took two and half hours. They aren't sure what kind of cancer but it's stage 3/4 cancer. Glioma was the first thought. Now we wait for the biopsy to give us an idea what is next. Jim was in ICU for a couple days and moved to regular room on June 4. They will have PT work with him before they let him out of hospital. ,
Right now he's still in the hospital. We're waiting to meet up with the doctor on the biopsy. My next post will tell what kind the mass is for sure. I know life isn't going to be the same, but no one can guess how long he'll be with us.
In one week I got an apartment near our son, put the house up for sale in Florida, going down to Florida with sis and sort for the movers for June 17, flying back to O'Fallon on 19th, Movers should be here in time to sign for the apartment on June 21st, so no storage. All medical appointments are cancelled in Florida. Things are falling in place.