My precious Jeff …
They now think the cancer has spread to his brain sheath and spine.
To confirm this, he has to have a spinal tap, but first has to be off blood thinners for 72 hours.
If cancer is in the brain sheath, there’s basically nothing they can do. We start the countdown.
Tomorrow they are bringing a social worker in to further discuss hospice.
They are hesitant to discharge him as he’s so very weak, although cognitively he seems much better. His oxygen sats are low and they have him on oxygen now.
He’s still profoundly tired and tonight his tummy was really hurting him. They don’t know why. Additionally, he never has headaches and his head was hurting tonight.
Jeff experienced a nose bleed much of the day, at times expelling large blood clots. We were told it’s probably from the dry air in hospital. I’m not convinced - I fear - dry air is not causing the bleed. Jeff has been in hospital several times over the last 18 months and has never had a nose bleed from “dry hospital air”.
To reiterate, we don’t know for sure if the cancer has spread to brain sheath/spine. The doctors speculate this is the case considering Jeff’s current condition and that the Keytruda doesn’t appear to be working.
Our children and I will be at the hospital tomorrow morning so we’re present for doctor’s (oncology) rounds. I’m not sure we’ll learn anything new as we have to wait at minimum 72 hours for the spinal tap, but we were advised to be there if possible.
The social worker will be by in the afternoon to discuss hospice.
Jeff did not want to be left alone tonight. Although the hospital is far more lax on COVID restrictions, overnight visitors are prohibited.
In hopes they would bend the rules, Channing asked the nurse if she could stay. The nurse was not authorized to give her permission and explained the powers that be who make these decisions had gone home for the day.
Our hopes plummeted, however; a short time later the nurse reappeared in Jeff’s room.
She happily advised that she had spoken with the charge nurse and Channing had been approved to stay the night with her daddy. Whomever the charge nurse is, I wish I could hug her neck.
I know the nurses will never see this, but I wish they could. Jeff has absolutely phenomenal people taking care of him.
Jeff was moved to a different room so his nurses changed. His first nurse, Nate, made it a point to remember our names and recognized our masked faces the moment he saw us. He took it upon himself to order a bed extender for Jeff to ensure his utmost comfort while in bed. Nate patiently explained things we didn’t understand, offered a host of things to potentially make Jeff’s stay more comfortable, and he exuded kindness, compassion, and sympathy to our plight.
When Jeff was moved, he stayed on the same floor, but went to a different wing. As Channing and I were navigating our way towards Jeff’s room, we happened to run into Nate. He recognized us immediately and initiated conversation. I mean, he could have just walked right past us, but he took the time to see how we were holding up and inquired about Jeff. When we told him of the latest news, his concern seemed so genuine, and he offered to keep us and Jeff in his prayers.
I didn’t think it possible to get another nurse who matched Nate, but I was wrong. Kimber proved to be just as genuine as Nate. As Channing and I filled her in with some details about Jeff, she listened in earnest and even thanked us as she said it would help her take better care of Jeff. Kimber thoughtfully addressed any concerns we had and, like Nate, offered everything she could think of to not only make Jeff more comfortable, but Channing and I too. Kimber was the one who got approval from the charge nurse so Channing could stay and she allowed Maggie, Jeff’s beloved English Bulldog, to stay.
It’s such a blessing to be around so many sincerely caring people. It makes a crummy situation a little more bearable and I’ll forever be grateful.