I am the daughter in law to a stage 4 melanoma patient, and we just got the diagnosis about 4 weeks ago. She was living in maui hi, which their health system was out of control. No doctors would answer my questions, she wasn't on health insurance and all they cared about was ability to pay even though they say they treat even when there is no ability to pay. The doctors don't talk to each other. The patient advocate wasn't advocating. Even the pcp wasn't communicating with the oncologist or urologist. My mother in law was initially admitted to the hospital because she had a blockage to urinate. They gave her a stent which still needs to be changed. With how the doctors weren't communicating plans and waiting on insurance we didn't have we decided to move her to California where she could get medical coverage because she moved states.
It has been an up and down rollercoaster. Some good days and bad. The 6 hour flight was so hard for her. She is now incontinent but only once or twice a day for the past week. I don't know if the pressure of the flight adjusted her stent or if her leg injury muscle tear is pulling on her groin causing her to pee or if the pain is just so bad she can't control it sometimes.
She is also sensitive to narcotics and have to play around with dosages. Meaning halving the pills. But it's still hard with her muscle tear which was never diagnosed or checked.
My mother in law is stubborn. She has always been the breadwinner, the only child, and always taking care of others before her. She has been hurt and in pain for quite some time but just 4 weeks ago finally opened up to family about how much pain she really was in living 3000 miles away from anyone. I flew over to take care of her and moved her back with me in California.
She is the strongest person I know. But with the pain and the nausea she is refusing to eat due to fear of vomiting. She only has a few bites here and there. She's not drinking enough again from the nausea. No matter how much I tell her she is more likely to vomit from the medication with an empty stomach.
And here is the kicker. We haven't started treatment yet. There are so many masses and she is in so much pain I am scared. I keep telling her we need to fight there is hope cuz we haven't been seen by oncologist here in California. And her son, my husband doesn't help much. He helps but in abstract ways. Like going shopping for me. Or taking care of the dog. While I am changing his mother's diaper and giving meds and feeding her and keeping track. I don't want to blow up on my husband when I ask for his help, when I ask for a day to myself due to my medical condition which is fibromyalgia. I need a break sometimes too. I understand that it's hard for him it's his mother. I don't want to force him to help me. So I feel alone in this caregiving. I have never done it before. I know we made the right choice by going to California but her pain is so much worse.
Any help or advise is appreciated.