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The good, bad and ugly from the Fileman abode

AZ Leah


Hi fellow survivors and caregivers: Time to again bring you up to date with the goods and not-so-good happenings here at our Tucson abode. While I am grateful that I qualify for home health care, it takes up a few hours every day and is very tiring. That’s nothing compared to what Jerry is going through. I arrange for people to drive him for all of his appointments, including radiation and as of last Thursday chemo. Also grocery shopping and who is going to bring in our trash etc. Its hard being in a brace and not being able to BLT – bend, lift, twist, or I could damage the disc even more. Jerry needs a lot more help than I can give him but thank God home health was just arranged for him also although it will be more grooming than anything. He will have the same nurse which is very convenient, as she knows many of Jerry’s problems already. Meanwhile I have a long-term care policy and I haven’t had time to call them. There is a couple who works out where we do and she has got the ball rolling on that. She said it should cover a lot more than we have with home health including evening meals including.


Everything I have been doing, including rehab for myself and financial and home care and appts and drivers have taken a lot of time. I have not faced the grief until this week when Jerry lost a bunch of hair due to radiation and what is left is thin and gray. He has lost 25 lbs and looks at least 10 years older. It was just 3 weeks ago that he was working out daily and had the body of a 50 year old (he is 74). I admitted to myself that I have escaped in reading, knitting and playing computer games. I spent about ½ hour a morning with God and I think that is what has kept me going.


Jerry has been buried in TV moves except for the many dr. appts he has had and radiation. We just heard tonight that chemo start this week. I think Jerry is leaving denial and slowly facing reality, especially when he looks in the mirror. When we start my long term care, it will include house cleaning, taking our garbage, picking up our mail, doing wash, changing the bed, making sure our meals are prepare and they will do it if needed. Also grocery shopping, driving to dr. appts and they even wait with you. The will even take me to beauty shop to get my hair cut. We don’t pay anything except cost of items purchased and $1 /mile when transporting me. This is my policy (Jerry couldn’t get l/t insurance when he tried because he is diabetic; I don’t think they could refuse him now). However, the benefits I will get will also benefit him through me. I I’ve been paying on this policy since 1997 so I will probably have paid more than they will end up paying out. It starts tomorrow so we’ll see. I will report on the results when I know more.


Jerry’s radiation ended after 10 work-day treatments. The dr. was pleased because he said the tumors in his head have shrunk and chemo should take care of the rest of them. He has had a rough time with nausea, thus eating has been almost impossible. He had his first chemo treatment Thur., will have blood work-up this Thurs. then 2 more weeks before another chemo treatment then do it all over again. I am going to call his oncologist tomorrow and tell him about the extent of his nausea. Today he would have opted for an IV or feeding tube but they say DO NOT go to the hospital because germs lurk all over and he is very vulnerable.


Prayers of course are welcomed. I hope this week I can make a chat but my schedule has been more hectic than before I had home health and it always leaves me ready for a nap.

I miss all of your guys and girls. People here have helped me immensely but now my long-term will really help. Bye for now until sometime in the future. I still have faith and hope. After all, love is the most important thing and Jerry and I sure have that. Hugs from Leah

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Leah, our love and prayers you have. Ray and I have been going through some problems too with his health so I know facing reality is tough and it is easier to lose ourselves in reading, the computer etc.


Please keep us updated as much as you can so we can pray for your immediate needs.



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