Greetings. I have a friend who has been dealing with ovarian cancer for some years. She is only in her early 30s, but she just found out that she is in the advanced stages of cancer, and that she shouldn't expect to live more than a few months. This person is probably my best friend in the world, and I want to do everything I can to support her, but I am trying to find out what to expect.
She just began the kemotherapy (sp?) process today. I am just wondering if anyone can sort of tell me, in whatever frank terms necessary, what I should expect her to go through. As painful as this all is, I don't really understand how people actually die from cancer, or how they are when it gets really bad.
I am 21. My mom just died of colon & liver cancer this November. It was an awful thing to go through. She was my best friend and the greatest mom ever. Cancer is something you never realize how bad it is til you go through it with someone you love. My mom was completely healthy and only 50. In less than a year she found out she had colon cancer, had 2 surgeries, had to get a colonostomy bag, had numerous different treatments (chemo & others), had to get procit shots and blood work weekly for low blood counts, and went to 90 lbs. from about only 113 to begin with, her bilirubin level skyrocketed and her liver quit functioning, and then she died. It was a roller coaster. Every day it seemed like we got more bad news. My mom never wanted to know all the details or a time frame b/c she didn't want to lose her hope. She had very strong faith in God and put all her trust in him. The only thing I can tell you is everyone's experience is different. Some better than others. We didn't get one good news report ever in the year which was hard to stay positive. Anyway I hope your friend comes through all of this ok. Keep her positive and be there for her. There are miracles. She will need you as a friend to be there. Chemo makes people extremely weak. My mom never stayed in bed for anything and after having cancer she could only go somewhere for an hour or two without being exhausted. Many of her friends abandoned her b/c I think they didn't want to have to watch her fade away and everyone thought she would make it through. So don't ever not go see her b/c it is hard on you. Trust me it will be, but do it anyway. She needs you. Keep me posted.
I remember when I was 12 years old and my grandfather was diagnosed with lung cancer. Every detail of those three years and every single memory, even the smallest ones have been carried with me now for 11 years. I can say honestly that having all of these memories was maybe not the best thing for me to go through or see each day, but now that i've gotton older I am thankful that I have them. There wasn't ever a day when he thought he was actually dying. I can remember my grandma saying things like "Who is goig to help me?" and he'd reply "What's wrong with you, I will help you." I can remember the day they said he went into remission, he went back to work at the paper mill and resumed many of his normal activities. I used to go to his bedside when they said the cancer had spread to his brain and he still wasn't down about it. They did surgery and removed what they possibly could and eventually he became bedridden and at 12 years old I would exercise his legs everyday because he really believed in his heart that he would walk again and I didn't want to take that away from him. I've realized there are times in our lives when we have to take the initiative and be the strong heart for the weak however hard that may be. The best advice I can give to you is use 100% of your heart and 110% of your hope. You don't have to be old to be strong for someone. WHEN she pulls through this then you'll be thankful for that hope and IF she doesn't you'll be thankful for your heart. Take everything day by day, don't diminish her dreams if she gets bad news and is still optimistic, be optimistic too. However strong your friendship is now, it will be 210% stronger either way.