- Deep cleaning
- Organization of closets, cupboards, and pantry
- New family pictures hung on the walls
- Curtains in the kitchen windows and kids bedrooms
- Front porch cleaned off (including the diaper bucket!)
- New couches
- New 'big boy' beds for the twins
- New comforters for all the kids' beds
- A new toilet in the upstairs bathroom that actually flushes!
- Fixed gate to the backyard and raingutters
- Ripped out bushes in front yard and planted flowers, brought in woodchips
- Weeded and planted a garden
- Washed and cleaned out the family car, had it serviced, filled it up with gas
- Etc., Etc., Etc.
MaeLynn was blown away by it all and wants to thank Nana's friends from the hospital, Dave, Karl, Chris, Logan 10th Ward youth, and the many many people she's not even aware of that helped with the project. As soon as we get our cameras/pictures coordinated, we'll post some of "the new" look!
Health-wise, MaeLynn is doing okay. She says the pain is minimal, as long as she eats "just right". This means eating tiny bits of food all day long. If she actually ate what would consist of a meal, she would feel much worse. Too much food at one time is really hard on her. She is also very exhausted all the time which makes it really hard to accomplish anything. She wonders if part of the exhaustion is just from the emotional stress of handling something of this magnitude.
Luckily, she has amazing friends and family who are more than willing to help out. Andy's sister takes the kids once a week, his aunt takes them another day. People have been bringing meals in a few times a week. The Relief Society in her ward sent around a sign-up sheet to see who would be willing to help and MaeLynn almost cried when she saw the list. Basically anyone who was in Relief Society that Sunday signed up. What a huge blessing to know there are so many people who can help.
Doctor-wise, Mae will be going to the Huntsman Center next Tuesday (June 30th) to get second opinions from an oncologist and a surgical oncologist. When she first found out she had this rare type of cancer, the doctors told her that her body would probably not respond to typical chemo, but then the oncologist in Logan made it sound like they SHOULD do chemo to address all the areas where the cancer is/might be. The doctor in Logan also consulted other specialists of neuroendocrine cancer and they agreed that this is what should happen.
The only problem is, there are no sure answers, and this makes it so hard to make a decision. Will the chemo prolong the pain? Quality is more important than quantity to MaeLynn. With some types of cancer, they have on-going clinical trials that people can be part of. But this cancer is so rare that there aren't any clinical trials happening right now.
There was one treatment that Andy and Mae heard of that seemed plausible...called octreotide. It included an injection in the muscle of very high doses of a synthetic version of a hormone your body makes. The side effects didn't sound as awful as chemo, but then MaeLynn found out that her body's seratonin production would be inhibited (which she already struggles with), and absorption of medications and food would be stopped. So basically, she'd have constant diarrhea and crippling depression. Not worth it.
MaeLynn has had several priesthood blessings and she really feels at peace with whatever may come. She knows that the end of her life will not be the end of her family.
On a brighter and final note, she and her family have all kinds of trips and reunions planned for the next few weeks in Logan Canyon, Park City, Salt Lake, and Cottonwood Canyon in Wyoming. After July 16th, we'll start organizing more help for Mae.
She says THANK YOU again to everyone's help and prayers, and really appreciates everyone's support. Until next time....