About Kimberly N.
On December 25, 2019 I was thrust into a role I never thought I would have to be, cancer caregiver to my 10 year-old son. Only one year earlier I was one of three caregivers for my mother who was battling breast cancer, but this would be so much more than that. On December 31, 2019 he underwent brain surgery, and they believe they got the majority of the tumor. Two days later he began showing symptoms of posterior fossa syndrome. He was unable to speak. My son the one who has an imagination to rival Stephen Speilberg, the one who I wish I coudl see what he saw when he played with his imagination, with all the pew pews, and blasts, could not speak. He was also unable to walk on his own both due to the sydrome as well as the traumatic brain injury he now suffered from after the trauma from surgery. After two weeks and watching Moana for the hundredth time he started to sing along! I didn’t leave his side in his hospital room for more than a few minutes at a time and listening to him sing was the most amazing sound since the first time I heard him cry. My son and I had to move from our home into an apartment that would be our home away from home, that was just down the street from the hospital he would be having daily radiation treatments for six weeks at. Every day for fifteen minutes he would receive radiation to his brain and spine, and every friday following radiation he would receive chemotherapy. He began to loose weight and required a feeding tube, which he threw up several times, so they tried a feeding tube in his intestines, which he also threw up. Unfortunately, one of the times he threw up was while he had a full face mask on receiving radiation. If you have never seen how slow the doors open in a radiation room, you would not understand how thankful I am that he didn’t asphyxiate waiting for someone to come and sit him up. He was on medication every two hours aroud the clock to try to keep his nausea under control. They finally had to surgically place a feeding tube in his intestines bypassing his stomach all together. Once his radiation was complete we were able to move back home, because he would only need to be at the hospital once a month for chemotherapy for the next nine months. These were all day appointments and we would often stay overnight, as some were two day events. He was hospitalized with illnesses and infections and every time it was me, mom, that he wanted by his side, and there would be no other way I would rather be. During his treatment I allowed him to chose my haircolors, which I did at home. The most challenging was when he chose rainbow. With the help of my daughter we were able to get the rainbow that he wanted, and he really enjoyed having total control over something. Today I am blessed that he and his brother are back to their funny antics, and yes I am even happy to hear their bickering. His journey is far from over as he still struggles with learning issues, balance, and daily injections for growth hormones, on top of the thyroid medicine he will need for the rest of his life. I could not have chosen to be a caregiver to a better patient, and I am so blessed to be not only his caregiver, but his mother.