Many of my friends and regular readers will remember this photo of my friend Jo Ann and myself. This was taken last year just before Jo Ann and I left for the Charley Pride concert. She had the tickets given to her and had chosen to invite me along. I'm so glad I went because now Jo Ann is in critical condition.
Last December, Jo Ann was diagnosed as having cancer of the lower jaw. They operated December 23rd and the prognosis was she was cancer free. The health care system chose to believe that, even though the cancer had spread from her jaw to her lymph nodes. They didn't do anything else except take care of the jaw...no X-rays or tests to see if the cancer had spread.
About two weeks ago, I tried several times to reach my friend. No answer. This was very unusual because she has a big family and someone is usually home. I finally got her and she told me that she's been to the ER and several doctors in those three days. They had diagnosed her with cancer of the lungs. The right lung was full stage 4 and there was some cancer in her left lung as well. Terminal, they said.
Jo Ann was in the hospital for 3 days and then went out of town for an appointment with her cancer doctor. He sent her home and said they would talk about chemo on the next visit.
A few days later, Jo Ann was on oxygen at home. She was very weak and not doing well. She returned to hospital last Friday night around midnight. I've seen her several times since then and her siblings have flown in from eastern Canada and the USA.
Today I went to see her and once again the cancer has spread. It is now in her stomach and her liver. She told me the doctor has been bugging her to have chemo but she has no desire to do that. I told her it was her choice and that she needed to stick to her guns and do what she wanted to do.
I know the inevitable. My friend is going to pass from this earthly plane. I wonder how I will cope. We have talked at least 3 times a week for all those years... more often everyday. I'm not upset because I have lost many loved ones to cancer. I'm well aware of the circle of life. However, my one desire is that she not suffer.
Jo Ann is on morphine and resting comfortably. Please pray that she will continue to live out her life without the severe pain she was feeling a couple of weeks ago.