My Husband...My Hero!!

by Claire Hendrickson
(Medford WI)

He doesn't agree with the hero part but it's my opinion so he will have to deal with it!

Jim, my husband, was diagnoised with pancreatic cancer May 14, 2012...seven days after his 59th birthday. He had been sick since October of 2011 and the doctors couldn't figure out why until he turned yellow. Family doctor saw him and said he looked like a banana with a mustache...we all have a sense of humor! So off he went to a GI doctor and then the diagnosis...pancreatic cancer...the death sentence. Then off to the oncologist...treatment options for life. Well four years after the first symptoms started he is still here and we are coming up on one more Christmas together.

He is not doing very well right now but he still wakes up every morning in a good mood with a bit of a smile. His gets around by wheel chair now...the kids are fighting over the color of the flames to paint on the sides! He is on oxygen all the time but we have to be careful since he also has COPD on top of the cancer. His time is coming to an end on this earth but he does with the doctor tells him...at least for the most part.

Just a note about his medical care...outstanding! From the first nurse, all the doctors and home medical people...outstanding from the very beginning. These people gave hope and life where we thought there was nothing but death. They will always hold a huge place in my heart for what they have done for my husband through this whole process.

He has been through two different chemo treatments and radiation to control the cancer. Still on the second kind of chemo but only when his blood counts are good. One treatment and then a few weeks off so the counts come back enough to do it again. We have found it is easier to set short term goals and move on to the the next one. One day at a time is the best we can do...it works for us.

My hero continues to fight hard to stay with his family as long as he can. Each of our kids come a few days at a time to help with getting him up in the morning, the daily routine and to bed at night. They are finding out how much their skinny little runt of a Pa weighs! They are learning a good life lesson in helping to take care of their Pa when he really needs them. He is still teaching them how to live and they don't even realize it yet.

We have talked openly about living and dying. We took care of all the paperwork early so when the time came for the end of life, we could concentrate on living and not be concerned about what will happen after death. So we have all our duckies in a row and just take it one day at a time and enjoy the minutes.

This is our road in life right now. The key is life...not death. We all have to go someday and that we have no choice in. We do have a choice in the way we live...even with cancer...and after cancer.

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Dec 17, 2015
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Praying for Strength
by: Jane

Lisa,

You are so very much in my thoughts and prayers as your family journeys this road too. May you find unexpected moments of sweet love and joy this Christmas season right where you are...asking the Grace-Giver to hold you close and give your brother strength and peace for each new day.

Always, Jane

Dec 11, 2015
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Thank you
by: Lisa

Thank you for sharing your beautiful story. It encourages me so much, as we face each day with my brother's bout with the same type cancer.

Dec 11, 2015
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Choosing So Well...
by: Jane

Oh Claire,

This is more than a beautiful tribute to your hero...it is a call to each one of us, a challenge to Choose the way we live, no matter where the road in life takes us.

You have chosen so well, so wisely. Your family is simply blessed and I know your husband would just as easily call you his heroine :-)

Praying for you all as you journey together...for Grace in abundance, for Peace to greet each new day and for Joy in the strong love you share. Asking God to hold you and your husband close this night. May you feel covered with His Wings of Mercy...

Thank you so much for sharing your story. You are a light in the darkness. In Grace, Always, Jane

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