How to say this...
I'll just give a short summary of my mom's medical history and my experiences from it...
I grew up knowing my mom wasn't "normal" ... a lot of the stuff I've seen other kid's mothers do, my mother couldn't. .. Why? .. When I was at the age of five or six, my mom had her adrenaline glands removed because of a pheochromocytoma
tumor that grew there. 90-95% of her adrenaline glands were removed, and she was the first to have ever survived this type of operation. (The other guy died either after or during the operation, they of course told her AFTER they did it.) Since then, she's on average had to receive a surgery about six to seven years because another tumor would grow and it'd have to be removed. This was normal for me.
Fast forward six or seven years, a tumor grew in my mom's fifth lumbar of her back. The tumor was so large and had eaten so much of the bone that the tumor alone was supporting her back. Scary, eh? This was around the time we met probly the greatest man to come into my mother's life, Dr. Jakoby. He understood her condition and it was either him or someone else at Barnes & Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, MO that diagnosed her with VHL, or Von Hippel Lindau disease. When they removed the tumor, they had to build a cage to replace the fifth lumbar of her back and had to put a bar in the center of the vertabrate(sp?) for support.
About five or six years after that, she had a tumor in her hip. This was removed, same old, same old. The surgeon that did it this time wasn't... the best... our opinion of him was he could careless whether or not what happened to my mom before, during or after the operation. He acted like he was only a surgeon for the money, and other patients have complained about him as well. During this surgery, he hit a nerve in my mom's leg, the ciatic nerve, which has made it harder for her to walk, but she doesn't use a cane, she's too strong for that.
A year later she had a tumor in her skull. .... that was a shocking point in our life. We were told of the different phases of her disease, and once it reached the brain, it was near the end. Well, it did, but it didn't get inside the brain, thankfully. This time, she got a REALLY good surgeon, and had been doing brain surgery for YEARS (and he's a Mac user! and a firm believer of Hawk's "Get a Mac"
) .. so he easily did my mom's brain surgery and she didn't have to get her head shaved, which we were under the impression that she would when she did have surgery on the head.
Now comes the real bump in the road. Because her hormone level didn't drop after having the tumor in her skull removed, (which is their way of checking if there is a tumor present, they use MRI/CT scans to pinpoint the location) they did a bunch of MRIs, CT scans, etc. and found, wait, get ready for it. Ready? They found a tumor in her right lung, a tumor in her liver, a tumor in the middle of her back, and two cysts on her ovaries. They also found out she has a brain condition called Chiari Malformation
While MedicAid covers the surgeries, medical expenses, etc. here's the problem: After all these surgeries she'll have to have, she won't have any way of working (yes, she works.) and in turn, won't have a way of earning an income and paying bills. Yes, she gets disability, but she doesn't get enough, sadly. Which is where my question to you comes, would you (all of you AG readers) be willing to help pay for some, most or all of the bills that she has to pay for a few months? She normally pays at most $800 a month, and altogether, she'll probly have to recover for about three to four months, which equals to $2400 to $3200 dollars. I set up a PayPal account for her, so those that would be willing to donate ANYTHING, could online. Her PayPal account name is *removed* ... thanks for all the support and donations that people have sent in.
Thank you, and BIG THANK YOU from her.
EDIT: I started a small journal (i.e.... only a few posts, I'm not much of a journal person, so I gave up on it.) of the specifics of right after the surgery on her skull. You can read it here.
EDIT: I also forgot to mention one other thing about my mom's disease... in most cases, the pheochromocytoma tumors are benign, in other words, they're not cancerous, but for some reason (in very, VERY rare cases) they're cancerous with my mom. ... She's the lucky one. =\ (or unlucky, however you choose to see it.)