HI Folks,

Well my wife had her results this morning after a wait of about 4 weeks. The needle biopsies confirmed the neck tumours are malignant and the MRI scan has shown a significant tumour at the base of her tongue on which they want to do a surgical biopsy under general anaesthetic but must first have a case conference with her Chest Consultant to establish if she is strong enough to take the anaesthetic (only a 15 minute procedure but still a full general. Until the surgical biopsy is done we will not know the type or stage of the tumour whether it is the primary or even the most appropriate treatment options.

Maggie's ENT Surgeon has already ruled out surgery, she is just not strong enough to face the tauma, so radiotherapy (she has the same radiologist I had who recognised me and was surprised to see me today for the first time in 7 years) chemotherapy and ????? We are in Scotland and I know there are drugs available here which are not yet available in England for cases where surgery is not an option.

I have no idea of her chances of survivability given her other problems but will endeavour to make her quality of life as good as she will let me and have pointed her to my own experience in praying it gives her hope. She knows she is not as strong as I was then and has accepted that surgery is not for her an option, but any treatment for this afflication is traumatic and damaging and I know she will suffer more than I did and she will make comparisons which I know will not be positive.

Can you give me confidence for the future guys and girls, I need to be strong but feel so very weak right now. For those with faith I will appreciate your prayers for Maggie and the whole family: I never ask "Why Me?" but we do need all the help we can get and I am not too proud to accept same! Alan
Original Post
Hi Alan,

I have just read your post. It was quite strange because I was thinking about you and wondering how Maggies results had turned out.

I am feeling for you both and although am not a religious person will say a special prayer of my own for you both.
My friend is a very devout Roman Catholic and all through my illness has prayed to St. Anthony on my behalf. I hope it will give you comfort that I'm going to ask her to light a candle and pray for you at mass.

My love and thoughts are with you both.
SusieR
Thank you Susie,

It is comforting to know that those who know us not will nevertheless intercede on our behalf, please extend my appreciation to your friend.

Your own journey continues but I love the new updated photo and am in awe of your personal strength of character, and pray God's blessing on you and all whom you love. Alan
Dear Alan,
Tomorrow is my open day for my doggie salon and i've been so engrossed in my project that everything else seems to have taken a back seat! But i couldn't let this post pass without offering you a hand to hold.
You've always been a pillar of wise words and support to people on here. & though we don't allhave your faith you make sure that HE doesn't over look us... just in case.
It's bizarre that your poor wife has been struck with a H&N cancer after the battle you faced yourself.
I'm sure you're aware that you have a tough time ahead. Dig inside yourself and prepare. On the days your wife is feeling low and depressed it will be for you to put on your jolly smile and see her through. &on the days when its YOU thats feeling low and depressed it will be for us to help you through.
You're entitled to ask, scream & shout "WHY ME?" But i'm still waiting for an answer. I guess we're just special Wink
The irony of getting these results on All Hallows Eve is almost unbelievable!
We love you and are here for you.
*keeping everything crossed*
Michelle x
Dear Alan,
Reading your post has really left me speechless. I would lay any bets that Maggie is also a person on who one can depend and like you has lent her shoulder many a times. I really wish from the very bottom of my heart, there was something I could do and I would gladly do it without thinking twice.
I have never met Maggie or you but you have become an intregal part of my life - a friend who gives me advise, laughs with me and prays not just for me but everyone. I am really feeling miserable just thinking of how devasted and miserable you must be feeling and repeating myself - there is nothing I could do except to pray.I am really feeling helpless which normally I do not.
Whatever the circumstances, do make her life as happy as ever. Do not refuse her anything and keep telling her how much you love her.

Though I am not excatly an atheist but I have never believed in splitting up various religions and I only pray to the almighty power. I will pray and also ask my mum who chants everyday with a group of about 50 people for those who undergoing so much misery and stress as you must be going through right now. I understand the chanting - an old buddhist chant is very powerful but one has to believe in it and the more who get together and chant the vibes get stronger then ever.

Once again, Alan - if I could , I truly would have done anything and I mean anything to see both of you happy. Do keep strong as Maggie needs you so much at this moment.

Take care and love you both,
Ananth
Hello Alan,

Unbelievable news. Robert too had base of tongue cancer. He also didn't have surgery but was given chemo and radiotherapy. Thankfully all turned out OK and I'm really hoping that things will go well for Maggie also. Robert seemed to have the whole of Scotland praying for him (I'm sure that included you) so we'll set them the same task again for Maggie (well it worked last time).

It goes without saying Alan that we are all here for you.

God bless

Lorraine
My Friends

Thank you for your thoughts, care, and concern love you all to bits. Chelle a milestone for you tomorrow, I am rooting for you but know without thinking that your venture will be a success because you will make it a success.

Ananth my old chum I feel your arms around me and Maggie I will be proud if your Mum thinks of us in her chants. My long departed Grandad who gave me and Maggie a Bible when we first proclaimed our Faith did that believing in an Almighty but said to me withoput apology that having studied many religions and professing none had he made his own Faith public then of all religions he would have chosen Buddism.

David and Sue so glad you are making it back to normality and though I have not said it out loud I was so pleased to hear of your promotion David like Chelle's Phonenix an omen and vote of confidence from the entity that cares for everything in his Creation.

And Lorraine my dear Lorraine I am about to go down stairs and tell Maggie of Robert's story. I know my good lady well, we celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary on Sunday and she could not cope with the terrors we speak of openly on these boards and what she does not know will not harm her but positive results will give much needed hope. I fear Maggie has left it too late to seek treatment, it is many months since she first had neck symptoms but comparatively recently that her swallowing and tongue became an issue, still she is pragmatic and I will love and cherish her and let her know the best wishes and prayers of everyone here.

Will keep you all posted over time, thanks for being there and thanks for caring all of you.

Alan
Dear Alan, I am so sorry to read that Maggies results are positive. I was hoping against hope you would have received good news, but from your description of her symtoms, I feared the worst, as I felt you did too.
Well the worst has happened, & its now time for us to "gird up our loins"& do all we can to support you & Maggie.
You know her better than us,but she may surprise you with her mental strength as she copes with her diagnosis & treatment.
Please dont despair at the length of time it took Maggie to acknowledge her symptoms, it took Brian 4-5mths before he took his neck lump seriously. He is now at 3yrs post treatment & improving all the time
I know you have great faith which will sustain you. I will pray to St Jude & St Rita on your behalf.Hope you have lots of help around you.
Love to you both, Fran.
Dear Alan
In my short time as a member here I have been deeply touched by the genuine community and family caring spirit that exists within this forum. In particular I was extremely grateful for your words of advice and concern, especially in the knowledge that you were then awaiting your wife's results and yet took the time to respond to me.

I am not a religious person, but after I read your sad news I visited the church across the road (for the first time) and lit a candle for you and Maggie.

I don't know about the power of prayer, but I do believe in the power of love and I am sure that the love that you and Maggie share will help you through the difficult times ahead, and no matter what happens that love will never die.

Thinking of you both,
Sara
hi alan
so sorry to hear your devastating news about your wife maggie we all know on here how you feel when the dreaded diagnosis is given. your world is totally turned upside down but alan you have always been so positive and caring to all of us and we have gained strengh from that it is now your turn for lots of support during this difficult time love bevx
Dear Alan
I hadn't realised how I was holding my breath waiting for your news and now it's come, all has drained from me. You poor, poor things. This result, even though it did sound inevitable is shitty in the extreme and definitely not fair.
You have been through so much yourself and coped but seeing Maggie go though the same thing will bring it all back on another level. You will also learn her experience as you see your love suffer. It cannot possibly be as bad as having the affliction yourself, I know, but it is heart renching to watch and feel so helpless.
Love is all around you Alan and I know you will take heart from that. I am not one to pray but I/we accepted everyone's offers of prayer as being their way of sending love and kind, positive thoughts our way. That is what we will be doing for you and yours. We all know it is a rough road and with no guarantees either way of the outcome. Making the most of every day and saying everything you ever wanted to say is the way to go.
All of our love, Alan. Keep us posted.
Deborah and Trevor
xo
Hi Alan!
One always wonders what it is that we have done wrong to be given yet another trial, and we think of all the other folks who go through life in total bliss, but I always think that we have been given this life as a trial and must do what destiny sets for us(God does this sound like a sermon, I hope not)so the only thing to do is to go ahead and live life to the full, my son had the dreaded C and survived and now goes through life one day at a time and is very happy with what has been dished up for him.
All you can do now is to keep looking forward and look after your lovelly Lady as I am sure Maggie looked after you during you C time and Know that you have an enormous number of friends all over the world that are thinging of you and Maggie during this time.
Stay Strong
Trev
Dear Alan,
I have been a bit of a silent member on this message board, but I have been following everyone's stories and hoping your wife would avoid this diagnosis. I am sure we can all remember being told the news and it is far from easy. I firmly believe the power of prayer pulled me through, so don't lose faith in the coming days and weeks. We will all be thinking of you. You have posted the news on the Survivor Stories thread - let's remain positive that Maggie will have a survivor story of her own to tell. Best wishes.
Dear Alan,
Yes - I have my arms around both of you and never want to let go. Its not everyday you interact with such lovely people without even ever having met. It seems I have known both Maggie and you all my life and I also feel that I too feel the pain you must be going through.
I truly admire you and this is not just out of the hat - you have been an inspiration for me in many a ways and its something I will never ever forget as long as I live.
The entire group of Budhist chanters have started their chanting for Maggie and it just continues for 24 x7, with various groups taking over from one another. My mum is a staunch believer in this form of karma and even though I am not too positive about it - I hope I am wrong and all the chanting will do some good.

My offer still stands - if there is anything and I mean anything I can do to make things more comfortable for Maggie and you, please do not ever hesitate to ask. Families do not ask - its expected.
Lots and lots of love,
Ananth
Dear Alan

I too was thinking about you this morning and thought we hadn’t heard from you in a while and thought I would drop you a line when I got chance this evening. Opened up my mail and oh dear, what we all suspected from your description has proved, beyond anyone’s hopes, to be positive and am l so sorry that this dreadful thing should hit you not once but twice. It just isn’t fair.

I remember the first time I posted on this board when I felt like has fallen down a big black pit and was sinking deeper. You were one of the first replies I received for which I will always be grateful, you gave me hope in your own pragmatic way, you are always there for sound advice and such support and comfort which you give so wisely, you have certainly been a great comfort to me. Whilst I am not as eloquent, as you, I will certainly be here for you.

Please tell Maggie, her problems sounds very much like Bill’s, his stage IV base of tongue cancer was given a 50/50 chance. Surgery would have left him without any quality of life and here we are seven months on after chemo and r/t, I know not completely out of the woods yet but the oncy is confident that the treatment has been successful. We go next week for a CT scan. So she must focus and have hope.

I am not religious so cannot pray for you but I will send out my hopes for you in my own way.


Angie
Hello what fantastic support, I have passed all your best wishes and success stories onto Maggie she is humbled and is coping with the news very well, I am so proud of her.

My sons and their ladies were out last night and that cheered up Maggie no end, we need to get the surgical biopsy done on her tongue asap, and I will not sit on my hand: I note others have had trouble with delays, but both her Chest and ENT Consultants are competent dedicated professionals who will endeavour I am sure to do their level best to help Maggie. Her Emphysema and Circulation problems however are definitely obstacles and the professionals will have to finely balance treatment against side effects.

However you are my strength and comfort, its nice to know you care; thank you from us both.

Alan
Hi Winnie,

My sons are Gavin 33, and Stephen 30 the younger is married the elder has a daughter from a past relationship (4 1/2). We have all been acutely aware of Maggie's ill health and previous disability for a long time and if you could see Maggie you would realise just from looking at her that she was far from well. However no amount of prigging would get Maggie to the GP as she feared admission to hospital and thus she would be unable to do as she pleased.

Only when she could bear the pain no longer and had to call in the GP to the house about 6 weeks ago did she concede that she had difficulty swallowing as well as the swollen neck. The GP treated her for an infection with antibiotics and even then it was not until two weeks later that at her regular chest clinic did her chest consultant listen to her speech and symptoms he ended his own consultation and referred her immediately to the ENT consultant. A 15 minute regular appointment then turned into 4 hours of immediate tests, needle biopsies and scoping.

So in answer to your query Winnie we have been expecting bad news for a long time, but thought that trouble would arise from her heart or lungs or both, not neck or tongue that came out of the blue - but when they did the needle biopsies and MRI scan the writing was pretty much on the wall.

The past is however now forgotten as we look with hope to the future we really want Maggie to survive but to be brutally honest she has first to want to survive: and we shall not know if that is her will until we can study her reaction to the treatment she must face which we all know is not a walk in the park.

I guess men hide their emotions more so than women, I think I am an exception because I have had to face circumstances which made me realise head on that tomorrow was never guaranteed. My sons have not faced their mortality yet and they have seen me pull through from two life threatening illnesses - but they know their mother, so they too are being pragmatic. Maggie's initial postiveness has been for the three of us a welcome if unexpected reaction to the worst diagnosis we could have expected but is giving us hope that Maggie will fight for her life.

The prayers and moral support of so many people from all around the world is a very real driver for Maggie to make that fight a good one.

Thank you all so much for caring, Alan.

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