It's like Christmas 1994 all over again :'-(

Well, I may have the exact year wrong…

It was on a boxing day in the mid-90s, I think it was 1994, that my grandfather on my mum’s side died of skin cancer (the other’s alive and well).

My grandmother remarried about 10 years ago, and they’ve been happy together. He’s been treated for cancer for the last few years; I’m not sure where it began but it’s affected his throat more recently (he had to have a tracheotomy) and radio- and chemo-therapy have weakened him a lot. At the start of this week he was admitted to a hospice, and as of this evening he’s sedated, on oxygen, and not expected to last much longer.

Obviously my relationship with Vic (which is his name) is different to the relationship I had with my grandad, but this is still a fairly big blow. A lot of it is sympathy for my grandmother, which I don’t recall from last time (I was a selfish little bugger at 13). It’s affected me too – I like Vic, and we get on well. He’s upbeat, kind, and mentally strong; in fact, if he weren’t sedated I’d bet on him over cancer any day if willpower can do anything.

I’ll be going up to see them tomorrow with my parents.

Edit: as of 5AM today (Christmas Eve), much of the above needs to be rephrased in the past tense.

3 Responses to “It's like Christmas 1994 all over again :'-(”

  1. Richard Hopkins

    I know how you feel.

    My mum passed away suddenly on Christmas morning. She was undergoing her first course of chemo for a suprisingly treatable cancer.

    That knocked her immune system.
    At 4pm christmas eve, my dad and sister took her to hospital as she wasn’t feeling well.
    At 6pm, they called me to visit (birmingham).
    At 8pm I got there and they were about to move her to High Dependancy
    At 10pm the cock up was sorted out and she was moved to ICU (purely for observation and better o2)
    At 11pm ICU had stablised her and one of my sisters went home to rescue her 2yo from a babysitter. The rest of us went to see mum.
    At 11:30 we were kicked out as she wanted to use the bedpan.
    At 12:00 we were told she wasn’t responding as expected and to call my sister back
    At 2 am we were told there were only a couple of things left to try and both were serious. One was a shot of drugs direct to the heart.
    At 2:10 am we were allowed back in to see her.
    By 2:15 she was dead.

    Aparantly some infections really are that fast. Some only take an hour from infection to death.

    Sorry to get so down on you all.

  2. Jenny

    Ouch. *hugs*

    Christmas is a hell of a time for things like this. I spent a few hours on Christmas Eve 2003 trying to park in Cheltenham to get to see my grandma in hospital. When I got to the hospital, I said “I’m here to see Mrs Radcliffe” and the nurse said “I’ll get the Sister for you” and I thought “Ah, she’s gone then”, and, of course, I was right.

    Then I spent the rest of Christmas Eve trying to find the Registrar in Cheltenham to get the death registered.


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