Friday, August 24, 2012
Summer 2012 has been filled with ups and downs, and I am so grateful for the "ups" in my life. After my lung cancer surgery I am cancer free...........no chemo...........no radiation...........just five years of follow-up with my oncologist. Knowing that the surgeon was able to remove all of the cancer is definitely a huge "up" in my life.
Another really significant "up" is my only grandchild's recovery from a very scary experience. He and his parents came from Tokyo to visit me. I am always thrilled to see them since we are separated by so many miles. My son and grandson were to take a side trip to Texas, and shortly after the plane departed my grandson experienced tremendous pain in his back and shoulder. On board were a doctor, a paramedic, and a nurse, but no one had any idea what was wrong with him (no one had a stethoscope) so he was given oxygen for the remainder of the flight and advised to go to the nearest urgent care facility upon arrival at DFW Airport. Urgent Care doctors could not determine what was wrong with him but, thankfully, decided to take a chest x-ray which revealed one of his lungs was partially collapsed. An ambulance ride to the nearest hospital emergency room followed, a chest tube was inserted and he was admitted to the hospital.
After a week of being unable to get his lung to remain inflated on its own, he underwent almost the same surgery I had just had weeks earlier. He was in the hospital for 13 days and then remained in Texas for two additional weeks waiting to be released to fly (not only back to the desert where I live but back to Tokyo). We were all very relieved when they made it safely back to Tokyo last weekend with no problems of any kind.
My grandson is close to six feet tall at age 16, and he is extremely thin. The doctors who treated him said that he had spontaneous pneumothorax which is not uncommon in teenage boys and young men who are very tall and thin. Spontaneous pneumothorax is a collection of air or gas in the space between the lungs and the chest that "collapses" the lung and prevents it from inflating completely. They cannot predict when it happens or what if anything precipitates the collapse of the lung, but I can assure you it is a very scary experience for the patient and family.
My grandson is doing well and this week started his junior year in high school. I too am feeling well and looking forward to Fall and Winter 2012. Despite a long absence from my blog and on-line shops I very much appreciate all of you who continued to read posts and visit both shops www.malcolmfortots.etsy.com and www.malcolmfortots.com
My family and I have been truly blessed and are thankful for the outcome of this memorable summer.