Saturday, August 15, 2009


Dr. Pang predicted that Jackie would suffer as the brain stem tumor became more aggressive. He said that she would probably experience headaches, vomiting, and possibly lose her sight, speech, and hearing.

The good news is by God's grace Jackie experienced little to no suffering. Prior to having a brain stem tumor Jackie ran everywhere she went. She continued to do so for about a week after her diagnosis and then went from running to walking to crawling. This progression went quickly so that by the fourth week after her diagnosis we were carrying her around to where she wanted to go. Over a few weeks she did lose her speech but could grunt and would point to where she wanted us to take her. However, she still could laugh and did so quite often. :-)

A brain tumor can be like roots on a tree that can grow in a million and one different directions in the brain affecting various motor functions and body parts as it spreads.

The amazing thing was that she never lost any cognitive ability. I was playing an ELMO video game with her two days before she died. Fortunately Jackie never experienced any headaches or vomiting. She never lost her sight although her eyes did become crossed. But she said they didn't hurt and that she could see just fine. She never lost her hearing. Hospice helped us the last couple weeks of her life and she was on morphine for the last two days. She passed away very peacefully on a Saturday morning in my arms.


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