In the morning the Neurologist, Dr. Hammer came to see us. She said she had referred us to Dr. Goldman as she would be out later in the week and wanted to ensure we had continuity of care. She answered our questions, showed us the MRI, explained how an operation might proceed, assured us that this was a very good time for the pregnancy for an operation, and assured us that the chances of success for where the tumor was located were very good. Dr. Goldman would be in to see us later that morning to evaluate Jenney and would most likely want to operate as soon as possible.
When Dr. Goldman came to see us, my impressions were that he was timid, but upon further interactions I now see it as a quiet calmness. He was well spoken, gentle, positive, and very knowledgable. We felt comfortable with him almost immediately, and confident that surgery was the right approach. We were scared, but hopeful. He explained the procedure to us, the risks, and said he had it scheduled for Thursday. He would ideally have liked to wait until the baby was 26 weeks, but even pushing the surgery to Thursday was risky. I asked him if there was any way he could move it up and he left us to see what he could do. He was back shortly and notified us that he could move it up and it would be 7:15am Tuesday morning instead. We thanked him profusely. The thought of going even one more day with these headaches, even though they were only coming around 1.5 hours in between, and with slightly less intensity, was just unbearable.
I stayed with Jenney and her headaches until around 2pm on Monday and apprehensively left to go home. I wanted to be there when the kids got off of the bus at 3:45. I spent a little time at the house, empty except for Dante and his whining, cleaning up the place a bit, crying, praying, and trying to find strength. Sebastian was at the neighbors house so I walked over to get him and take him for a little walk in the woods out back. Nature has always been a source of strength and solace in my life. One of the chickens was out so Bash and I chased her back into the pen while I talked on the phone with my Mom.
Walking down the lane to get the kids from the bus, I talked with my neighbors and told them what news I had so far. The kids greeted me with big hugs when they got off the bus and we all walked back to the house. Bash wanted to go back to the neighbors and wouldn’t come into the house. I told them all I had a surprise, and that Nonna (Jenney’s Mom) was coming tomorrow. “Why? Where’s Mom?” You can’t pull one over on Viola apparently.
I reminded them of when Sebastian had to go to the Dr to get the lump under his chin taken out, and told them that Mommy has something similar but in her brain. This was why she was having headaches and that they needed to remove it to make her feel better. The boys went off to pick up some toys, and I got Viola to help me unpack our clothes from our trip to San Diego upstairs.
In the middle of unpacking, Viola started to cry. I hugged her, and cried with her. I kept saying, “Mommy will be alright. Mommy will be fine. But we have to help each other now, and love each other. We have some hard work to do.” She dried her tears and helped me put away the clothes and afterwards thanked me for letting her help me. God, she’s so precious. Then she asked if she could go play with Scarlett, our neighbor, and I told her I wanted to leave at 5:30 to go see Mommy and have dinner with her at the hospital. She said she’d be home by 5:20. Such a wonderful child.
After loading the kids into the van, we drove to the hospital. When we arrived at the hospital, we went directly up to see her and we all hugged, cried, and then talked. The nurse came and grabbed some ice cream for us all. Then I ushered the kids down to the cafeteria to grab some dinner and we brought it back to the room where we all ate together. Of course it wasn’t our typical family dinner, but it was family dinner. Then we left Jenney for the night to go home. I remember the boys jumping over the tile design on the hospital hallway floor, as kids are want to do.
Jenney’s brother, Jim came during the night after stopping in to see Jenney for a while in the ICU, which is where they transferred her after we left. I never even heard him come in. I was so exhausted, and slept like the dead until my alarm went off at 4am.