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Decisions about a baby

Forums Caregiver Community Decisions about a baby

  • Post
    Terra
    Participant

    Hi, I haven't posted or responded to any posts for a long time.  Derek has been on a trial since he progressed to stage IV, randomied into the chemo arm for a right hilar node.  We have been concerned about two spots on his ribs that are now nothing, although he tested negative for BRAF he is positive for NRAS, and a third opinion from a cardiothorastic surgeon saysthe node is resectable with 20% complications.  We also should find out whether the DTIC is doing anything in a week and a half.

    Hi, I haven't posted or responded to any posts for a long time.  Derek has been on a trial since he progressed to stage IV, randomied into the chemo arm for a right hilar node.  We have been concerned about two spots on his ribs that are now nothing, although he tested negative for BRAF he is positive for NRAS, and a third opinion from a cardiothorastic surgeon saysthe node is resectable with 20% complications.  We also should find out whether the DTIC is doing anything in a week and a half.

    I returned to teaching in September after mat leave with my second child. We have a 3 and half year old and an 18 month old.  I just found out I was pregnant again.  Not to be too speciifc but it is diifciutl to see hopw this happened, since the spring Derek has had surgery and treatment and nerve problems so there wasn't much chance to get pregnant and I was on the pill, but here we are. 

    We are trying to decide what to do and I need some advice.  Derek has said he is not sure he can physically handle another baby and that emotional it is so difficult to look at the two we have now and know there is a very good chance he may not see them grow up let alone to rbing another into the world he may not know and of course we are both concerned, him more than me about how 1 parent can bring up 3 children.  Financially we are good, our parents live in town but are in thier 60s already.  I know this is our decision but I am having such difficulty and needed to hear what other patients and caregivers might have to say. 

     

    \Thank-you for responding

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  • Replies
      Fen
      Participant

      Having cancer doesn't insure an early demise nor does being healthy predict a long life.  Don't make a decision based on what  *could happen*.  Are you parents willing and able to step in and help?  Can they do it a lot?  How is Derek feeling physically right now?  His feelings are important, but how do you feel?   This is a tough one Terra – good luck and keep us posted.     

      Fen

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      Fen
      Participant

      Having cancer doesn't insure an early demise nor does being healthy predict a long life.  Don't make a decision based on what  *could happen*.  Are you parents willing and able to step in and help?  Can they do it a lot?  How is Derek feeling physically right now?  His feelings are important, but how do you feel?   This is a tough one Terra – good luck and keep us posted.     

      Fen

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      Lori C
      Participant

      This is just my opinion.  There are really no safe choices in this world.  There is dangerous action and dangerous inaction.    This is one of those times when no amount of analysis will give you a satisfactory answer.  I think – in all honesty – you should go with whatever you feel in your heart is best for you, but realize you will have doubts and uncertainties whatever choice you make.  It's just unavoidable. 

      It's kind of like choosing a treatment that turns out not to help; you can second guess it forever but when you made the decision, you weren't trying to screw things up – you were trying to make an impossible decision without the necessary information to do it flawlessly.   That's the nature of treating advanced cancer.  And with a choice like you are facing, it's the same thing. 

      Very best to you whatever you decide, and healing energy to your husband.

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        Terra
        Participant

        Thank-you for your replys – I feel after reading them I can breathe a little easier – grandparents are around, very close, but are aging.  We are in an ok financial position, our house is paid for and I am a teacher, so I have options for days off, etc., and work very close to our home and my children will go to school very close to our home.

        Derek feels physically inable to run after another child and emotionally distraught that he won't live a long life in order to see them grow up.

        It is a difficult decision because I feel this will stress him out too much (not good for cancer), but this baby did not asked to be conceived and I guess that in the end I feel I will be responsible for taking the life of one or the other.  That may sound terrible but that is how I feel. 

        Thanks for your responses.

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        Terra
        Participant

        Thank-you for your replys – I feel after reading them I can breathe a little easier – grandparents are around, very close, but are aging.  We are in an ok financial position, our house is paid for and I am a teacher, so I have options for days off, etc., and work very close to our home and my children will go to school very close to our home.

        Derek feels physically inable to run after another child and emotionally distraught that he won't live a long life in order to see them grow up.

        It is a difficult decision because I feel this will stress him out too much (not good for cancer), but this baby did not asked to be conceived and I guess that in the end I feel I will be responsible for taking the life of one or the other.  That may sound terrible but that is how I feel. 

        Thanks for your responses.

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        Terra
        Participant

        Thank-you for your replys – I feel after reading them I can breathe a little easier – grandparents are around, very close, but are aging.  We are in an ok financial position, our house is paid for and I am a teacher, so I have options for days off, etc., and work very close to our home and my children will go to school very close to our home.

        Derek feels physically inable to run after another child and emotionally distraught that he won't live a long life in order to see them grow up.

        It is a difficult decision because I feel this will stress him out too much (not good for cancer), but this baby did not asked to be conceived and I guess that in the end I feel I will be responsible for taking the life of one or the other.  That may sound terrible but that is how I feel. 

        Thanks for your responses.

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        Terra
        Participant

        Thank-you for your replys – I feel after reading them I can breathe a little easier – grandparents are around, very close, but are aging.  We are in an ok financial position, our house is paid for and I am a teacher, so I have options for days off, etc., and work very close to our home and my children will go to school very close to our home.

        Derek feels physically inable to run after another child and emotionally distraught that he won't live a long life in order to see them grow up.

        It is a difficult decision because I feel this will stress him out too much (not good for cancer), but this baby did not asked to be conceived and I guess that in the end I feel I will be responsible for taking the life of one or the other.  That may sound terrible but that is how I feel. 

        Thanks for your responses.

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      Lori C
      Participant

      This is just my opinion.  There are really no safe choices in this world.  There is dangerous action and dangerous inaction.    This is one of those times when no amount of analysis will give you a satisfactory answer.  I think – in all honesty – you should go with whatever you feel in your heart is best for you, but realize you will have doubts and uncertainties whatever choice you make.  It's just unavoidable. 

      It's kind of like choosing a treatment that turns out not to help; you can second guess it forever but when you made the decision, you weren't trying to screw things up – you were trying to make an impossible decision without the necessary information to do it flawlessly.   That's the nature of treating advanced cancer.  And with a choice like you are facing, it's the same thing. 

      Very best to you whatever you decide, and healing energy to your husband.

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      LizzM
      Participant

      With all the odds against you for getting pregnant there must be a reason that you did. I wouldn't discount that at all. This baby was placed in your lives for a reason. No one knows what the future will bring for anyone. Besides could you live with yourself if you decided not to have the baby? It may seem like the right thing for you to do now but in the long run it could be a nightmare you may never be able to forget. Good luck to you and may Derek feel better and better every day.

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      LizzM
      Participant

      With all the odds against you for getting pregnant there must be a reason that you did. I wouldn't discount that at all. This baby was placed in your lives for a reason. No one knows what the future will bring for anyone. Besides could you live with yourself if you decided not to have the baby? It may seem like the right thing for you to do now but in the long run it could be a nightmare you may never be able to forget. Good luck to you and may Derek feel better and better every day.

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      Jamietk
      Participant

      What a big decision to make, one that only you and your husband can ultimately make.  I completely understand why you have to take the cancer thing into consideration. When I was diagnosed over 5 years ago, I was hesitant to commit to anything long term. And sometimes struggled greatly committing to short term things. Your husband having stage IV cancer certainly gives you every right to have many concerns. Someone else said you must be pregnant for a reason. I agree with that, but certainly don't fault you for any decision you make. I myself had an early diagnosis and my Dr. says I only have a 1%-2% chance of recurrence at this point. I have every doctor's blessing to have a baby. Problem is, I can't. I'm 39 and have fertility issues. So now that I'm over the hump of having cancer, I still can't get pregnant. We have been looking into adoption. Contrary to what many people think, there are not an abundance of children to adopt. I do think things happen for a reason and maybe I don't have kids of my own because God intended for me to help raise my sister's 3 kids because she was not able to. So from my standpoint, I would do anything to have a child and cancer is not going to stop me. Paying for it is our biggest challenge right now.  But I understand your husband is stage IV and that does change your life and your decisions. I see both sides and could argue both all day. Cancer, unfortunately, does have to play a role in some decisions. On the other hand, God has allowed you to become pregnant for one reason or another. I'll be sending prayers and good vibes that you find peace with your decision. If you decide to have the baby, you and your families will make it work. People find a way to be resilient in the worst of situations. And a child would be another joy in your life.  If you decide to give it up for adoption, I speak from experience that an adopted child could be loved just like a biological. I sometimes can't imagine loving any child more than my sister's kids. They're like my own. And if you choose to terminate (not sure if that's a consideration for you), then I pray you feel good about your decision. There is no right or wrong decision and none of us can make that decision for you. But we will be here to support your decision. And I officially give you permission to say you hate cancer for doing this to you. We all do.

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        simone
        Participant

        Jamietk-

        Your reply really struck me and thought you gave wonderful advice and support.  My heart really went out to you.  After all you endured, you now struggle with fertility issues.  Agh…. I am so sorry.  I too give you permission to say that you HATE Melanoma.  It has taken so much already, I constantly feel like "isn't the fact that we had to deal with it enough"???   It's hard to make peace with this beast, but I hope you can.  It will give me hope that I can moving forward.  Right now, I am angry that I got this.  I guess we all are.  Everyone keeps telling me that I am so lucky that it's not worse staging.  I am unable to feel lucky now.   I hope your plans for a child/ or to raise your sister's children work out for you.  You sound like a really great person & those children/your sister are lucky to have you.

        I was recently diagnosed (1b) and am now faced with the "wait" to see if I have recurrence.  I will soon "age out" of having another child.  We had our heart set on it & now we feel robbed of that child due to my dignosis.  Every dr says wait a minimum of 2 yrs before getting pregnant.  And I thought my staging was "good" and that things were seeming like a really good prognosis.  Turns out, no one must truly think that if they say hold off having a child for 2+ years.  That in itself scares me… I mean, reallly?  You don't thiink I'll be around?  We don't know what to do… I also agreee w/ your adoption comments… thought there were an abundance of babies to adopt. 

        Anyway,  I appreciated your comments.  Thank you.

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        Janner
        Participant

        I think you have the 2 year waiting period a little wrong.  It isn't that no one thinks you won't be around in 2 years.  Stage 1B still has a good prognosis.  However, IF you were to have a recurrence, that most often happens within 2 years.  If you are pregnant, you can't be treated for this recurrence.  THIS is the reason for the wait.  The 2 years is time with the highest risk!  I had a stage IB lesion removed at 39 (my third primary).  I was also trying to conceive.  I understood the risks and chose not to wait the two years based upon my age.  My onc had agreed we would monitor me very closely.  Unfortunately, I was unable to conceive so the point was moot.   I did a ton of research and was happy with my choices.  Do your own research, then do what is best for YOU, not anyone else.

        Best wishes,

        Janner

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        Janner
        Participant

        I think you have the 2 year waiting period a little wrong.  It isn't that no one thinks you won't be around in 2 years.  Stage 1B still has a good prognosis.  However, IF you were to have a recurrence, that most often happens within 2 years.  If you are pregnant, you can't be treated for this recurrence.  THIS is the reason for the wait.  The 2 years is time with the highest risk!  I had a stage IB lesion removed at 39 (my third primary).  I was also trying to conceive.  I understood the risks and chose not to wait the two years based upon my age.  My onc had agreed we would monitor me very closely.  Unfortunately, I was unable to conceive so the point was moot.   I did a ton of research and was happy with my choices.  Do your own research, then do what is best for YOU, not anyone else.

        Best wishes,

        Janner

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        simone
        Participant

        Jamietk-

        Your reply really struck me and thought you gave wonderful advice and support.  My heart really went out to you.  After all you endured, you now struggle with fertility issues.  Agh…. I am so sorry.  I too give you permission to say that you HATE Melanoma.  It has taken so much already, I constantly feel like "isn't the fact that we had to deal with it enough"???   It's hard to make peace with this beast, but I hope you can.  It will give me hope that I can moving forward.  Right now, I am angry that I got this.  I guess we all are.  Everyone keeps telling me that I am so lucky that it's not worse staging.  I am unable to feel lucky now.   I hope your plans for a child/ or to raise your sister's children work out for you.  You sound like a really great person & those children/your sister are lucky to have you.

        I was recently diagnosed (1b) and am now faced with the "wait" to see if I have recurrence.  I will soon "age out" of having another child.  We had our heart set on it & now we feel robbed of that child due to my dignosis.  Every dr says wait a minimum of 2 yrs before getting pregnant.  And I thought my staging was "good" and that things were seeming like a really good prognosis.  Turns out, no one must truly think that if they say hold off having a child for 2+ years.  That in itself scares me… I mean, reallly?  You don't thiink I'll be around?  We don't know what to do… I also agreee w/ your adoption comments… thought there were an abundance of babies to adopt. 

        Anyway,  I appreciated your comments.  Thank you.

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      Jamietk
      Participant

      What a big decision to make, one that only you and your husband can ultimately make.  I completely understand why you have to take the cancer thing into consideration. When I was diagnosed over 5 years ago, I was hesitant to commit to anything long term. And sometimes struggled greatly committing to short term things. Your husband having stage IV cancer certainly gives you every right to have many concerns. Someone else said you must be pregnant for a reason. I agree with that, but certainly don't fault you for any decision you make. I myself had an early diagnosis and my Dr. says I only have a 1%-2% chance of recurrence at this point. I have every doctor's blessing to have a baby. Problem is, I can't. I'm 39 and have fertility issues. So now that I'm over the hump of having cancer, I still can't get pregnant. We have been looking into adoption. Contrary to what many people think, there are not an abundance of children to adopt. I do think things happen for a reason and maybe I don't have kids of my own because God intended for me to help raise my sister's 3 kids because she was not able to. So from my standpoint, I would do anything to have a child and cancer is not going to stop me. Paying for it is our biggest challenge right now.  But I understand your husband is stage IV and that does change your life and your decisions. I see both sides and could argue both all day. Cancer, unfortunately, does have to play a role in some decisions. On the other hand, God has allowed you to become pregnant for one reason or another. I'll be sending prayers and good vibes that you find peace with your decision. If you decide to have the baby, you and your families will make it work. People find a way to be resilient in the worst of situations. And a child would be another joy in your life.  If you decide to give it up for adoption, I speak from experience that an adopted child could be loved just like a biological. I sometimes can't imagine loving any child more than my sister's kids. They're like my own. And if you choose to terminate (not sure if that's a consideration for you), then I pray you feel good about your decision. There is no right or wrong decision and none of us can make that decision for you. But we will be here to support your decision. And I officially give you permission to say you hate cancer for doing this to you. We all do.

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      Jydnew
      Participant

      I'm not in your position, so it's impossible for me to give completely empathetic or relevant advice, but in reading your post, I assume you are making the choice between continuing or terminating the pregnancy, and if that's the case, the first thing that I thought was "I wonder how she'll feel if she loses them both?"  If you terminate the pregnancy, you aren't guarenteed your husband will live, and if you continue the pregnancy, you aren't guarenteed your husband's life will be shortened.  To be even more morbid, I have to add that through my horrid pregnancy experiences, I've learned you aren't guarenteed that your baby will outlive yourself or your husband… Another thing I sense is that you are beating yourself up a bit for becoming pregnant, and you're also assuming future blame/responsibility/control for your husband's outcome, when it's, unfortunately, somewhat out of your control. 

      Best to your in your decision.

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      Jydnew
      Participant

      I'm not in your position, so it's impossible for me to give completely empathetic or relevant advice, but in reading your post, I assume you are making the choice between continuing or terminating the pregnancy, and if that's the case, the first thing that I thought was "I wonder how she'll feel if she loses them both?"  If you terminate the pregnancy, you aren't guarenteed your husband will live, and if you continue the pregnancy, you aren't guarenteed your husband's life will be shortened.  To be even more morbid, I have to add that through my horrid pregnancy experiences, I've learned you aren't guarenteed that your baby will outlive yourself or your husband… Another thing I sense is that you are beating yourself up a bit for becoming pregnant, and you're also assuming future blame/responsibility/control for your husband's outcome, when it's, unfortunately, somewhat out of your control. 

      Best to your in your decision.

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      Ranisa
      Participant

      I know that each person is different…I am so sorry to hear about having to make this choice.  If it was me…..I would hold onto every part of my husband and what we had together that I could.  This baby is a part of him.  If you husband doesn't live as long as you would hope imagine looking into his eyes 5 years from now.  Or maybe the baby will have his nose.  Any part of him.  Children are blessings.  Life is hard, really hard.  We all deserve a chance at it. 

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      Ranisa
      Participant

      I know that each person is different…I am so sorry to hear about having to make this choice.  If it was me…..I would hold onto every part of my husband and what we had together that I could.  This baby is a part of him.  If you husband doesn't live as long as you would hope imagine looking into his eyes 5 years from now.  Or maybe the baby will have his nose.  Any part of him.  Children are blessings.  Life is hard, really hard.  We all deserve a chance at it. 

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      JohnHen
      Participant

       

      If your husband was not afflicted with cancer, would you be having this conversation? I am a father of three wonderful children, the youngest being 25. My children have been the center of my wives’ and my lives. They have brought us both tremendous joy as children and now as adults and as our best friends. They have enriched our lives in ways that nothing else could.

      When our youngest son, Danny, was born, he had a rare disease that ultimately led to 11 years of hospitalizations, numerous surgeries, and at age 11, end stage liver failure. Within days of death, he received the gift of life through a small bowl and liver transplant. During those 11 years, I offered God my life in exchange for my son’s life on several occasions because I could not stand the thought of losing him. God was merciful and brought my son through many brushes with death and helped my wife and I always be there for him and for each other. This June, he will earn his Bachelor of Arts Degree and we are so proud and blessed that he was brought into our lives.

      There is nothing in life that has been more valuable to me and to my wife than our children and grandchildren. They have been the gift that just keeps on giving and hopefully will be there to love us as we have loved them, in our last days.

      Cancer is a very difficult part of all our lives. I hope that as I go through my journey, I never lose sight of the importance of my children and my willingness to do anything for them. Life is so much more than my cancer. I hope that my story helps bring some clarity into yours.

      John

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      JohnHen
      Participant

       

      If your husband was not afflicted with cancer, would you be having this conversation? I am a father of three wonderful children, the youngest being 25. My children have been the center of my wives’ and my lives. They have brought us both tremendous joy as children and now as adults and as our best friends. They have enriched our lives in ways that nothing else could.

      When our youngest son, Danny, was born, he had a rare disease that ultimately led to 11 years of hospitalizations, numerous surgeries, and at age 11, end stage liver failure. Within days of death, he received the gift of life through a small bowl and liver transplant. During those 11 years, I offered God my life in exchange for my son’s life on several occasions because I could not stand the thought of losing him. God was merciful and brought my son through many brushes with death and helped my wife and I always be there for him and for each other. This June, he will earn his Bachelor of Arts Degree and we are so proud and blessed that he was brought into our lives.

      There is nothing in life that has been more valuable to me and to my wife than our children and grandchildren. They have been the gift that just keeps on giving and hopefully will be there to love us as we have loved them, in our last days.

      Cancer is a very difficult part of all our lives. I hope that as I go through my journey, I never lose sight of the importance of my children and my willingness to do anything for them. Life is so much more than my cancer. I hope that my story helps bring some clarity into yours.

      John

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      NicOz
      Participant

      The simple fact of life is, none of us know what's going to happen at any given time. I can understand many of the feelings that are coursing through both of you, but all I can really say is this: I wasn't expected to reach my first Christmas after diagnosis, and I'm now about to hit my third. Hindsight may be 20/20, but the rest of us mere mortals just muddle through as best we can with the information we have to hand, and hope we don't stuff up too badly (well, maybe not everyone else, but certainly that's how I feel :D)

      When cancer takes away our choices, I think that's when it wins. If it stops us from doing something we want to do, then it sidles back to the front of our consciousness, and takes control. I'm sure he DOES find the thought of it difficult, and I'm sure part of you probably does too. But the two of you need to really talk about it and hash it out. There is no easy decision, and only the most callous would ever judge you (and those judgements aren't worth even wasting a second on).

      We don't know what exactly is around the corner. we can hazard guesses, but as many have found to be true, there are no absolutes and no certainty. Thinking of you both xxx

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      NicOz
      Participant

      The simple fact of life is, none of us know what's going to happen at any given time. I can understand many of the feelings that are coursing through both of you, but all I can really say is this: I wasn't expected to reach my first Christmas after diagnosis, and I'm now about to hit my third. Hindsight may be 20/20, but the rest of us mere mortals just muddle through as best we can with the information we have to hand, and hope we don't stuff up too badly (well, maybe not everyone else, but certainly that's how I feel :D)

      When cancer takes away our choices, I think that's when it wins. If it stops us from doing something we want to do, then it sidles back to the front of our consciousness, and takes control. I'm sure he DOES find the thought of it difficult, and I'm sure part of you probably does too. But the two of you need to really talk about it and hash it out. There is no easy decision, and only the most callous would ever judge you (and those judgements aren't worth even wasting a second on).

      We don't know what exactly is around the corner. we can hazard guesses, but as many have found to be true, there are no absolutes and no certainty. Thinking of you both xxx

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      Sherron
      Participant

      For me, a baby is a gift from God…It's a part of you and your husband.  I think God will find a way for you to take care and provide for another child.  He nevers gives you more than you can handle.  Think carefully about your decision.  Best  Wishes on your decision!  And be at peace with it.

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      Sherron
      Participant

      For me, a baby is a gift from God…It's a part of you and your husband.  I think God will find a way for you to take care and provide for another child.  He nevers gives you more than you can handle.  Think carefully about your decision.  Best  Wishes on your decision!  And be at peace with it.

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