Monday, October 20, 2008

Just when things are going good...

Something else happens. Don't worry, I'm good, Peanut's good. But we got some bad news about my Dad last week...he's got prostate cancer.

We won't know anything more until we meet with the doctor next Monday to discuss everything. I know this kind of cancer is easily treatable, and I am encouraged by the fact they waited two weeks for the conference as opposed to rushing right away to meet with us. I take that to mean they’re not overly concerned at this point. So right now at least, I’m feeling pretty optimistic.

The worst part about this right now, is actually the fact that Dad has no health insurance. We’ve been unable to get him coverage for several years because he’s not old enough for Medicare but his “income” is too high to qualify for assistance, yet he can’t afford individual insurance on his own. He is one of the many uninsured in America that "slip through the cracks."

I honestly don’t know what he's going to do and I have no idea how much it’s going to cost. We really have to wait and see what kind of treatment they're recommending before we can have any idea what to expect cost-wise. And of course, it would be pointless to get him health insurance now, because any individual policy he purchased would give him a pre-existing condition exclusion for any treatment related to the cancer.

I haven't updated about my dad much lately, because he's been doing really great and I didn't want to jinx things. But back in June, he quit drinking. He even completed an intensive outpatient rehab program and has been going to weekly AA meetings. He even has a sponsor. Mostly, he chose to quit as a reaction to his DUI in hopes that his sentencing would be lighter (we'll find out in Nov), but as the program progressed, he really seemed to have a change of heart and came to a real understanding about what he's been doing.

The biggest difference I've noticed this time is that he no longer acts like he doesn't have a problem. In the past, he's never admitted that he's an alcoholic, never said the words aloud. This time, he has. Now, he talks about not drinking as something he has to do for the rest of his life. It's been really good for him, mentally as well as physically. He seems happier, is more pleasant to be around and he just looks a million times healthier and heartier than he used to. I am so, so proud of him for recognizing his problem and making such a huge change in his life.

It's such a shame that he's made this wonderful change in his life, only to get sick now. I am keeping my fingers crossed that we'll be able to get him well quickly and without breaking the bank. I really want him to be around for a lot longer, I want him to be a part of Peanut's life, I want him to continue being a part of my life.

As always, I'll take any good karma you want to send our way and I'll keep you posted.