Monday, August 12, 2013

Tobacco, It stops with Him.

I knew I would be a terrible blogger from the start! This is a prime example! No entries for several weeks!
 My family life has been extremely busy the past 2 months. My dad was diagnosed with Squamous Cell Carcinoma last month. To put it in layman’s terms, it is a type of skin cancer. In his situation, it is Cancer of the tongue. He has used smokeless tobacco since he was a teenager. He is scheduled to have a partial tongue removal next Thursday, followed by Chemotherapy and Radiation. They will be removing 2/3 of his tongue and also reconstruction of the tongue. The section of the tongue that is being reconstructed will not have any muscle; therefore we have been told his speech will be impaired. He is currently in a lot of pain, but since the surgery will be a total of 18 hours, they have had him wait two weeks before they can have two doctors available to do such an extensive surgery. He currently has a feeding tube so that he can receive nutrition, water and medication. He may or may not be able to have it removed after the surgery. The doctor asked him if he could have the ability to talk or eat, which would he choose, and he said he would rather EAT. I don’t’ blame him. He has lost 40lbs in the past two months. There is a lot of technology these days to help us communicate with each other. I am very thankful that he has found a great team of doctors in OKC to help him along this journey. One day at a time…is all we can really do!
 While the thought of him not being able to have his full speaking ability again is heartbreaking, I am very thankful he will have LIFE. If you know someone who uses smokeless tobacco, please ask them to stop. It’s as simple as that. The Skoal ring on the back of your jeans is NOT cool.

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