We were supposed to fly out to Bali tonight (thank you so much for all of your jet-lag tips and well wishes on Friday’s post!). We’re going to postpone our trip, and I have to explain- it would be weird at this point not to. I haven’t written about what’s been going on in our family life because it feels so personal, and we’re right in the middle of it, but I think we need your support and I’m certain many of you have gone through similar experiences. Last year around this time Lou’s father was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. At the end of summer he had surgery and we were all hopeful that it would help keep the cancer at bay. Unfortunately at the end of January we found out that it had come back and any further care would be palliative. Palliative. Hospice. Metastasize. There’s a whole new language to be learned when cancer comes into your life, it’s an education I wish for no one.
Pancreatic cancer is aggressive and one of the worst, from what we’ve been told. We’ve been going back and forth to Florida since his diagnosis every chance we get- which we feel so fortunate to have been able to do quite a lot. Our plan had been to move Lou’s dad in with us after our Bali trip, but some test results over the weekend made it obvious that we would be unwise to delay his trip, so tomorrow Lou will be flying back to Florida to get him. He’ll be spending the rest of his days, however many they may be, with us here in Palm Springs. We’re looking forward to caring for him and loving him through the rest of his life. I feel like a robot typing this, I’m not ready to really write about what it all means and how it all feels. For now the facts are all I can offer up. But someday I hope to write about this experience- the beautiful, the messy, the real. In the meantime, please keep us in your thoughts and prayers. I love you, and thank you. xx- Sarah
sending lots and lots of love and hugs..I hope you can feel them xo
I can I can! Thank you Court!!
We may not know each other, but please know my prayers are with you and your family. Sending love and strength your way from across the miles….
Thank you so much Rose!
this post gave me the goosebumps. sending loving thoughts your way. you are in my thoughts <3
Thank you Caitlin, I appreciate it so much! xx
I’ve been reading your blog for a long time without commenting but felt I couldn’t not after this post. My family have been through a similar thing with my auntie and her diagnosis and eventual passing at the beginning of the year. My thoughts are with you at this difficult time, I hope that your time left together as a family is filled with love and peace. All the best xxx
Thank you so much Jennifer! I’m so sorry to read about your Aunt and your loss. Big hugs to you! xx
My sincerest thoughts with you and your family. May his days be fulled with lots of love and bright Palm Spring sunshine.
Thank you Judy! That is our hope too!
Thinking of you, as always. XOXO
Thank you so much Jacquelyn! I’ve been sending prayers out to the universe for your Grandmother as well! xx
We are all thinking of you!
Thank you Elizabeth! xx
Very best wishes to you and your family, Sarah!
Thank you so much Meg!
A dignified, peaceful death through hospice is one of the most treasured gifts we were able to give my dad when he passed away from cancer. It was so so hard–many people tell you WRONGLY that palliative care is giving up, while in reality, it is the most caring and supportive choice you can make. Praying for your strength, resilience, and peace.
Abbie I’m so sorry to read about your Dad. And thank you for sharing, for offering your story to comfort us in our time! Thank you so, so much for all of this. Sending my thoughts and prayers to your family as well! xx
Your story is all too familiar to me. My husband and I moved from CA to RI to be with his stepfather toward the end of his battle. I wish you both peace and strength. xo
Oh Erin, I’m so sorry to read that, my heart goes out to you. But what a gift to his stepfather to have you there with him! Thank you so much for the kind words. xx
life is so hard. many, many prayers sent to you right now in this difficult time.
thinking of your family even though i don’t know you, and hoping for peace and acceptance to wash over you all. let us know how we can help you.
Oh Madeline thank you so much! Reading these notes, from you and others, has been such a gift to us. We feel so comforted by our community, so loved and cared for. It’s more than we could ever ask for. Thank you.
So so sorry to hear this news. Sending lots of love and thoughts to you and your husband in this difficult time.
Thank you Brianne! xx
Your post brought me down memory lane. You will benefit from this loving experience more than you can imagine. Enjoy and embrace this precious time.
Thank you! Im so comforted reading that from someone who has been in our position. We feel so blessed to have this time with him. Thank you.xx
Sending you and your family lots of love, hugs for when you need them, and strength for when you have none of your own left. You will be in my prayers . Xxx
Thank you so much for the kind words Hazel, this is such a sweet message for us! Thank you, from the bottom of my heart! xx
Coming out of from a similar situation with my father in law and can undoubtedly relate to much of what you are feeling as a daughter in law and as a partner to Lou. Love, prayers and peace from one of your long time readers Sarah.
oh Erin, thank you! And I’m so sorry to hear about your father in law. My heart is with you. Wishing you love and comfort and peace…. xx
Praying for you and your entire family
Thank you Candace! xx
So brave to share something so personal. Sending positive thoughts, strength, prayers, and hugs to everyone. You have loyal followers that will be (virtually) with you all the way. xo
Thank you so much Liz, you and everyone else are offering up so much comfort for us right now! We know we’re not alone in this. Thank you! xx
So sorry to hear this sad, sad, news. I wish for you all much stregth, and will definitely pray for you.
Thank you Tania, so much! xx
I know we don’t know one another, but I am sending you lots of love and support and positive energy. He is very lucky to have the two of you to care for him and share your home and hearts with him.
Oh Meghan, thank you! We feel lucky to be able to do it, and that he wants to spend this time with us. Thank you so much for the kind words! xx
its a pity, i just found this blog a while ago :'( i enjoyed this blog a lot! could you plseae tell us your email?? good luck with whatever you’re doing now and best of luck!!
I can only imagine how difficult this is for all of you. Though it is hard I hope that this time you will have together is special. I’m certain it will be. I have you in my prayers.
Thank you Jane, so much! I know it’s going to be such a mix of everything, beautiful and hard and all that’s between. Thank you for being with us through this! xx
Thinking of You, Lou, & the rest of your family. Thank you for sharing and being so honest & real, Sarah! I’ve been reading your blog for a few years now and have loved seeing how this crazy journey of life has unfolded for you. Thanks for letting us readers in to be apart of it. I know it’s not always an easy thing to do.
Having lost my mom to cancer when I was 20, I know how crazy it can be to watched a loved one suffer, shrivel up and just fade right before your eyes. It doesn’t matter how old or young you are, or what kind of relationship you have with your mom or dad. It ALWAYS sucks to lose a parent. I feel for you and Lou and will be thinking and praying for you lots!
All the best, always
Oh Tori, thank you for writing. I’m so sorry about your Mom, that is just devastating. My heart goes out to you. Thank you so much for the kind words, for reading along, for being so sweet to me. It means so much to me, I have no words. Thank you thank you thank you! xx
Oh my goodness this is such a hard thing to go through Sarah, I’m so sorry to hear that and wish only the very best to you guys at this difficult time. Your Father-in-law is very lucky to have you both care for him for the rest of his time. Lots of hugs and strength to you all! X
Thank you so much Maria Lee, thank you thank you! We feel so lucky to have him (and all of you!). xx
oh my thoughts are with you and your family. what a hard process. but i am so glad you are able to care for him and be with him now. sending warm energy to you
Thank you so much Kelsey, I am so grateful for the kind words! xx
You all are in mine and my husband’s prayers and thoughts. I send you lots of love and comfort during this difficult time. <3 Chas
Thank you Chas, it means so much to us! xx
Sending thoughts and prayers your way, Sarah. No one should have to endure this sort of experience and I wish you the very best.
Than you Liz, so much! xx
I’m sorry to hear about your father in law! Illness and death can be all consuming. And there is no way to prepare yourself for what you will experience. I can only speak from my own experience and caring for my grandfather but it will be terrible and great at the same time. I don’t know how else to explain it… the moments of helplessness and uncertainty are terrible yet great because this is someone you love and what a better way to say I love you then to care for someone in their time of need. Thinking of you!
Sara what a beautiful message for us, thank you so, SO much! I’m so sorry to read about your Grandfather, for your loss. But thank you so much for your words and thoughts, so sweet of you to write! I love your perspective and will carry it with me! xx
My thoughts & prayers are with you & your husband. A co-worker of mine has just dealt with the death of her father from pancreatic cancer yesterday, actually. It’s all very sad & heartbreaking. May you find strength & peace as you care for your father-in-law. Hugs.
Thank you Rachel! Strength and peace, thank you so much! xx
Hi there. I just recently started following your blog- as in today-recent. This is the second post that came across my feed that I have read since joining Bloglovin’, and I would just wish to extend my prayers to you and yours. I had an aunt who had lung cancer when I was a junior in high school. After multiple doctor’s visits and trips to Houston (on the opposite side of Texas from our town) within a year she had beaten the cancer through chemotherapy. And then within only two weeks of a cancer-free life, she developed bronchitis while in the local hospital and passed away two days later. . . That was over five years ago. My family still recieves grievences from friends and other loved one, even the community that had known my aunt. What I was hoping to get across to you through my story is that even the people you don’t know exist, the people who only just once some time ago knew this man, are all sending on their wishes and prayers to you all. Hope comes in small packages, and I pray that none of you ever lose your hope or your faith. Things will happen as they are meant to. Yet no one deserves to suffer the pain of any form of cancer, all you can do is love him to your fullest, as you stated. I’m sure he needs it.
Thank you Christine! I’m so sorry to hear about your Aunt, I will keep you and your family in my prayers. Thank you so much for the great message, I love that “hope comes in small packages”. What a beautiful message for us! Thank you so much Christine!! xx
Thank you Abby! Love right back at you! xx
All my thoughts go your way from the other side of the planet to your stepfather, you and your family. Caring for my dad who’s got cancer, I know how difficult it can be. Both of you are so brave for doing it and I can promise you that it will stretch you in ways you can’t imagine, beautiful ways, loving ways.
Oh Aurelie, I’m so sorry to read about your Dad! We will be thinking of you and sending prayers your way as well. I love what you wrote, that it will stretch us in ways we can’t imagine, beautiful, loving ways. That is the sweetest, thank you so much! xx
thinking of you and your family… I don’t know you personally but I really hope you can feel the love xx
thinking of you and your family… I don’t know you personally but am sending you loads of love… xx
Thank you Kara!! xx
What an amazing gift to be able to surround Lou’s Dad with comfort and serenity at your beautiful home versus an unfamiliar hospital or hospice. You learn so much of yourself and your capacity to love during a time like this. Your priorities realign with ease, which it sounds like you’ve already felt. My memory of caring for my Dad on his last night before he lost his cancer battle at home is one I will treasure forever. I am sending strength your way and prayers to Lou and his Dad. Thank you for reminding me to love fiercely.
Thank you Katy! Such wise words and an incredible comfort to us! I’m so sorry to read about your Dad, he was incredibly lucky to have you to spend his days with. Thank you so much for the note, it means the world to us. Love fiercely. Best reminder! xx
Sending you boat loads of love, hugs and prayers and thank you for sharing something so personal. xo
Thank you Jessica! Sending boat loads of love and hugs back!
Oh Sarah, even if you’re writing the bare facts, you do not seem like a robot at all. Even in relaying these simple points, we can all feel the complex emotions that accompany them. I know one day in the (hopefully distant) future, I will be in a similar situation and having felt that early breath of horror, I can only imagine what these days are for you. I hope there is some glimmer of sunshine in these last days and that you find some kind of comfort in knowing that you’re making the best of them xxx
Thank you so much Lucy! I know these days will be mixed with so many emotions- but we will do our best to hang onto the best ones and work our way through the hard ones. Thank you so much for the kind words. xx
the way you wrote about this was so incredibly kind – i could feel it all the way up here in new york. sending all the warm hugs and best wishes your way. xoxo, hannah (sayyestostorytelling.blogspot.com)
Thank you so much Hannah! I hope to share more down the road when I’m able. Stay cozy in NY! xx
Thinking of you & Lou Sarah. It’s a beautiful thing you are doing x
Thank you Claire! xx
You don’t know me but know I am sending you the biggest warmest hug in the entire world. Generating vibes of love and peace to your entire family.
Thank you Heather!! A big warm hug is perfect, thank you!
A few months ago, my grandfather passed away. He did not have cancer, he was simply an old man with an old heart. He spent a few weeks in a hospital, nearly died there, but then slowly recovered. All that he wanted was to leave this place and go back to his home, that he had built himself. He died there, during a night, with my grandmother by his side, and I am relieved he could die in his house and not alone in the hospital. What you’re going to experience will be sad and hard, but also beautiful. You wille be able to share some precious time with Lou’s father and all of you will treasure this time. I’m sending you all my thoughts, stay strong.
Thank you so much Nina. What a beautiful story about your Grandfather. Life, death and everything in between can be so painfully beautiful. Thank you for sharing and the kind words! xx
sending lots of love, strength and positive energy to you all. xx
Thank you Amy! Sending it right back to you too! xx
I’m not much of a commenter but I had to write and send you love. I’m thinking of you and your family.
Thank you Nadya, it means so much to us! xx
my warmest thoughts are with you and I will pray for peace and courage when you least expect it. It’s amazing how much we can take on by finding our courage when our journey takes us down these paths. XO
Thank you Mariah! I know we will all be forever changed, so much for the better, for going through this together. Thank you for keeping us in your thoughts and the sweet note. Peace and courage for all, in abundance please! xx
Oh goodness….I’m so sorry to hear this news. Sending prayers and love to your family.
Thank you so much Lizzy, much appreciated. We feel so loved and cared for by our community right now, it’s incredible. xx
Love and light Sarah…and a BIG HUG! xo
Thank you Jennifer!!
My Father was diagnosed last Monday. It is already in the 3rd stage, and I will be flying to Toronto pending news from his Dr. tomorrow…I’m so incredibly happy that Lou’s Dad will be with you…celebrate everyday, and know that a perfect stranger from miles away is in the same “place”.
I will pray for Lou’s Dad – please pray for mine.
Oh Natasha, I’m so terribly sorry to hear about your Dad! My heart goes out to you. We will keep you and yours in our thoughts and prayers as well! I wish I could offer something more, but please know our hearts are with you. xx
Sending love, peace and comfort to you all…
Thank you Joanna, hugely appreciated. Love, peace and comfort- what perfect wishes for us right now!! Thank you thank you. xx
I am so sorry that you are going through this. My grandfather suffered from pancreatic cancer, and it is truly the worst. My positive thoughts to you and your family.
Thank you Shannon, and I’m so so sorry to hear about your grandfather. It’s such a common form of cancer and so devastating to most who get it. Sending prayers your way as well! xx
Sending love and strength to you both at this difficult time. I know you will each be a rock for the other over the coming weeks and months. I don’t know you but the solidity of your relationship radiates through these pages.
I listened to a podcast of This American Life entitled ‘Death & Taxes’. Though I cried all the way through, I found it beautiful and profound and I wonder if it might help you. Perhaps now or perhaps in the future.
BIG hugs xxx
Hi Steph! I listened to that podcast a week and a half ago- it slayed me! So beautiful and sad and hopeful, all at once. I too cried through the whole thing. Thank you so much for the kind words. Lou and I are so lucky to have a really amazing bond and I’m so happy that it comes across, and hope more than anything that inspires others! Thank you again Steph!! xx
it’s both beautiful and inspiring to see how you are embracing the care of lou’s dad. sending good vibrations your way.
Thank you Jamie! We’re determined to fill as many of his days up as he has left with all of the love that we have. I think it’s a beautiful way to live. xx
I can’t imagine. This community is here for you. Sending love and prayers. Also, what y’all are doing is the greatest thing you could do.
Thank you Jessica for the sweet words! We feel the love and support from our community (online and off) and it’s a beautiful thing! xx
sending my loving thoughts your way, even though we may not know each other. you are two of the most beautiful people for caring for him and sharing your home with him. all the best.
Thank you Kelly! We feel so fortunate to be able to, and so fortunate that he chooses to spend his final days with us too. Thank you for the kind words and thoughts! xx
I totally understand, Sarah. I’m going through something similar with my second mom. She has a rare form of back cancer and 24-hour hospice care has been put in place to help with her pain as no chemo or surgeries can be done. However, I wouldn’t be a friendly stranger if I didn’t tell you about Sanoviv Medical Institute. It’s really worth looking into if you already haven’t. Prayers are coming your way! <3
Huong I’m so sorry to hear about your mom! Thank you for the referral, I will look into the Sanoviv Medical Institute right away! Will be keeping you and your mom in my prayers as well. xx
We are here for you, all of us. Cancer is a son of a bitch anyway you look at it, I think we’ve all been in its grips whether it be directly or indirectly. I know loss, and that robotic feeling you describe. You are wonderful to offer your love and support to someone, you and Lou really are wonderful to help his dad in this way.
We are here for you xx
Thank you Niec! And it’s so true, almost everyone has dealt with it in some capacity. Thank you so much for the kind words and support!! xx
Sarah, I have a lot going on tonight. I havent read the other comments, although Im certain they are all supportive and heartfelt. We cant live in todays world without being impacted by cancer in some way or fashion. What I want to tell you is I admire your strength and courage, not only involving embracing the idea of caring for your father-in-law, but to share what you were able to with us today. There are so many blogs out there, and from what I have found….few have the courage to be real. Truth is, its not always sunshine and roses for any of us. Sometimes we have to be brave and strong enough to stand in the shadows and not freak out from it all. Being a human being is a tremendous task for us all, but, if trauma and stress doesnt harden us…we always have loved ones to lean on. Im thankful you have Lou and Lou’s father has both of you. Sometimes the only thing to grab hold of is love.. Thank you for sharing. It just reaffirms for me what Ive sensed about you, which is you have a big heart. Love heals all wounds. My prayers go out to all of you, and may you have the courage one day to share it as you desire. Typically, if we follow what our gut tells us to do, we are fulfilling our destiny. But I believe that everything, even the yucky things are part of the divine plan. One day…this will all make sense, perfect sense and we can roll around in how amazingly perfect everything was and will always be. Hang in there!!!
Thank you for the lovely not and kind words Briana! I agree with you 100%, this is part of our path and we’re walking on it knowing that it’s for a reason and we’re embracing it the best we can. Thank you so much for the reminder though, and all that you wrote, it means so much to us! xx
It is so little that you can do in this difficult time, but every little thing can mean so much… Sending you all the strength and support.. xx
Thank you Almu! That is such a nice reminder, and so very true! <3
My heart breaks for you and your husband, you both are in my prayers. I wish peace and comfort for the rest of his life.
Thank you sweet Myrna! Means so much to us! xx
sarah, i obviously don’t know you, but it is so humbling that you are brave enough and you love him so much to take that journey. i wish you all the strength and courage you need and i am thinking of you. xo maria
Thank you so much Maria! I don’t feel very brave but we do have a tremendous amount of love to give, so that will help us through! xx
SO so sorry that you and Lou are having to go through this. I can’t even imagine… My thoughts and prayers are with you both. Hoping his dad feels more love than pain from here on… xx
Thank you SO much Lauren! We so appreciate the kind thoughts and prayers!
oh my lovely, you can do this. When your heart feels like it can’t possibly cope with anything more, just watch it grow and fill with strength, patience, empathy and love. It will, I just know it. And what a privilege to be in a position you can give this lovely man the most perfect end days. Love and strength to you all
Wendy, thank you so much! This was so beautifully and perfectly said. It made me weep, in the best way. Thank you so much. I really hope we can give him the “most perfect end of days”, more than anything. Thank you. xx
Sarah, I’m thinking of you, because I know exactly what you’re going through right now. Finding out nothing there is anything you can do in January. Palliative care. I don’t know if I’m getting on that plane in 48 hours or 2 weeks, but it’s going to happen this month. So this is a virtual hug from me.
Oh Rachel I’m so sorry you’re going through the same. My prayers are with you! Sending love. xx
God is in control girl, it may not seem that way but he is.
Yes, thank you for the reminder! It’s all out of our hands, we just have to love our way through it! xx
I was about yo make a post about that a few weeks ago because I’m going through a similar thing right now… But then I finally didn’t find the courage within me to do because it’s so personal, I was afraid maybe to reveal really… Anyway, my mum has a cancer, a breast cancer. Now unfortunately she also has tumors in many other parts like brain. The worst thing…
So yes, I also learned the words metastasize and many other words I wish I never would have learned. But this is life… The only thing you can do in those moments is being here, like you do, for the one who is sick. To give him your time, love, presence, prayers. Only those things really matter.
I send you love and strength to face this hard time…
Oh, I’m so so sorry to read that Nadia! I hope you share, it has brought me so much comfort having all of this support and all of the sweet reminders in this thread of comments are priceless! I know I’ll read them over and over again. My heart is with you as you walk down this road with your mom. She is so fortunate to have you. Sending you the love and strength right back! xx <3
Sending love to you during this time x
Thank you Cols!! <3
Sending you and Lou the biggest virtual hug possible plus lots of positive thoughts and prayers. xoxo
Thank you so much Brittany! xx
Sending lots of love and prayers and peace from London! x (another) Sarah
Thank you Sarah from London, so much! xx
Thinking of you and your family – say everything you need to say, leave no words at bay. Sending so many thought and best wishes across the globe x
Thank you Rachael for that reminder, and you kind words! xx
Sending you and your family a lot of love, the quote with this post is beautiful.
Thank you Sophie! Yes, I love this quote too, it’s bringing me strength right now! xx
sending you and Lou much love. thinking of you all in this difficult time.
knowing you both, his days will be full of love with you all in Palm Springs
Thank you Kari dearest! Yes, we plan on loving him up real good.
Love, strength and prayers to you and your family, Sarah.
Thank you Madeleine, means so much to us! xx
Sarah and Lou, This post touched my heart. My husband and I went through a very similar experience with my beautiful mother. We were her primary caregivers as she battled a brain tumour, and passed away 2 years ago. Living with a caring for a parent who is dying is a mixed blessing….but one in which you will never regret. My thoughts are with you xx
Sincerest thoughts to you and your family. I have read The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch, and it brought many tears reading it. I don’t know if you are able to read it being you are right in the middle of what brave Randy Pausch went through, but he was able to see beyond his pancreatic cancer in order to keep his beautiful spirit through the lives if his young children as they grew up without him in their lives. Courage to you and your family.
Hi Sarah, I just saw this post but I wanted to send so much love and support your way! I lost my grandma last summer and it has by far been the most difficult thing I’ve ever had to go through (it still is), especially because I also took part in the care during her last days which was very hard to see her in pain. Just know that although it may be the most difficult thing ever, you can help make this a beautiful celebration of the life that he had the privilege of living and the new journey he’s about to move on to. One day you will look back on those memories and forever be changed by it. Sending lots of love, light and support your way! xo, monica
I’m a new reader and have been checking your site every evening to see what’s new…I’m so sorry to read this news, but I am glad that you felt comfortable enough to get it out there. Illness and caring for sick family members are part of life…my thoughts are with you and Lou and his father. Take care.
Sarah and Lou, your strength knows no bounds. Sending all three of you prayers and love. May your time together be filled with love, laughter and the happiest of memories.
Sending much love and peace to you and your family. What a blessing that you will share this time together. ox
Sarah – thank you for sharing such a beautiful, personal post. My thoughts are with you, your husband and the family. I know the ravages of pancreatic cancer well. I too, lost a family member, and now I’m fortunate to work with a non-profit that provides resources and hope to patients and families. Pancreatic Cancer Action Network http://www.pancan.org. Please let me know (or pancan!) if there is anything we can do for you guys.
Wow. We will be keeping your family in our thoughts
Postponing your trip is the best thing you could have done. You will live at peace and with a full heart knowing that you two spent all the time in the world that you possible could with Lou’s father.
I’m so sorry for your sad news. My grandfather received the same bad news a couple of months ago so I can relate to what you & Lou are going through. Many hugs to you guys during this difficult time.
Sarah …. words cannot express how sorry I am … you and your family and Lou’s family are in my thoughts. You are wonderful to make his last few months tolerable.
New to the blog but am already inspired by the beauty of the posts, both from the aesthetics and from the writing from the heart. Someone close to me passed away in January of this year from cancer and the experience of emotions- love, sadness, happiness, anger, understanding, etc, etc, as her health declined was actually life changing for me. I can tell you are good people and Lou’s dad is in great hands. Sending prayers.
I am so jealous! I want to go so badly, but it is not sneothimg I can afford. I have contacted over 100 companies, but it is to late for any of them to work it into their advertising budget. You girls have fun and think of me down here in Alabama.