An older woman handing a younger one a bag of meals

My Mom, She's Still Keeping Me Fed

Lung cancer is hard. It is very important to have people in your corner to support you and help with various tasks. My people are my family: my twin, mom, dad, and husband. My nieces and nephews are also around, so I can be the best auntie for them.

Support through food

Each person offers something unique. My mom keeps me fed. She does other things, but the main thing she is good at is ensuring that I eat and stay hydrated.

Lung cancer and my lost appetite

In 2016, I participated in a clinical trial in Boston. I had a lot of downtime because I was not working. I remember one day, in particular, my mom and I drove north and landed at Dave and Busters. We played games and had lunch. I did not have a very good appetite then, but I ordered tater-tot nachos. The little bit that I did eat was delicious!

Hello appetite, my old friend!

My mom would make me breakfast when we weren't looking for things to do. I ate a lot of pancakes, baked potatoes, and fried eggs. When going through treatment, eating what tastes best is important. I lost a lot of weight in this trial, and I was encouraged to eat all the butter and sour cream I wanted.

Since that time, I have switched treatments a few times. In 2019, I was considered to have no evidence of disease! I was living life again like I was without lung cancer. I was going to work full time, and each night I decided what to eat for dinner with my husband.

And then, things changed

In mid-2022, I ended up needing surgery, and there were complications. I ended up being in the hospital for six nights. This hospital stay threw me and my body for a loop.

No-fat, no fun

I developed a chyle leak and was put on a no-fat diet. I was released from the hospital with a chest tube and a restricted diet. My mom came to my house each day until the tube was removed and made sure that I ate properly. A no-fat diet was not sustainable, but I did my best. And it worked! The tube was removed a few days later, and my doctors instructed me to remain on the no-fat diet for two more weeks.

...But my mom still made sure I ate!

My mom cooked chicken in the instant pot, sautéed spinach, made Jell-O, and steamed veggies. I continued to work while I had the chest tube in, so my mom stayed with me during the day until my husband got home from work. Having my mom around to help feed me, clean, and do some of the tasks I have no energy for is priceless.

My endless gratitude for her and my support system

If you are newly diagnosed, I hope you have a care team like me. It has made things a lot easier to deal with. Now, I just need someone to call the insurance company and pharmacy for me!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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