Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My mom and her breast cancer

Jane Howe Kiel (mother) and Paul Kiel (son) - Thanksgiving 1972 ( not realizing it was her last picture. )

At around 4 a.m. the morning of October 25, 1973, my maternal grandmother woke me up to inform me that my mother had passed around 12:30 a.m. October 25, 1973.

I was trying to get awake from lack of sleep the past 2 weeks since I got home from Gallaudet College. I was at her bedside days and nights. I was hoping for miracle, but my family doctor said that there was no hope. It was advanced cancer as a result of a breast cancer.

Trying to snap out of sleep, I told my grandmother, Ruth and my younger brother, Robert to hurry up and get in the car. Once everyone was in the car, I put the car in reverse and pulled out of the driveway. I made a beeline for the hospital.

I rushed into the hospital and jumped into the elevator going up to the 5th floor... (more in my book, To Be Deaf or Not To Be Deaf...)

**October 25, 2011 - now 38 years later - I am pleased with today's results of women group fighting for breast cancer awareness. Back in 1973 - it was not a reality and it was a "hush" "hush" -- something like in dark ages. The family doctor was male and his attitude sucked.

Everytime I observe the breast cancer awareness program (25 years) and Susan G Komen Race for the Cure (28 years), it reminds me how difficult and emotional life was with my mother.

Yes, it was very difficult watching her die of cancer. it all started back in October of 1970. We were excited about planning a trip to Houston, Texas to see family for Thanksgiving.

I got home from high school football game and was heading to my room. My mother was taking bath and she used her hand to hit the bathtub to make noises to get my attention.

"Jay", Jane yelled, " get over here please!".

I turned around and asked her what was wrong and I saw her look on her face. She asked me to feel that lump on her breast and she knew I recently took Health course at school where we recently discussed the very same subject. Feeling for lumps on body...she asked me to do it and I felt it. Yes, there was a lump.

The next 3 years was hell! (more in the book)...

My mother was special and my best friend. I miss her!

Mom, thank you for being with me with the time we had!