Saturday, August 28, 2010


So, that is my situation in August, 2010. (Those who missed the beginning of the story, please read the previous post first.) But Mom's operation and my work were not all the challenges I have to face. Here's my dad -- who shouldn't be, and cannot be forgotten.

Let me tell you something. He suffered from hypochondriasis from his late 30s to early 60s. By the time he was 45 years old, his name was well-known at all the hospitals in the eastern part of the prefecture (well, we only have a handful of hospitals there anyway), because he always insisted that there was something wrong with him and the doctors had to refer him back and forth among their hospitals. Finally he did get sick and had an operation, and after recovering from it, his health complaints have subsided. Well, at least, it looked that way, until this summer.

But soon after mom started seeing the doctor, dad started complaining about his health. He says that his legs are mildly paralyzed and he has trouble walking. A couple of weeks before mom got her worst diagnosis, dad started his pilgrimage to hospitals, with the doctor always saying, "Well, there seems to be nothing wrong..." Then mom's diagnosis seems to have pushed him into full-blown hypochondriasis.

to be cont'd...
posted by obachan, 8/28/2010 03:01:00 PM | link | 4 comments |

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Finally! The worst part is over. Well, maybe I shouldn't say that because it was not really the "worst" -- I did enjoy some of the new experiences after all -- and also, things can get worse from now on.

Anyway, where should I start? Mom's operation, maybe.
As I posted on my foodblog, mom had been complaining about her foot problem for years, and she finally went to see the doctor several months ago. After visiting 2 different hospitals without getting a clear diagnosis, at the 3rd hospital (University hospital), the doctor found two masses that looked like tumor. After they examined one of them, she was told that they were benign. But the doctor checked out the other one just to make sure, and it was found malignant. Also in her MRI (I guess?) there was a spot in her lung that could have been another tumor metastasized from the one in her foot.

Luckily, PET scan found out that the one in her lung was not malignant. However, to minimize the risk of metastasis, she agreed to have her left foot cut off. That was the end of July.

She was obviously shocked, and I felt devastated. Of course I felt terrible for her, but I have to admit that I was more worried about how it would affect me -- my work, especially.

As I had written before, since May 2010, I have been working for a promotion committee that is trying to make our hometown a geopark. The place was approved as a domestic geopark a few years ago, but the attempt to join the global network of geoparks has not been successful, and this year we are going to give it our best shot. Since the beginning of this year, the committee has been working harder than ever, attending meetings after meetings, improving tourism-related facilities and running loads of events to promote our geopark and educate the public.

And this August was full of important events, including an on-site evaluation by Japanese domestic geopark committee for the endorsement to apply for a membership of the global network. It has been the dream of many local people here, so it is like "We can't fail this time!" because we already failed twice before.

... to be cont'd
posted by obachan, 8/26/2010 11:45:00 AM | link | 8 comments |