So much has happened in the six days since I posted I was about to go over to Holland again. Mum was referred to another hospital where we went last Wednesday, and within three days they had a diagnosis. She probably has a tumor in her pancreas. It's not certain it's malignant but in their experience it generally is. At the moment it looks like it's the only tumor and there are no secondaries, but only a biopsy will prove that for certain.
She now has to wait for an appointment for an operation, which will take place within the next two to three weeks. This is quite a major operation as they have to re-route gall bladder, pancreas, stomach exit etc. She'll be in hospital for 7 to 10 days, barring complications.
She was very down-to-earth about it herself, I think probably relieved that she finally knows why she's been feeling so unwell and that they can do something about it. I had more trouble coping, it was quite a shock even though my dad (who's a GP) had been telling me from the start that it could be serious.
At the moment I'm back in Britain, but only for a few days. I'm taking I. and N. over on Wednesday evening, mum's got a ward visit on Thursday which we'll do together, dad's taken the day off to look after I. and N. On Saturday St Nicholas arrives in Holland which I had planned to go and see with them anyway, so in a way that worked out well. We'll be back again on Sunday morning and then it's a matter of waiting to hear when she's got to come in for the operation.
Having said all that, last week we made so many plans and it all changed on a daily basis, so I wouldn't be surprised if these plans go different as well!
I'm feeling shattered, emotional, angry and powerless. She's my mum and I don't want to lose her just yet. I found it hard to leave her when I left on Saturday evening, but I've got a life here too, the kids and a job to take care off. I. was in floods of tears last night, I think it's mostly because she doesn't know when I'll have to go back again and then when I'll be back again - she hates insecurity and does fine as long as she knows what's happening. We had a long chat and she calmed down and seemed fine this morning, but it's another thing on top of everything else to cope with (read: worry about!).
Ideally I'd like to crawl under a duvet and sleep for a day, but it doesn't look like that'll be possible at the moment!
At least with all the hospital visits/waiting I'm getting a bit of knitting done - keeping my hands occupied seems to take my mind off things.