Hello Everyone - I was reading in my cancer sites (two sites I frequently go into where I can commiserate and vent to a cohort group that is going and has gone through what I have) and reading some of the trials that others are going through made me feel both thankful I was not going through what they are and guilty to feel thankful at the same time. I'm not entirely sure I know what that means. Why should I feel guilty I do not have the same trials? I'm not sure why. Perhaps because it brings this disease and possible outcomes to reality and I fear that - perhaps the guilt is only a manifestation of the fear.
I know I peruse the forum threads and when someone who has been in remission or has had clean scans over a few years suddenly develops another cancer or a metastases somewhere else, I actually panic. When does this fear of recurrence end? Perhaps it never does. Perhaps the key is to learn to 'live' with the possibility of recurrence or metastases or even a new cancer. While I know that sounds maybe a bit defeatist in the sense I'm not thinking "I'm Cured!!!" lets move on - it is something I think I will live with for a while longer and perhaps for the rest of my life. Once you have been hit with the cancer lightening bolt, you tend to be afraid to go outside for fear you will get hit again. Normal fear. It's when the fear becomes irrational that I will need to check myself at the door and re-evaluate my thinking. So far my fear is normal. I intend to keep it that way. I intend to do everything I can to be healthy. What happens after that, happens.
Today is the day before the fourth of July. This year went by so quickly. Next month on the 18th will be my one year anniversary since treatment. One year. All the burns and itching and pain and illness of treatment are a faded memory now (although when I read of others going through it, the memory creeps back quickly). I will be lighting a sparkler tomorrow -- I do that every year -- to commemorate this holiday. Even last year, I went on the deck in my extra large boxer shorts (worn to keep fabric away from the burns and sore skin from radiation) and lit a sparkler and watched as neighbors set off their own fireworks.
Happy Fourth Everyone. I'm thrilled that I'm here to celebrate another one. Hugs and Love, Be well, Marilyne