Just like alcoholism, cancer may very well be a family disease. I’ve talked about this before, but sometimes certain topics bear repeating. Scott was angry when I was diagnosed with a head and neck cancer. He did not want to go to oncology or radiology appointments with me. The radiation techs at the hospital wanted him to come in and see my brand new radiation mask. I believe his words were, “Are you people crazy?” He absolutely did not want to see the mesh mask that I would need to wear in order to receive radiation in my mouth, but it’s certainly not because he doesn’t care.
Just the opposite….
He has a difficult time with his emotions. I know this is not uncommon. Human beings handle unpleasant news in a multitude of ways and he is no different. Some of us don’t talk about it and prefer to hide in the dark of night and the light of day – Perhaps behind a smile. What we are dealing with may be too difficult to talk about or we don’t want to burden anyone.
Truth be told….
I buried my feelings so deep inside that no one would ever be able to find them. When I started writing, it never occurred to me that these feelings would come up and out. They would begin bubbling over into quite a mess and sometimes when the volcano erupts, it releases months or even years of torment. As I initially began to write, I was ill prepared for any of this. I do, however, believe that this was a necessary step along the way. Cathartic to say the least and it has certainly given me the most.
Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock….
Make that list and check it twice. I was told to make the best use of my time for anything and everything I believed to be important. What the doctor failed to remind me of was that most of these days would be spent in bed. I was an 80 pound stick, with none of the usual rosy glow left on my cheeks.
A ghost of my former self? Maybe, but as the old saying goes – Time Takes Time….
I read many posts in my head and neck cancer group about some rather unpleasant topics. “My wife left me”, or “I feel so tired and unattractive”. Most of these declarations have a tenancy to make my eyes well with tears. There are days when I may need a break from this reality, but then I read “My scan was clear”, “I swallowed my first piece of solid food”, or “I get fitted for my new teeth”. Never in a million years did I ever dream that a statement about new teeth would make my day, but it’s true.
Sometimes in life we are being thrown curveballs. It’s called Life on Life’s Terms. This was certainly a bitter pill for me to swallow. I wanted no parts of this, but it does not mean that I should throw my hands in the air and say I can’t. I can do anything I set my mind to doing. It’s been a process for me, but my goal is to help others with some of the lessons I’ve learned over these years.
When my friends tell me that their jaw hurts or their tongue is sore and they can’t sleep, I can relay some of the things that have helped me and if I have not been through what they have, I can offer my prayers or maybe an ear to bend. This is a gift I’m only happy to return to anyone in need. These are the blessings I’ve received and for that I will leave you with my all-time favorite saying – I am ever Grateful….
With Love, K xo
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How beautiful to read the courageous words of one of God’s warriors. I have survived to be a senior citizen after decades of battling alcoholism. My poor children. My son touched me recently by sending a text to me. “God saves His very biggest battles for His strongest warriors”. Giving a voice of faith and outreach to everyone is a calling, thank you Kelly.