Wednesday, March 15, 2006


After hearing a reader express they were worried about my anger expressed in a post, I've censored my words a bit, but I don't think that's a good idea.

I'm not quite using this as a journal, that could get very personal, and some things I don't want to share, but for others to understand what someone with cancer goes through may help me and others.

The whole gamut of emotions that surround a person who has to face the very real possiblility of their death is huge, and can't be taken lightly. The expression of emotions is critical. Holding them in is not healthy, and THAT is what can hurt me.
So, if I sometimes worry you, just know that my emotions are raw and real, and they need to be expressed. You may actually understand me better by reading about them.

A positive attitude is extremely important, but it doesn't just come with a Pollyanna smile and a wave of the hand. It's hard work. First you have to process the medical information, assess how it does or doesn't apply to you (everyone is different, and I am not a statistic), research your situation so you know that what the medical team is proposing is right for you (you could choose to go somewhere else, choose alternative methods, or do nothing), try to understand as much as you can, but not take in so much you can't handle it.

Imagine being hit with a sledge hammer. Literally. You'd fall down, perhaps pass out, recover consciousness, feel the pain, wait for the throbbing to stop, move your limbs to assess the damage, try to get up yourself...if you can't you call for help...
determine what medical attention you need (ER? doctor visit?), let the doctors assess the situation through tests, hear what they have to say, learn what they think you should do next, and then you have to weed through the information and make decisions that only YOU can make and strive for recovery. During the treatment you choose, you then deal with all the emotional factors involved with your accident, and the difficulties you have with the medical recovery, and try to keep a positive focus so that you can continue to work to move forward.

Friends don't often know what to do, and the emotional impact it has on them can paralyze them. I understand this very well, having lost family members to cancer, and having in some situations found myself paralyzed with fear and sadness.

I'm grateful for my friends and family, I know they love me, and have talked about how knowing that my illness has an emotional impact on them, and how that makes ME feel sad for them, and how personally I feel that and feel (unintentionally) responsible for them feeling bad.

Friday I begin the new drug, which will be administered only once every 3 weeks. It is a traditional chemo in that it kills errant cells, but also works on a protein on cells to diminish growth, so it works in a couple ways. I will visualize the energy of the cells diminishing, and in this way my thought can positively encourage the drug to work as it is intended.

I do believe that my thought can affect my body, yet I know I am mortal like everyone else, and I will just do the best I can, and that's all anyone can do. So, I'm using my anger as an emotion of strength. The Fight, not the Flight.


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