Saturday, October 25, 2008

Fear of the "C" Word




Yes....even I referred to it that way in the beginning. When I was first sent to a cancer center I was in HUGE denial. I was convinced it was just my thyroid and why not? That's what they kept telling me. I saw people in there sitting in the chairs waiting, and I told myself firmly and kind of smugly that I was NOT one of them. I was here by mistake. I swear to you. I thought these words.

They took me back to a room where I waited so long for that doctor. I try not to blame him considering I had no appointment but rather was kind of rushed over there. That's never a good thing. He told me it appeared to be a lymphoma but not to worry because this kind is very curable, very treatable. That's one thing about Hodgkin's. If you get it, the cure rate is pretty high. Some people though will be dumb enough to tell you that you are lucky because you got that one. Ok. I do feel glad it wasn't a terminal cancer or something that had really low cure rates but the fact is real that people can and do die from it and I felt awful. I couldn't breathe and without treatment wouldn't have lasted too much longer. I didn't feel too lucky at that point, not to mention I knew I was pregnant too.

For the first month or so I referred to it as the "C" word and though I was laid up in bed I didn't tell my older children what I had. I talked to a woman at the Cancer Center who told me I needed to tell my kids, don't be afraid of it. I realized something. It's true that fear of the word increases fear of the thing itself. I wasn't going to let cancer bully me and fear the word anymore. I lost an uncle to leukemia and an aunt to another kind of cancer all in a few years. My diagnosis was right about a year or so after my aunt died. This was very fresh in the mind of my family members. I was irritated because I was treated as though I were dying by some people or that I already had. That's a whole other blog post though. =/

My whole point here is that once I stopped fearing the "C" word and just realized it was something I had and something I was going to deal with I felt better. I wasn't so scared anymore. I can't take that fear away from others but I so wish I could. I am no more afraid of the "C" word itself than I am of any other word. The disease is a whole other story but I know I'm strong enough now. I can face it head on and that's enough for me.

3 comments:

Kats Big Fish said...

I love your story. I'm sure not all of them end this way as you mentioned but I love how you faced it and dealt with it. I would only hope I could do the same in the same situation.

All my best to you and Gabriella

Sandi said...

no you are right. A lot of people's stories don't end as well but I have actually met several women online who were pregnant with cancer and their babies are ok too. If you look around and get info it's amazing really. Not much is know about chemo during pregnancy but it's showing it's actually not as unsafe as what was once thought.

charlbert said...

you're an inspiration... i thank you for sharing this to all of us....

keep on inspiring others.... you are a good and pretty mom...

thanks....