Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Face-To-Face With cancer

Lately, I've been on a emotional roller coaster. Yesterday, I got off the coaster track and back on level ground.

Why? I don't know. I don't have all the answers. Each day is a new discovery. My visit with some amazing people yesterday was key, however. And the continued support from my colleague, Linda, has really helped as well. I met with a group that has dedicated their lives to ending cancer. Today. Tomorrow. Whatever it takes. I know that I take these wonderful human beings for granted, not giving them enough credit for their dedication, countless hours of their time and tenacity to eradicate cancer. So now, I will read my own profile every day. Because I have faith that someone, some day will make an amazing breakthrough. It's happened before––polio––and it can and will happen again.

Back to the roller coaster. What started it was Mother's Day. I was chillin' and grillin' with the family––yes, I was the one prepping, cooking and cleaning instead of the Mom of the house––when all of a sudden I go hit with a pain in my head, my throat and body aches that felt like I was hit by a semi. Snap! There it was. I could barely finish the meal. And eating what I cooked was really tough. My throat felt raw, which made it harder to swallow than normal. (Normal for me is with about 25-30% of the saliva of most people, as the radiation and treatments have severely damaged my salivary glands). I felt hotter than usual––I'm talking fever here, not "am I hot or not" hot––and was losing power, even though I was giving it all I got.

Ever since having head & neck cancer, when I get even a tickle in my throat, I get concerned. And I was really concerned, especially when the Doctor on Monday "couldn't find anything wrong. Strep test is negative and so is the H1N1 virus test. We can't find anything out of the ordinary." This, in spite of a 101.3 fever, killer body aches and the anvil throwers that were using my head as their playground. Now I was getting nervous. As I've said before, there's that little voice waaaay in the back of your head, that immediately says, "could it be cancer. Again?".

The roller coaster ride was ON. I was playing mental ping-pong. Sick, not sick. cancer, not cancer. More tests, ride it out. And as luck would have it, I have a meeting with people whose life is dedicated to eliminating cancer. Good people. Smart people––much smarter than me and undoubtedly less emotional than me! So I drove home an did what I do best. Come face-to-face with reality––I can beat anything, if it's meant to be.

Stop the roller coaster. I'm going to enjoy my life and family.

No comments: