“I’m quitting chemo,” I said, halfway through my treatments. “Are you looking for someone to tell you not to quit?” “No, I’m done.” “Well, I’m telling you that you are not quitting chemo.” *** This phone conversation took place between me and my oncology nurse Ann a day after I returned from the hospital. I had been rushed to the emergency room because of a high fever and constant … Continue reading the story "My Oncology Nurse"
Post Archives from the ‘Cancer’ Category
Upon hearing that I am cancer-free thus far, people flippantly ask me if I’m now used to the "new me" or the “new normal.” I’m sure they mean well, but I really don’t know what they mean. They are tossing about meaningless phrases. I don’t like being typecast into nonsensical words like the "new me" and “new normal” because -- even if cancer is not … Continue reading the story "The New Abnormal"
As today is Ari’s last day of school, it is only fitting that today I reflect upon this extraordinary school year. As my readers know, last year Ari did not thrive in an accelerated private school, so this year we switched to the local public school. Great things have happened to Ari this year, and I am grateful. Ari immediately loved her first grade … Continue reading the story "School Milestones"
Years ago, I was unleashed onto the world as a cancer “survivor.” You know the type: triumphant, sexy, the poster child of one who fought the good fight and “won.” While many people have typecast me into this role, truth is cancer stole more from me than I can even express in one blog post. This disease took my physical and emotional health … Continue reading the story "Identity Theft"
My cats Hemi and Cosette have been with me for years, and I’ve been blessed: they have been relatively healthy. Until last week. It started with my beloved Cosette. She suddenly lost her appetite, had diarrhea, was lethargic, and withdrew. No interest in sleeping in momma’s bed. I tried coaxing her to eat, and when that didn’t work, I called the veterinarian for advice and … Continue reading the story "In Sickness and In Health"
Since breast cancer diagnosis and throughout my survivorship, I have crossed paths with well-meaning folks who make blanket statements to comfort me. It’s sometimes difficult for those not in the cancer world to sit with the knowledge that someone has/has had cancer, let alone has had difficulty coping. So people try to pretty it up by attempting to sell seemingly harmless platitudes. Like many who’ve had/have … Continue reading the story "Attitude About Platitudes"
“Mommy, what’s that?” This week, my prosthesis had fallen out of my specialty bra and fallen into Arielle’s line of vision. **** Stay calm, I thought. I knew I’d eventually tell my daughter the truth about my having had breast cancer. I just didn’t think I’d have to peripherally broach the subject now when she was at the tender age of almost seven. Plus, I was pretty good … Continue reading the story "Pre-Mother’s Day Conversation"
When I first started blogging, I just wanted to write. It was a cathartic experience to do so. Little did I know then, as I know now, that reading other cancer blogs would be equally cathartic for me. I became an avid reader of such literature. And cancer blogs are a special genre of literature. So when recently presented with the opportunity to take a survey … Continue reading the story "On Reading Cancer Blogs"
Ken Burns’ much-anticipated PBS series titled Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies -- based on Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee’s book The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer -- starts tonight and continues on March 31 and April 1. Many have set their sights and DVRs on this series. I am one of the few who will not be watching. Don’t get me wrong: I love Ken … Continue reading the story "Why I Won’t Be Watching Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies"
As my readers know, I am a mentor for those taking a free online blogging course Should I Blog? designed for people who had/have cancer. Course facilitator Rebecca Hogue posed an interesting question for me and my fellow mentors, one that’s the topic of this post. Where do you find inspiration? Because this course is about blogging, and therefore the act of writing, I’m focusing on … Continue reading the story "Blogging Inspiration"