Trust it. It’s real.
Maybe having my Dad die when he was only fifty-years-old allowed me to entertain the possibility that, I too, might get cancer.
Breaking into tears, surrounded by girlfriends, on a run years prior to my diagnosis. Fearing; I might have it. Something wasn’t right.
Months past. But with gentle nagging from my accountability partner, I finally made an appointment. It wasn’t until the end of that meeting, I casually mentioned the strange symptoms I was experiencing.
She ordered the tests.
After a colonoscopy (because of my family history) and upper scope… I was squeaky clean. Breath.
The anonymous doc, who did the procedure, asked-in passing-why we were doing this? I told him my symptoms. He suggested an ultrasound.
I eventually called.
Thyroid ultrasound. And, Radiology found nodules. Next, Schedule with an ENT.
Bingo. Opted for needle biopsy. I thought natural childbirth was scary.
That sucked. Hurry up and wait…
The call came. pupillary carcinoma. Ok. Perfect. Not by accident-my Mommy was visiting me. Military orders 3000 miles from home, with a spouse that would soon deploy to Afghanistan… I couldn’t believe it.
At least it’s curable. “Very good cancer to get”, they kept saying. I didn’t feel entitled to be scared. Or mad. Or anything.
So, the surgeon cut it out. Waking up with a slash across my throat and a secret fear.
I fucking have cancer. I have two kids with special needs. What if…?
What followed was a series of secret lows. I knew I should be grateful; every time I traveled to the Cancer Center, I was the lucky one with the “easy one” while others were bald, in wheelchairs and/or emaciated.
So I bottled it.
Here I sit. Three years later. Cancer free.
I am only beginning to truly digest the gravity of how that diagnosis effected me; As a mother and wife. Moreover, how IT changed me.
I had fucking cancer.
At least it was a good one…