Cancer? What? Me?

by Donna
(Stockton, CA)

The doctor called, it's March 2011. "You have a type of sarcoma" she said. At that moment I had my first out of body experience, I had just turned 51, I didn't really believe there was such a thing, guess what? There is. Shock set in immediately. Then the roller coaster ride began....surgery, chemo, and then radiation. This took the rest of 2011. It's now May 2012 and my cancer has spread to my lungs, more chemo, oh yes please, cause last year was fun...they tell me it's a rare cancer and my chances aren't great.

What do I do with all of this? It all feels too hard to process. I've read about the seven stages of grief, however not all of them apply to my situation, but they seem to come and go and then come back again, in a different order. I hear all of the things that people tell me about being grateful for each day and about the power of prayer, and I know they are trying to be kind and supportive, but I just want to SCREAM!

"The power of prayer" Now that's an issue I struggle with every day. If someone lives through something, some say their prayers were answered or they experienced a miracle. Okay, so wait, if someone dies, is it because there weren't enough prayers said or the miracle train pulled straight through? Oops, sucks to be you?

All I know is that I'm damned angry, hurt, resentful and depressed. None of these words define me, cancer does NOT define me, but there are many days when they take over. I'm actually funny, goofy, quirky, a true dork and I'm proud to say so. I don't want to lose these traits and my greatest fear is that I will. I want to be remembered for the latter rather than the former....

Comments for Cancer? What? Me?

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May 15, 2012
Thanks for sharing
by: Helen

Wow your awareness of life is beautiful to see, as is your awareness of how precious each moment of existence is.
We are all human and our feelings do change from moment to moment and trying to accept this can be extremely difficult.
I would like to thank you for sharing your honesty and awareness with us here on the grief blog.
Your strength and understanding is a gift and will allow you to enjoy your life to the fullest.
May this understanding bring you peace and acceptance.

May 15, 2012
I'm Sorry
by: Cathy

Dear Donna,
I understand your anger and frustration with cancer as I have it also. I know all to well how difficult it can be to deal at times and I have found myself angry with God more than once. Two years ago my mother died of breast cancer. That was a very difficult time for me and I often wondered where God was in all the grief. I prayed for some kind of understanding. She was such a wonderful lady. Why did she have to go through this? For several months all I wanted was to be in Heaven where my mother was. Ten months later, 2 days for before Christmas and still steeped in my grief, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. When I heard the doctor say that word, all I could think about was my mom and dying. I didn't really want to die, but my fear had so gripped who I was that the only place I could turn to was God. He was, and still is, the only one who truly knows me and can help me cope with all of this. I believe the death of my mom and my own battle with cancer were small steps to trusting God and necessary to what was coming next. A year after my cancer diagnosis, my son died suddenly. His heart just simply stopped. It has been 4 months and 11 days.

If it had not been for the love and comfort the Lord had shown me during the death of my mom and my own cancer, I would have NEVER survived the loss of my son. I have never felt a greater pain. All I wanted was to die and be with him.

I don't know what you believe and I would never tell you how to feel. All I can tell you is how unfair life has been to me and how I have chosen to deal with it. Each day I wake up, breathe and thank God for all He has done and continues to do for me. He never promised we would have no trials in our lives, but He did promise to ALWAYS be there with us through them.

Don't be so hard on yourself. You are not defined by your cancer and it has no power to take away who you are. Your spirit is strong. Even if you can't pray on your own, your spirit prays for you. I will pray for you too. I truly hope you find some peace. Love and hugs to you.

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