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Life After Cancer

RE's picture
RE
Posts: 4630
Joined: Feb 2004

I have read several blogs on this subject, some feel slighted to have had to deal with cancer and its long lasting side effects, some just pick up the pieces and continue on, others find a cause and attack it with a vengeance. Me I am somewhere in the middle. I have long term forever lasting side effects from my cancer occurrences, I consider them sort of like a war vet may consider a missing appendage or a scar born in battle. My missing breast (why would I keep it anyway it was trying to kill me) the lymph damage to my left arm and the nerve damage to the left hand and of course the gnawing knowledge that it can return for round 4 any time it feels like it. All these things have altered me and none would have happened without the cancer, however that does not mean I am less than I ever was. I am still RE, I still have family and friends who love me and I still have much to offer this world....cancer did not change any of that. I choose to continue living as good a life as I can for whatever time I have here. I have two young grandsons and a grand daughter on the way that I have much yet to teach, I also have two children who though they are adults they still need me. Of course there is my husband who seems to like having me around so I will do all I can to keep it that way. Bottom line is cancer has taken so much from me I cannot allow it to take my happiness, it is just not an option!

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

Well said, ma'am.

I appreciate the perspective. I appreciate the notion that, in words I have used myself in the past, cancer can only have what it is genetically entitled to. The rest is ours.

It is clear that you have chosen to recognize your cancer events not as the end of the world but the beginning, really, of a more fulfilling life, one replete with awareness of mortality and thus a thriving on the moments that we are given.

I salute you, Re, and congratulate you for both your survivorship and your great mental outlook.

Take care,

Joe

blueroses's picture
blueroses
Posts: 527
Joined: Jul 2008

Hey Re, haven't chatted with you in a long while, hope all is well with you and yours.

I couldn't agree more with all you have said. I too, despite all the side effects I personally deal with daily, choose life over just giving up and hiding and I think most of us survivors have that bottomline attitude that keeps us moving. I think that we will all continue to have some darker moments for any number of reasons (along the way) but as long as we can snap ourselves out of them as soon as possible and move on that's the ticket.

On this board we are all extended the luxury of talking out our feelings - the positive and the not so positive - and I think that's the true gift of the site - allowing us to express ourselves at any given time and in any given mood. Afterall, there are so many different emotions we go through in this cancer experience and knowing we aren't alone in all of them, when we get mired down or want to share a happy experience is the great gift of this site, to me anywho.

Depending on what kind of cancer we have had, how long ago, what side effects we deal with daily and our life's situation other than with cancer, all make for uniquely different cancer experiences as you well know. Add to all of that a person's unique personality and we all handle it similarly but not exactly the same.

Thanks for the post Re, most inspiring. Blessings, Blueroses.

tonybear
Posts: 92
Joined: Mar 2009

your reply to re helped me. thanks for the insight into a new life.

blueroses's picture
blueroses
Posts: 527
Joined: Jul 2008

That is what this site is all about, people sharing with people and thereby helping people. Glad you got some help on this thread. Hope today is a good day for you Tony. Blessings, Blueroses.

blueroses's picture
blueroses
Posts: 527
Joined: Jul 2008

Had to take a second to make an extra posting just to say that you are extremely blessed, not that I have to tell you, to have the wonderful support system that you describe. It can make all the difference in the world to a person's recovery and life afterwards. I'm so happy to hear you have that support. My marriage fell apart,as many cancer survivors experience, but as they say great challenges can either pull a couple together or tear them apart - cancer is no different. I am so happy that you fall under the former rather than the later situation. Take care. Blueroses.

tonybear
Posts: 92
Joined: Mar 2009

i too am learning to adjust. i thought i'd come home and carry on as usual. it was okay for a few months and then i got run over by the emotional side and the new approach to life changes. i have a wife and kids who care, a church that is loving. those have helped so much. i have a counselor i talk with where i was treated at. it all helps me. i am having to look at every day and every moments new change and see if it's good or bad and how it will effect not just me, but those who love me. some of it i have to kick out, sometimes i accept the changes and adjust. at 54 it is a challenge to not live on autopilot anymore. but it is a good thing to change for the better. i have found it most helpful to speak openly to my wife and counselor about what is changing. i can get ideas from the counselor. but more importantly, it keeps my loving wife aware of where i am. i am happy you made it.

slickwilly's picture
slickwilly
Posts: 339
Joined: Feb 2007

RE. That was a great post and you have so much to offer the world. And being a grandmother that has been through so much, I am sure you can teach your grandchildren to enjoy every part of life. I would bet you spoil them rotten but that is what a grandparent is supposed to do. I am still waiting for my three daughters to get busy as I really miss not having little ones around. Tonybear. It sounds like you have a great support structure in place. I am 53 years old and never though I would be sitting at home on disability. And sitting on the couch on autopilot would be real easy. I loved working and was active all my life. It drove me crazy completly changing my life. Being open with people is so important as there are many things I just can't do anymore. Its hard for people to understand when you look good on the outside but are a complete mess on the inside. Like many here I wake up and look at the ceiling above my bed and try to figure out what part of my body is causing the most pain. I take the appropriate pill and force myself to move even though the couch looks pretty good. But living life is what its all about. Slickwilly

RE's picture
RE
Posts: 4630
Joined: Feb 2004

Thank you Slickwilly, I am glad you enjoyed the post. It is so important to me to have other's see that as time progresses many of us do move on and find purpose as well as joy and happiness in our lives.

By the way, I do spoil my grandson's and we have much fun together they bring such happiness into my life.

My Best to you,

RE :-)

Christmas Girl's picture
Christmas Girl
Posts: 3661
Joined: Apr 2009

You are truly Magic Wonder Woman!

I hear you, RE. Loud and clear. And, I do understand.

Kind regards, Susan

hollyberry's picture
hollyberry
Posts: 176
Joined: Nov 2008

Dear RE,
You have inspired me on many occasions with your kind words and beautiful posts. I am so glad that you are at peace with your body and enjoying everyday. You deserve happiness!
I am still fighting the beast, but am happier now than I have been in years. It sure does affect your outlook on life. I can honestly say that I never truly appreciated all of the gifts that I had been given. Now, I am so happy just to spend time with those I love, take a walk and soak in nature and just be happy to be in this moment.
Have a wonderful Mother's Day! And, thanks for always contributing to our well-being; you don't know how many lives you've touched. I know you made a difference in mine.
God bless,
Hollyberry

RE's picture
RE
Posts: 4630
Joined: Feb 2004

You have touched me with your kind words, thank you for that. I am humbled to know that I have made a difference in your life, cancer does change us it is what we do with that change that can empower us.

My best to you,

RE

tasha_111's picture
tasha_111
Posts: 2052
Joined: Oct 2008

I have to echo what has been said in posts previous. You are one hell of an inspiration to a lot of us out here, And a good friend too. Thanks for everything Jxxxxxxxxx

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