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Coping via gallows humor...

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

When I was in my fourth year of treatment for Stave IV endometrial cancer, my eldest son became engaged to a sweet young gal who lived a couple of hundred miles from us. The first weekend she came to spend with us, she was so careful to tiptoe around the topic of cancer, surely not knowing how to broach the subject of her future mother in law's "terminal" diagnosis (I should point out that this was 17 years ago...). On the second day of her visit, the young couple were sitting at the kitchen table, trying to craft a budget for their first year of married life while still in college. Somewhere in there, they expressed the wish that they could buy a home someday. My son, knowing I had a rather large life insurance policy, looked over at me, with a grin, and said, "Hey Mom, do you think you could croak before the wedding? We sure could use a down payment on a house..." (You must understand, we had lived with this cancer for a long time and had developed a rather unique sense of humor at our house...) I thought that poor girl would faint... I quickly went and hugged her, and pointed out that I felt it was a good sign to be able to laugh at this thing, and I hoped she would feel comfortable enough someday to do the same. Three years later, when I got to see my first grandchild enter the world, her first smiling comment to her new son was, "Son, that's your Nana over there. You're kinda sorta stuck with her 'cause she's still here..."

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LoveBabyJesus
Posts: 1650
Joined: Jan 2011

Hi Ladymonk -- I am happy you are still here, and doing well. I loved your story. Put a smile on my face. Thank you for sharing.

nasher
Posts: 507
Joined: Apr 2010

thanks that helps

Today I found out I need some humor... or some better anti-depressants.

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LoveBabyJesus
Posts: 1650
Joined: Jan 2011

I am from the breast cancer forum, 33. I came here to get a good smile and I got it. I'll keep checking on you to see how you're doing.

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Hondo
Posts: 5643
Joined: Apr 2009

How are you doing these days with the cancer you once had? I love the part that says Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidences of things we have not yet seen.

God Bless
Hondo

Healing4ever
Posts: 9
Joined: Jun 2011

Did anybody get discount for a semi-colon? I mean because my colon is shorter now it shouldn't take so much time to investigate ;)
I could even ask for combining it with an endoscopy of my stomach, asking for a "Get two for one deal"!?

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Hondo
Posts: 5643
Joined: Apr 2009

I love you story it brings back a little of my mother passed memory, she too had C for a very long time and would just laughs about it sometimes and we never knew what she was laughing about.

Hondo

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

Hondo, perhaps she was simply enjoying a chuckle with God. Along with all the power stuff, I do believe He has a helluva sense of humor. That old hymn comes to mind..."And He walks with me, and He talks with me..." Maybe He cracks a joke now and then, too. I reckon they maybe shared a laugh or two during their walks... I know it has happened to me. I probably look like the next candidate for involuntary committment, but I figure if you have a chance to laugh, go for it!

We can find "good stuff" in almost anything if we look for it. Of course we grieve, and fear, and grow angry, and all those other things, as we should. But somewhere in there, in every day, there's a nugget of humor if we seek it. And maybe it helps to generate gratitude, too. My eldest son was shot in Iraq in '03. He is well now, but for a long time, I recall clearly, whenever any of us was having a bad day, he'd comment, "It's okay. Nobody's shooting at us." When his younger brother (An ex-Army ranger, I might add...) blew a hole in the garage floor the following year while handling a gun, we amended it slightly. Now we all say, when having a bad day, "Nobody's shooting at us. But, um, where's Steve?..." Sometimes we'll simply say we're "having a Steve day". And we remember to be grateful for the things we have come through, even the stupid ones...

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LoveBabyJesus
Posts: 1650
Joined: Jan 2011

Hi Ladymonk -- Glad to see you here. It puts a smile on my face. Please check back with us when you get a chance. How is your grandchild? Do you have more than one by now? :)

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Hondo
Posts: 5643
Joined: Apr 2009

You are so right, thanks so much for the reply and I hope not too have too many Steve days ahead, just love it….. lol

Hondo

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AnneBehymer
Posts: 739
Joined: Jul 2011

Thanks I need the laugh I have my third round of chemo and a cat scan to make sure the treatments are working and my mom can not go with me this time so I have not been able to sleep and a little nerves so this help alot God bless you for making it so long with cancer I hope I can to the same I am 45 with stage four ovarian cancer

Anne

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lbinmsp
Posts: 266
Joined: Jun 2006

is the ONLY way to go!

I was talking with one of my best friends and her husband. Told them that if I'm still around June of next year, we were all going on an Alaska cruise (along with my other bestest friend). Well, they were a little concerned since I could get very ill during the trip - when I had a huge AHA moment! I said - HEY! Maybe I could die on the cruise! Then they could just throw me overboard and I could save the price of cremation! Well, my friends nearly fell on the floor in shock and then started laughing! We went on and on talking about all sorts of scenarios and it ended with us researching whether it could be done!

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Hondo
Posts: 5643
Joined: Apr 2009

I am an old Salty and the answer to your question is yes it can still be done, "But" as always there are problems. There are a lot of rules now that govern a burial at Sea, unlike before you just through the victim overboard. Believe it or not but all cruise ships must take into account that someone will die and so they have a special cooler on every ship just in case. This was they can keep you fresh and off load you at the dock with all the baggie.

Hope that helps
Hondo

lbinmsp's picture
lbinmsp
Posts: 266
Joined: Jun 2006

Well, it was still a great (and fun) idea!

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Hondo
Posts: 5643
Joined: Apr 2009

Don’t you just hate that

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

I figure they won't bury us at sea while on a cruise because some entity somewhere will lose money- lots of agenices and funeral directors, etc. Maybe I'm a little too irreverent about it all, but I have stared the Grim Reaper down too many times, for too many years, to feel the need to tiptoe around the topic. To be frank, when I am gone I won't know or care if they throw me in a trash bag and heave me into a ditch. But, assuming my children might, I think it would be cool to be scattered into the Atlantic. Since our 6 kids live in 6 different east coast states, they could simpy go to the sea to visit. Somewhere a microparticle of me will be there with them. (For what it's worth, cremated remains are sterile and can be transported anywhere in the country without worrying about regulations...)

Good heavens, this is a cheery topic... This a thread about humor, right?

Hondo, I believe I am older than you. Since I am not old, neither are you...

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

(As you can see, my computer time is somewhat intermittent...) But you asked a question- We are blessed with six kids and twelve grands, and I'm not sure the grands have stopped coming. I spent almost 9 years having back-to-back chemo & radiation, have been cancer free for a long time now. Long term survival is possible, even when the prognosis stinks and the thing keeps coming back. My longest remission for 8 years was about 8 months. And then, one day, I went into remission and never came out. No magic bullet, no miracle cure. Had a brief scare in '92, and since they couldn't decide if it was malignant or not (2 labs said positive, 2 negative) we erred on the side of caution and got radiation & chemo. But it is likely that I've actually been cancer free since 1988. Not bad for Stage IV endometrial; it had spread to abdomen, chest, neck & axilla by diagnosis... Miracles do happen... And yes, I do have a strong faith.

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Hondo
Posts: 5643
Joined: Apr 2009

Wow after reading you post I do believe you are a lot older then I am. But just remember we are like fine wine we only get better with age.

Take care
Hondo

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi, Hondo! (It has been a wee while since I've been on the site, I agree...) Yes, we are getting better with age. I think it has to do with actually living each day, don't you? When you think of it, cancer can actually be a gift. It teaches us to value the things that really matter, and to quickly offload the junk that isn't worth the energy. Once upon a time, I was one of those people about whom you could say, "She keeps things so clean, you can eat off the floors." And then I got cancer, seriously advanced cancer, Stage IV because there isn't a higher number advanced. And, you know, in a heartbeat I figured out that you don't need to eat off the floors; we have one of those handy dandy things known as a table... Reorganizing the priorities, so to speak... I recall getting up early several mornings to watch the sun rise over the water (we lived in Maine at the time). Beautiful! And I told myself that, even if I survived the cancer, I would never lose that sense of wonder.

And of course, after several years of cancer free life, all the other minutiae of daily living returned, and the magic faded. But, still, there is an appreciation for experiences that would not exist if it weren't for cancer...

Be well, and for however long you've got, don't forget to live...

ps- I'm 66...

Maxxor
Posts: 1
Joined: May 2012

I just found out I have a stage 2 Gloma in March and finished up my radiation treatment on 14 May 2012. During this time I have found that grim humor is a fantastic way to blow off steam. My wife and I always like to sing the tumor song from Family guy when were having a rough day or I'm feeling down. Here is the link in case anyone has not seen it. I wish everyone the best out there.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLpu_92ozf0

Coppercent
Posts: 142
Joined: Jan 2012

I love your sense of humor! It sounds exactly how my family and friends are handling my diagnosis! A couple months back my oldest son came to check in on me on his daily checks and found me in pretty bad shape. He called EMS and they took me to the hospital. Several of the doctors said "You need to do something really nice for your son because he saved your life! You would have not made it through the night!" I was telling my younger son this who lives out of town. His comment was "Man, I am going to have to have a talk with him!! Doesn't he realize you are worth more dead than alive!" "Wow what a missed opportunity!" We have to laugh at it because if not it will take over our lives!

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

Love your sons' sense of humor! I'll bet they got it from you. I'm convinced that laughter is indeed strong medicine. And it may add to our lifespans. If not, it will surely add to the quality of those lives, at the very least. Keep us posted on how it's going... And keep on laughing!

Ladymonk
Posts: 13
Joined: Jul 2011

I love your sons' sense of humor! (Bet they got it from you...) I am certain that laughter is strong medicine. And even if it doesn't extend our lives, it surely, at the very least, enhances them. Keep on laughing!

hiccup (not verified)

I must need a new family or something... everyone always gets depressed at my life insurance jokes!

With as poor as we are now, I am the cancer lottery :)

mr steve
Posts: 286
Joined: Sep 2009

My wife and I always joked to lighten the moods when both of us were crying... But this one tope the cake... A little back ground info...My wife passed several months ago. Now back to the story, we were talking about old cars and such as men often do and some one asked if I still had my old truck, (anybody guessed where this is going) I said I would get rid of my wife wife before I got rid of my old truck! (how many times has a man said that) after I looked and saw the hurt and shock in everyones eyes I had to say... "oh! I did" I know my wife found it funny, I just hope that my farther in-law did as well.

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