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Will it ever be the same?

mr steve
Posts: 286
Joined: Sep 2009

My wife has been getting treatment for 4 years now. It seems the only questions that I get are how is she doing. WHats going to happen after the fight is over. Will we be able to have some extra money to do things that we haven't been able to do in so long. Will I be able to talk about something other that this curse. Do the smiles return? Does our sons smiles return? What disaster follows next?

Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

Wow this has got to be really stressful for you having to see your wife suffer for 4 years!! My husband died almost 2 years ago, after only being diagnosed 2 months before. I'm not sure which is worse. We hadn't even gotten used to dealing with this disease and he was gone. Just let your wife know you love her all the time. How old are your boys?? And what is the prognosis?? "carole"

DrMary's picture
Posts: 522
Joined: Nov 2010

It is hard to have your life on hold for so long, and even harder when something happens to keep it on hold even longer than you thought. You are right - there is no guarantee that something else won't happen when the fight is over. Cancer can come back. Treatment-related side-effects can crop up. But also, earthquakes happen and people get hit by buses. It's not always all about cancer.

We found ourselves moving away from the "after this is over" talk - I would think, "when things get back to normal" and knew that was a bad idea, for me. I had no surety about our future, except the knowledge that there would never be the same "normal" again.

I had to try to do more of what I'm bad at - living in the moment. I would find myself putting something off - a treat, a trip, an adventure, or even just house repairs. I was planning to do all those "later, when things are better." One day, I realized that "now" might be the best it would ever be again.

OK, so the treat was a bit less enjoyable, the trip shorter and the adventure pretty mundane (and the house repairs a total lick-and-a-promise) but I made sure we did them.

As it turned out, things did get better. But I'm glad I didn't wait for them to do so. Now, we have the memories of the "sort-of-good-times" and are adding to them with "getting-better-times" and the occasional "almost-awesome times."

Don't put things off - light those candles, get out the good china, eat dessert first, let go of the things you haven't been able to do (unless you can do them in modified, cheap form) and try really, really hard to find things to talk about. That last was hard for me, as I was pretty obsessed. The obsession did pay off at least once, when I had to make a drug-based decision in seconds, but I was pretty boring company to anyone not taking large quantities of pain-killers.

Making time to help our children smile was tough - they all felt bad for taking time away from their father. They were old enough to realize, however, that it actually helped him to know they were having fun.

To paraphrase Ed Walker - yesterday is just a memory and tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. Do what you can with "now".

Brenda Bricco
Posts: 579
Joined: Aug 2011

I don't know if normal will ever return...:(

mr steve
Posts: 286
Joined: Sep 2009

It took me some time to reply because I was thinking (scarry yes I know)Other than her cancer I dont think I would trade anything. It has taught me alot the true importance in life. I hear people talk about not being able to pay bills, my wife hasent worked for 4 years. we have learned to get buy on what I make. Sure we have gotten love gifts and they help greatly. They say I can't stand my spouse, careful what you say your time may be cut short. Our love has gotten stronger and stronger, even with her mood swings. How would you feel with a terminal illness??? Our sons are the real losers in all this there Mom's time have not been the greatest the past few years and that hurts the most. Normal what is normal? Would I want it? Maybe I just need to build a fire outside and throw empty beer cans it until nothing but embers remain...

Tina Blondek's picture
Tina Blondek
Posts: 1566
Joined: Nov 2009

Hey Steve
Nice to see you posting. My heart goes out to your and your wife. Your story sounds so familiar to my mom and dad. Dad was dx in 11/08 with EC. He had a 16 mo battle and passed away in March 2010. My parents and I began to write in a journal 12/08. It proved to be so helpful for all of us. We were able to pour out our many thoughts and feelings. My parents relationship of 50 years grew much stronger. Dad's cancer brought us all together as a family in a real good way. We were all able to forgive and forget the past, live for the day, and show our love for one another. Go build that bonfire with your wife and watch the beautiful colors of the flames. You have done an awesome job taking care of your wife, and she knows it. Keep up the good work, and keep in touch.
Tina in Va

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