Turning the corner

Just writing a short message on the eve of my 12th and final chemotherapy session.

Some thoughts going through my head:

1. Thanks. To everyone. For everything.

2. I’m looking forward to turning the page and putting chemotherapy behind me. I’m also nervous about what’s to come. I’ve gotten used to the structure of having doctor’s appointments every Thursday, every other weekend I enter my fortress of solitude and the energy I feel when my nausea passes and I get to start my week from scratch. Now I enter a new stage in my treatment…and a new stage in my life. Hmmm….

3. Its not over yet. I get the month of October off to let my body try to get back to a normal state – rebuild my immune system, get my energy back. Then, in November, I face radiation. Which isn’t nearly as exhausting as the chemo but still has its own set of side effects. After all that, we can deal with my blood flow. Then, the doctor’s tell me, it will take months for my body to get back to ‘normal’. But one step at a time, right?

4. What is it that I’m going to take away from this experience? There is a saying that a person is “Blessed with cancer”…which definitely doesn’t make sense when you are first diagnosed. But, as I begin my journey towards recovery, I’m curious about how these past few months will influence the rest of my life.

I’ve also heard people say that sometimes they miss the feelings they had while they were in treatment. You only have to look at some of my earlier posts to see what this means. In the beginning, I found a new perspective on life – on traffic, on friends and family, on health. As my life returns to normal, will I lose these feelings? Was my ‘normal’ the best normal it could be? Or should I re-adjust my priorities and outlook on life?

I’ve been spending a lot of my time thinking about some of these things. Mulling over my own perspective of my life.

I don’t have any answers today…just questions.

But tomorrow I will have solved one of my problems – putting chemo behind me.

See you on the other side of the weekend.

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11 responses to “Turning the corner

  1. A really thoughtful post, Steve. I’m betting that you maintain this very cool perspective and your appreciation for what really matters. I know I’ve learned a lot from you. Congrats again on getting through this part. Good luck on the other side of it.

  2. Steve, you are very inspirational and I have truly enjoyed reading your blog… I feel that I am blessed by knowing you. Keep the posts coming and we are here for you if you need anything.

  3. As long as I’ve known you, before this and after, you have had a perspective grounded in truth. Your attitude through this has been, for me, an amazing thing to experience. I’m thankful to who and whatever is responsible for your recovery. May your last session be your easiest one. You deserve it.

  4. It kind of reminds me of the stories of POW’s. It’s like when someone is in some sort of isolation there ability to recall minute details is much greater than then when they are out in the busy “real” world. A family friend who was a POW in Korea could tell amazing detailed recounts of his time in the prison camp, but was really vague on the details of his trip home.

    You’ve gone from the shock of the cancer prison sentence, to gaining perspective, and to breaking through to seeing the escape. Your experiences will not be forgotten. They will effect (or is it affect; I can never remember.) you and carry you through many troubles back in the “real” world. Nothing that has given you this strength and perspective can be broken down and lost. Through hard work, care, and support, you’re busting yourself out of this prison and will be all the better for it.

    All right- that’s enough philosophical crap from me. Seriously though, what is the difference between “affect” and “effect”? I should have paid way more attention in Ken Scoop Tucker LeVan’s class… “Please to can gab!”

  5. you are vulnerable.
    you are honest.
    you are strong.
    I am proud.
    I love.

  6. You turn your cancer to a blessing, I believe. Your attitude has been amazing, Steve, and I was able to see your approach to trials when you and Jen came to visit. I hope you guys can come visit when the Brit relatives come to visit. Love you guys.

  7. Hello, Let me start by saying how glad I am that you are done and cancer free. Dave is just finishing his 7th treatment. He also has Hodgkins. Stage 3 A s. We go tomorrow for PET and CT scans and are hoping to hear clean scans no cancer. We would love to hear from you if you email others w this disease. Your blogs are so possitive and uplifting and made us snicker a little. You seem amazing and I’m so glad I stumbled onto your site. Bless you and keep up the great pace.
    Dave, Teresa

  8. Congratulations on your last chemo session! I have thought about you often, but have not written. I know your support system is huge and I am just a fellow Hodgkins survivor that knows the blessing you were given.

    I found a new lump a couple of months ago and am still waiting for a diagnosis. I know though that the diagnosis doesn’t matter. If it is nothing, that’s awesome! But if it is something, I know it is nothing I cannot handle.

    Enjoy your chemo free days, try new things, run a marathon, kiss Jen till she is pushing you away, dance.

    • Tracy – thanks for the congratulations. And I never get tired of hearing from fellow Hodgkin’s patients. My blog seems to help some people with some questions they may have about the experience. And I’ve gotten a lot of comfort from reading other people’s stories. I’m sorry to hear about your new situation. Why has it taken months for a diagnosis? I would think they would hurry up with your history. Let us know how it turns out. And considering that you went through sheriff’s academy while going through chemo (I couldn’t imagine) – we know its nothing you can’t handle. We’re rooting for you.

  9. We think of you often and I check back in on your page as often as I can. I know round 12 has come and gone for you, but I hope it went well and that your month of stasis is what you had hoped it would be. You kicked chemo’s ass. You will kick radiation’s ass too. All the best to you and Jen.
    Brianna Phelan

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