The Best New Year's Resolution
I beat cancer. But I didn't do it alone. I had a mountain of love and support and prayers and genuine kindness helping me. I will never forget.
The New Year 2018 began with the knowledge that I would be facing radiation therapy for breast cancer for several months. I was prepared. Or so I thought I was. I was schooled in what to expect.
So yes, I was tired. And I was depressed. I slept a lot. I lost my appetite. And I was still scared to death, as all cancer patients are, of the "what if's".
But what I wasnt prepared for was the unbelievable and amazing kindness and caring shown to me and everyone whom I met, during my treatment, by the staff of dedicated professionals. These are not only well trained professionals, but they have hearts. They didn't mind when I cried because I was embarrassed over how my breast looked after all the surgeries. They told me stories of other women in much worse shape than I was just to ease my embarrassement. They helped me get up from the table so that vertigo wouldnt immediately cause the room to spin. They were patient with me when I couldnt hold my breath as long as I was supposed to during those first weeks of therapy. They understood when one day they came to the table to make an adjustment and I was lying there with tears on my face. They didn't say a word. They just knew. No words were spoken..I couldn't have talked anyway. No doubt they had seen it before and they knew that a pat on my arm and a hug meant more than any words they could have said.
They entertained Shannon, my Down Syndrome daughter, one day when I had to bring her with me. They let her go in the room where they administered my treatment so that she could see me thru the monitor and ask questions. They were so kind to her. She thought it all looked like an episode of Star Trek!
This time last year I was living in a combination of exuberant relief at having gotten the all clear from my surgeon, but dreaded fear of the unknown that I was about to begin.
I got to ring the bell signifying that I was finished with cancer treatment and could go on with my life.
I'm one of the lucky ones. And I never take that for granted and I never will. I was given a chance that so many people don't get. A chance, A do over. I get to try harder, make a difference, give back, care more, love more, be kinder, be better.
All the time I was fighting this disease, I prayed to God to spare me. When you have cancer, there are no definites. No absolutes. But there is a lot of fear of what might happen.
If you have never been sick with a disease or an illness or an injury where you truly do not know what your future may be, you will understand. It is a very real, very deep gut fear that you try to fight and you are never sure that you will win the battle.
The day I rang that bell and got the go ahead, I knew God had smiled on me and heard mine and the many prayers offered for me. I knew I was going forward.
So tonight as I type this, and with tears streaming down my face, I make a new New Year's resolution.
In 2019 I will be that pay it forward person and I will try to make a difference and I will try harder to be the person God put HIS faith in, in allowing me to beat cancer.
I will try very hard not to waste precious time that I have been given.
Life truly is a gift and I was given that gift once again.
And I am grateful