You might be thinking WTH?! Cancer? Awesome? Really? What the hell is wrong with her head?!
I agree that cancer really, REALLY sucks. A lot! But when you are diagnosed with it and are told that it’s not really the type of cancer you can beat and your best option is to live with it and endure treatment for the rest of your life, how you react and deal with THAT is all a matter of perspective.
Nobody chooses cancer. Cancer chooses. Cancer has chosen my loverman. Before cancer, I would have told you that I love him with all of my heart and soul because I think everything about him is awesome. Cancer doesn’t make him less awesome. It actually adds to his awesomeness and it makes him more special.
We have come a long way since loverman (aka: Kevin ) was diagnosed with CML – Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia, one week ago today. The diagnosis, the severe complications that required emergency surgeries and the blood/bone marrow tests were really horrifying, shocking and difficult to accept. But we did it. My last post, “Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia – The Diagnosis” explains the details of the diagnosis, if you are just tuning in.
The only cure for this type of cancer is a high risk bone marrow transplant. However, many patients live a full life with treatments. So the cancer is not cured, it’s just essentially kept in a TIME OUT! Both Kevin and I agree that we need to respect the disease, follow the doctors’ orders and keep focusing on a positive outcome.
Although we have had our meltdown moments, we have managed to laugh more than we have cried. Even at his worst, Kevin had everyone including the nurses laughing with his quick wit and humor. I think the nurses would check on him more than necessary just to see what he would come up with next. Then they would go tell the rest of the nurses at the nurses’ station and we would hear them laughing out loud. One incident in particular, the nurse checked on him and he was sweating. It was SO hot in the ER observation area. The nurse asked him if he was too hot. He looked at her very seriously, pointed his finger at his head and slowly down to his feet and he said, “Of course I am, didn’t you notice?” The nurse laughed out loud and said, “WELL played!”
The last week has been bittersweet to say the least and I have learned so much. Yes, it would be easy for us to be devastated, angry and depressed about what we have had to endure, but life is too short to waste precious energy and time on that nonsense. Instead, we choose to learn positive lessons from the “should haves”, “could haves” and “would haves”, recognize the blessings and find the humor in everything. I know I might sound like a broken record when I constantly talk about focusing on the positive, blessings and humor. However, focusing on these three things in any given situation, even really tough adversity that involves tragic circumstances, can mean the difference between living a life of awesomeness and living a life of misery. It also makes it easier to accept certain fate and it helps your special ones support you. Playing the pity “why me?!” card makes it extremely difficult for others to support you.
Positivity and laughter are very powerful. They are also FREE! =) And let me tell you, after being told that loverman’s lifesaving chemo “TKI” treatment, that he will have to take for the rest of his life, will cost between $1500 and $3000 a MONTH, free sounds good to me! LOL I almost choked on my own saliva and then busted out in laughter when the doc told us the cost depending on the brand or generic name. Oh, and not all pharmacies can get the generic.
Negativity, anger and self-pity are also extremely powerful. These emotions ultimately compromise your mental and physical well being, they bring you down, and eventually if you allow, these emotions will destroy everything except for themselves. I’m not kidding. In our case, focusing on negative outcomes, anger and self-pity would not destroy the cancer, it would just make it easier easier for the cancer to destroy Kevin and our relationship. And every single day, especially in the beginning of this journey, I have drilled that into loverman’s mind. Now, he thanks me for that.
I talk about the power of positive thinking verses negative thinking a lot in my book, Stairway to Awesomeness.
So as the week that has changed our life comes to an end, I am grateful for these things:
Positive lessons learned: Pay attention to your body and listen to it. Unusual changes might be huge red flags that require medical attention!
Blessings recognized: Loverman is ALIVE and that in itself is a miracle and a blessing! Our family and friends have been absolutely incredible. We are truly grateful for all of the love, support, thoughts and prayers. We have realized how blessed we are.
Humor found: We have laughed SO MUCH since the beginning of this journey and it has been powerful medicine. We refuse to take any of it way too seriously.
Here’s hoping for another blessed week. Thank you for stopping by! =)