Saturday, August 18, 2012

sometimes it gets noisy in my head

‘Survivorship’ is a label I was given following surgery but each day I live I’m learning that those ‘surviving’ lung cancer wage war for each day. There are not enough synonyms in a thesaurus for heroic when it comes to describing their battles with chemo, radiation, clinical trials, and additional surgeries.

There are days I wonder if I have that kind of future fight in me. Yes, there are also mornings I do wake up energized and grateful that at least for today my living with lung cancer will only be an inconvenient obstacle.

I try to embrace each morning grateful but as a long term Multiple Sclerosis spouse caregiver mornings are lonely and more about organizing responsibilities than dreams. Advocating for a spouse who cannot rather than thinking of myself. How to pay for today, more than planning some exciting plan for next week.

lung cancer survivor baseball cap
Why do people without cancer feel a need to share that “we” could die in a car accident tomorrow, or have a heart attack? "We" have not seen them or been in the same car since diagnosis. Or conversely, ‘everything will be OK!’ Don’t think about it! … or in other words, 'They' don’t want to talk about it.

As for me I would love to not talk about it, I would love to not even think about it but sometimes it gets noisy in my head like opening a refrigerator or pantry and the expiration dates all yell out at you.

450 people die every day of lung cancer in the US  alone, essentially that is the equivalent of an airliner crashing and killing everyone on board every day of the year – in what universe is this daily 'activity' acceptable?

by Patrick Leer
Caregivingly Yours, MS Caregiver @

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