Ten years ago today I received a phone call from my doctor confirming my initial diagnosis of cancer—stage 2. Little did I realize it would metastasize eighteen months later to a terminal disease. Ten years of living with cancer taking endless pills, all the side effects from chemotherapy and getting zapped from radiation and I’m still here. No wonder I am bald, out of shape and hanging on to life by my fingertips. This disease is relentless... and life changing.
For ten years my devoted husband (BHE) has been by my side managing everything from pill taking to scheduling numerous appointments to cooking me healthy meals and so on and on and on. I was lucky to find this gem forty-three years ago.
What have I learned after all these years? Treasure every single day because they are fleeting. Cherish your family--that's all that needs to be said. Friends are the glue that have kept me together through these years. Make sure they know. Writing memories has given me a chance to leave a bit of history about what life was like when I was growing up.
Ten years means there were many good days and bad. I like to think I am more the uplifting Winnie the Pooh instead of the complaining Eyore, but you should check with BHE because he certainly would tell you.
Yes, ten years is quite the milestone, and thanks to the expert researchers at the UW Carbone Cancer Center, I plan on writing again on my twentieth anniversary!