Staying

Today is a good day for me. I went to my cancer follow-up today. Always a bit nervous, going to a cancer hospital, but I knew there were no test results or procedures to undergo. It’s been four years now since I was diagnosed and had surgery. And they’ve handed me off to my GP for further annual check-ups – no more annual colonoscopy or scans. I’m unofficially ‘cured’, though they never say that.

So happy. I was so lucky, and so many are not.

I wish I’d thanked my surgeon more. I did say at one point thanks for all your help. The appointment goes so fast, it’s hard to even realize what I should be doing.

I also had a complaint, because six months ago, they cancelled my follow-up because all was well, but then I got a call from the hospital that I should come in after all, in two weeks time. I freaked out, sure some really bad thing had emerged from my scan. After a week of real fear and mental anguish, it emerged there was no appointment for me, and the call to come in had been a mistake. I told the nurse about this today. She was so sympathetic – I felt really validated, that yes, this was a problem that had happened, harm had been done for no reason. At the time it happened, no one sympathized with that aspect, my unnecessary fearful week. The surgeon also apologized. They were basically nice, and seemed intent on making sure that didn’t happen again.

So that happened, and then I learned that my cancer appointments were now over. And I wish I’d thanked them more.

It goes to show too, how very pessimistic and fearful I can be. When I was diagnosed, I was so very afraid, and I stayed afraid for a long time. And I could have looked at it all more hopefully. But I chose not to. I want to be more hopeful in future – expect that all things being equal, a good outcome is likely.

Also just learned that Gwen Ifill died today, very young, of cancer. She was one of my favorite journalists, so smart and such a trailblazer. So very sad. I’m not going down the road though of thinking – she was so talented and beloved, and she died, while I live. I do not seem to contribute much, and don’t have many friends, and wouldn’t be much missed. Yet my small life is still important to me – I still want it, I want to be here. Life is mysterious and sad sometimes, and there is no rhyme or reason as to who is taken and who gets to stay.

Well, I’m here. I get to stay. I’m grateful today.

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7 comments
  1. Oh im so glad its very scary not knowing and it is important to stay as positive as we can. Your life still has worth and meaning regardless of any so called achievements or mistakes. .celebrate you. ..you are worthy. ♡

  2. That’s great news that you don’t need that same level of followup any more. If you wanted to say thank you more definitely, I’m sure the surgeon or other staff would love to hear from you with a short note or a card if that is something you’d be comfortable doing. They wouldn’t expect it, but it wouldn’t be strange either.

    I’d also like to say, regardless of what you feel you have or haven’t achieved, no-one’s life is worth more than any other. You are valuable just as you are. But I do like to read your writing, so I’m glad you’re here for that as well.

    • Ellen said:

      I hadn’t thought of a card – good idea.

      Thank you Dangerous.

  3. great news ellen. so glad you are cured. well even if its unofficially. glad your still with us. xxx

  4. e.Nice said:

    I am grateful you are around.

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