A recent CT scan confirmed that the cancer is back in my lungs. This time it’s not a single tumor, but rather a scattering of small “spots” in both lungs (not sure that they are big enough to be called tumors). Surgery and radiation are not options, so I’m limited to chemo, along with some other non-conventional options such as alternative therapies (more to follow on that topic) or simply curling up into the fetal position. While I’ve considered the later, the practical side of me has opted for chemotherapy starting on September 9th.
The hardest part has been telling my family that it’s back. Understandably, they have questions that can’t be answered; questions like: WHY? I’ve given up trying to figure that one out and am putting my energy into enjoying my life. I felt the need to be “home” and near the ocean. So I’m spending the next week & a half in Nova Scotia getting prepared to start treatment when I return. The ocean gives me a sense of peace, which is the right place for my head to be as I face the side effects of Taxotere over the next several months. And the best part is that my son Adam (who is currently living is Holland) has decided to meet me in Halifax.
I am fortunate to have great support from family & friends. In a recent email, my friend Judy wrote:
"At the Burlington Dragonboat Festival the song for the flower ceremony was Lean on Me. We spent an hour at a singing workshop learning the lyrics. It was a good choice and the many teams sang it lustily. Today in the car I heard the song on the radio as I was thinking of you. I got totally caught up in the words and sentiments. If life were a movie you would be standing in your doorway (the white one with the gingerbread trim) wearing your black running shirt (which looks really good on you). Snow would be softly falling and all your friends would be gathered on your deck belting out "Lean on Me" in perfect harmony. Unfortunately I am a horrible singer but I am singing it in my heart. I hope you can hear it. You have so many people to lean on. I can't believe I have forgotten most of the words but I blame it on being 60.
Lean on me when you're not strong, I'll be your strength, I'll help you carry on, Girl it won't be long, Till I'm gonna need somebody to lean on."
To balance that out, here’s another response, from Jacquelin. Shorter, but just as meaningfull…
"Fucking hell. Sorry, can’t think of any other way to respond."