Today was *supposed* to be my last visit with my oncologist for one year. An entire year. For the first time. May 16 will mark 5 years, so I will be magically transformed from “remission” to
Alas, it was not meant to be and I have to return in 6 months. My antigen markers are fine, everything is fine except for this one itty bitty number that likes to go a few points off the reservation every now and then. Oddly enough, the same lab result comes back the same way for my Dad (don’t worry, Dad, I’m not blaming you). Because my doctor is awesome, he will run it all again and review and do the check up. Still, I was a frowny, whiny person when I left his office, which is pretty dumb when I write it all out this way. Ah, well.
Then, tonight at dinner, I was talking to Maddie and Moses and explaining why it wasn’t going to be once yearly appointments yet. Their responses were so typical of their ages/personalities that I was laughing. Maddie rolled her eyes: surprise! She’s a teenager. Moses patted me and made sympathetic noises. So, we did a bit of an interview for the blog – and yes, they knew it was for this post and they gave their approval for me to share their answers.
So, our strange interview, which is a combo of free association and words of wisdom as only children can present them.
Me: What do you think of when you think of cancer?
Maddie: You. Sorry.
Moses: I think of a disease that can sometimes kill people.
Me: What do you think cancer is like?
Me: What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear “cancer treatment.”
Maddie: I think of all the time it takes that can be a waste because you feel sick and it might not even work. (Apparently, there needs to be a faster, iron clad treatment.)
Moses: Hey, cancer treatment is when they cut you open! (Yes, he really thinks surgery is super cool.)
The add on that Maddie threw out at the end wasn’t a question I asked. She said she’s not scared of having cancer – but she is scared of not finding it when it’s there. Moses, however, responded to her by saying “Nah. We’re not gonna have it.”
From the mouths of babes (or, okay, one babe): early detection saves lives, right?
My final question to them was what advice they would give to someone experiencing cancer, since they watched my experience.
Moses: You need to stay strong and you need to know that you can beat it. That’s how you kill it.
Maddie: You just have to fight through and not give up. Assuming the worst is what gets you in the end.
Maddie did assuage her major fears: “We’re still going to have a party or cake or something on May 16th, though, right?!”
You are so damn right we are, my girl. Life is meant to be celebrated. Every moment.
Blessings to you all…