Area of Effect

Thursday, December 2, 2004 – 10:55 pm

Something that should be plainly obvious to most people who know me by now, is that Cancer affects not just the person afflicted, but anyone and everyone around them. The people closest to them are often the first to succumb to the pressure of the situation. The more you love someone, the harder it is to watch them go through this.

As tomorrow – Friday December 3rd – is my last official day as a “cancer patient in treatment”, I think now the attention should be focused on praying for those that have had to endure throughout the past year. It hasn’t been easy for any of them, and I think we need to take a moment to collect ourselves.

At least for the next three months – until my next CT scan – I’m a free man. I hope to enjoy whatever time I have “cancer-free” and not worry too much about things I cannot change. Too many people would suffer further as a result. I care too much about them to let that happen.

Mood: Stripped.

My Month of Radiation (or My 20 Minutes Under the Sun)

Monday, December 6, 2004 – 10:25 pm

Well that’s about it, folks. I am no longer a Cancer Patient in Treatment. I’m still not officially in “Remission” and I won’t know that for another three months, but at least they can’t possibly treat me any more than they already have. Now we just have to sit back and play the waiting game.

24 weeks of Chemotherapy, 4 weeks of Radiation, several weeks in between waiting for tests and scans and appointments. It’s been a long, hard, difficult year. I think I did well, all things considered. I’m still here, anyway. I don’t know how I feel about being “done” treatment. On one hand, they can’t give me any more treatment for at least three months. On the other hand, if the treatments I’ve received don’t work, they can’t give me any more treatments for at least three months!

So I’m going to try not to worry about that right now. You may well know there are more important things to deal with right now, so I’m going to focus all my energy into that effort and try to enjoy what time I have as a non-active patient. I’m going to settle back into a regular work routine, save up to buy my car, and possibly move into a larger residence in the new year. I’m going to assume that this is in fact the last treatment I will ever have to receive, until someone sits me down with that grim look on their face and tells me otherwise.

If you’re wondering what happens now, it’s pretty simple. If I relapse within a year (so any time in 2005), that would be very bad. There probably isn’t much that can be done at that point. Stem cell transplant would be my only viable option. If I relapse after a year, I get – you guessed it – more chemo, followed by more radiation. If I don’t relapse for five years, I will finally be able to say I am cured of this horrible disease.

Let’s hope Plan C works.

Mood: Cured(?)