Thursday, 24 March 2016

The reality of living with cancer - When a strong woman has weakness


I promised this blog wouldn't have any negativity because of my fight against cancer.
I can't lie to you and say that in the middle of all the positivity and fight against it, in this year and a half, I have not had my sad days.



When I was diagnosed I refused to give into it. I set myself positive goals, went through 2 surgeries, 1 radioactive iodine treatment, many doctor appointments, many exams, and I fought in my own way too.

I have been called a strong woman, a fighter. I have been asked how I felt and how I was doing and my reply would always be "I'm good!".

I tried continuing my life as close to as normal as I could. As if I didn't have cancer, to a point, not a lot of people that see me constantly know that I carry this.
People even tend to think I have an easy and fortune life.

My wedding
It wasn't enough for the cancer to come to me, but it decided my life had to revolve around it. Being diagnosed just 2 months before my wedding. And having separated my husband and I throughout checkups and treatments.
I always dreamt that my marriage at least on the first few years would be the honey moon phase, everyone talks about.
Man, was I wrong! I have been married for 1 year and 2 months today, and our lives have revolved on fighting this cancer. The money, the patience, the focus, everything. We both changed so many things in our lives to help fight it. Have we actually just enjoyed each other with no worries, maybe for a week? No!
The day after my wedding I already had to be put on a special diet for it, which cut me from having things like ice cream, cake or any different meal we would want to share together.

It has been 1 year and a 4 months of the diagnosis, but this period of time has been very tiring to me.
Researching endlessly, testing theories, looking for different doctors, looking for people with my cancer, keeping positive.

Do you have any idea how exhausting it is to keep positive all the time?
Extremely! And no matter how hard you try, you will never manage to be 100% of the time positive.

Right after surgery
I managed to keep positive most of the time. But every now and again I get the dreaded days, like today, where no matter how much you try all you can see and feel is negativity.
Where questions like these dominate:
"Why am I fighting?"
"If I am meant to have this, it doesn't matter how hard I try, I will still have it!"
"I have no strength anymore."
"I am tired!"
"What would happen if I give up?"
"Should I just throw everything up in the air and live as if I had nothing?"
And where crying is the only thing you want to do.
You don't want to leave your bed, or do anything.

This is the reality of having cancer. No matter what type, or what stage. This disease has the power to take the strongest woman, and make her seem weak.
Don't be fooled by looks. People hurt inside and get desperate without showing it.

I didn't want to post today. I kept crying, trying to pick myself up and as soon as I felt a little better I fell again. Things I had listed to do today stayed back because I can't bring myself to it.
I have cried to my husband quite a few times today, and every time he helps me pick up my broken pieces.
I didn't know what to do anymore. I needed to find a place or something to try and put my negativity into so I could go back to my positive strong woman. The only place left was here.

So I am so sorry for bringing you a sad post. Sorry if I upset you.
Feel free not to comment, skip this post.
This is not going to happen often. I hope this will be the only time.



If you made it to the end of the post, thank you for reading.

7 comments:

  1. I am so sorry to hear about your struggles, but I feel your strength through your words.... and so glad you have your husband as a support. I imagine this illness has made your marriage and relationship stronger... and please keep posting and update us, your readers, keep on fighting!

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    1. I will do!
      It has fortified my relationship with my husband and my parents!

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  2. Stay strong! you are amazing and you can do this!

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  3. Stay strong and positive! I too was diagnosed two weeks before the wedding and had my first surgery two weeks after. I've since had two rounds of RAI and another round of surgery. 1yr 4months since day of diagnosis, there is no good news in sight but I try to live each day as normal as I can. Most importantly, stay optimistic, positive, healthy and do not let stress get to you.

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    1. We got diagnosed around the same time, it seems, and same to you. I believe we both can do it!

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  4. Paola, beautiful lady. I stumbled onto your website by chance as I was pintresting fairy gardens for my daughter. My life has revolved around cancer for the last 4 years but not my own. I cant imagine what you have gone through and don't have words enough to say I am sorry you as a young woman are having to experience this. My mother-in law was diagnosed first with colon cancer. I took her in, drove two hours every day to radiation treatments, gave her injections, laundry, three extremely healthy meals a day and more. My children were in 3rd grade and kinder at the time. I did my best to maintain a normal life for them which included cub scout master, PTA, room mom, tae kwon do lessons, piano and gymnastics. After 5 months of living with us she wanted to move back home. A week later my husband was diagnosed with colon cancer after a colonoscopy. We were floored nonetheless as my husband has been a vegetarian most his adult life, never smoked, rarely drinks, meditates and does yoga every day and sends good energy into the world as a health care provider. Asking why him was just insane to reason with. I was told his surgery would be two hours. I sat waiting patiently with my two children. Yes alone except for my babes (as my family lives in a different state). Well two hours turned into 7 1/2 and the proposed two day stay in the hospital turned into 7. It was a long year of chemo and him off on disability. Since then my dearest friend and sister-in-law has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Recently we had a oncology appointment that we were in the clear and he is three years out and cancer free. But, life is never that simple. Three weeks ago he thought he was having a heart attack and ended up in the ER. The past weeks have been spent with countless xrays, ct scans, pet scans and more. This week I found myself doing NOTHING. I would drop my kiddos to school, come home with good intention to clean but found myself frozen to the sofa watching cooking shows until I needed to pick up my kiddos. I remember this state I call "being frozen" all to well as I experienced it 20 years ago as I was caring for my father that needed a heart transplant. Being frozen is this state of no desire to do anything and if you do have to do something, simple decisions were painstaking. What to wear to my fathers doctors appointment would pathetically take hours. Many tears, many questions, many prayers begging for mercy.

    While I am no one to give advice or even be able to say I understand what you are going through I just felt the need to share with you what I have learned in our journey. I learned from my dad's struggles that its ok to have these periods of being frozen and to do whatever it is to get you through the funk. With him it was sitting in church alone on Sunday mass and crying for an hour. Also watching old Doris Day movies some how helped too....not sure what that was about. I also learned that no one should go through this alone. People want to help. Unfortunately they don't always know how so you have to be vulnerable to ask for what you need. Be kind and gentle with yourself and never apologize for catharticly venting on your blog page. You never know when some crazy mom on pintrest (and the help of the universe) might find you and connect. I've also learned when I was in high school that the simplest things like a smile or a carton of ice cream might touch someone in ways you never know. Continue to blog your story and struggle. You have touched my life today in ways you will never know. Tonight I will be lighting a candle sending you healing white light. You are in my prayers.

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