Monday, June 6

Quote of the Day:  “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.”  Helen Keller

Exercise Log:  Went around the neighborhood with Sue O., Sue B., Kathy E., Lori and Patti.  Beautiful morning.  Went 4.34 miles and then 2.77 on stairmaster at night. (-.63)  I went to lunch with my 4-Season Friends today- Candi, Heidi, Becky and Kelleen.  Candi asked me if my exercising helped with the physical or psychological part of chemo and cancer.  Certainly both.  It also helps with Taxol because your joints and hips feel better when they get moved around- I notice the most pain when I have been watching TV for a while or lying down.

So everywhere I look, cancer is there.  It’s either mentioned in every show, country-western song, or news report.  I don’t know if it’s just because it is such a part of my life or if I am super sensitive to any mention of it or if it really is such a huge part of our world.  Today, Runner’s World came in the mail and sure enough had a big portion about OUTRUNNING CANCER.  One article says:  “Why does the the Big C unite the running world like no other cause?”  There is a lot of cancer-charity running which started in 1980 when 22 year old Terry Fox ran half-way across Canada in what he called his Marathon of Hope.    Terry Fox was so inspirational- he had lost a limb and so struggled to make his way in hopes of bringing awareness to the disease.

I love this part from a Survivor’s Story.   “Yes, you can be “cured” of cancer.  But that doesn’t mean you’ll ever truly leave it in your dust.”

My neighbor, Sean, has this amazingly caring way about him.  He asked me today how I was doing and let me know that his family had us in their prayers.  He asked me how I was doing psychologically and I think it was such a good question.  It’s so much easier for doctors to treat the symptoms of the disease and not deal with the psychological aspects that the patient is dealing with.  When you are in the middle of cancer care, you often just feel like a statistic.  They take your type of cancer, your age, your health and plug it into a formula and out comes the probability of your survival chances, the prediction of how long you’ll live right there on a chart.  It’s a daunting thing to look at because even though it may seem that the chances are high for your life success there is always this chance that you might be the percentage that doesn’t make it.  Even after all the torture of medicines and treatment there are no guarantees and no one really knows why some people’s cancer sticks around and resurfaces and some doesn’t.  I have been asked if chemo is as bad as I thought it would be and all I can say is that I couldn’t imagine what it would be like so yes it is worse.   Chemo is not a walk in the park.  That’s why cancer patients look at each other as if they know something between them because they do-  no one can imagine all the aspects of cancer unless you are going through it.

My neighbor also talked to me about how this diagnosis must make you look at each day a little differently and yes it’s true.  There is nothing like the chance of your mortality being shortened that can make you step back and look at life from a different angle.  And let’s face it we’re are optimists and none of us ever thinks that we will get this disease.  Even the guy who eats a McDonald’s Big Mac every day for dinner, probably would be shocked if he came down with cancer and wonder “How did this happen?”

I’m including a picture of Taylor in Guatemala because it makes me happy to see him experiencing life!


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