Phase Three

Phase three for me is radiation. While I do not yet know all the details, I do know that I will have treatments five days per week for a minimum of six weeks; 384 miles away from home.

I learned many years ago through struggles and heartache to live like I was dying. I don’t know when I began to live that way I just know it’s been many years. I don’t even have a bucket list. When I was flying home earlier this week I was seated next to a gentleman and we talked and he said, I bet you don’t even have a bucket list. I hadn’t really thought about it much. Yes, the thought has crossed my mind, I just never put a whole lot of thought in to it.

I told him, “Nope, I am not going to live with that kind of pressure.” My bucket list would be expensive. First of all it would be things like a trip to Disney World with the kids, a Jamaican vacation with the man of my dreams (or my kids being as there is no such man) skating with my boys and an NHL team.

To fulfill those dreams would cost a crazy amount of money. I am unemployed; I do not have a spouse or significant other who supports me. I can’t even keep my light bill paid without the generosity of the people around me. There is no way I could even begin to plan a week in Florida. So I don’t think that big.

I think about things like how am I going to pay for my next trip to Rochester to begin radiation. I will have gas ($150) plus approximately a week of hotel rooms ($300 – I stay at place that caters to patients and charges less than a normal hotel) then I will be able to move in to Hope Lodge through the American Cancer Society which is free housing during treatments.

My radiation will be Monday through Friday and although I would love to return home on weekends, I just don’t see it being financially possible. The cost of my first week will eat up all available funds I have for the entire month of August (and it won’t even be August yet).

Ya, I won’t be going back on weekends. All of my household bills through August will be paid before I head south. That will be one less thing to worry about. I just know I will have no extra money at all while I am there; it’s a mindset I have to get in to. No eating out, no entertainment, no shopping. It’s not easy, just necessary.

Don’t you hate it when you actually put things down on paper only to realize just how it can’t work out the way you planned? Kind of depressing.

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Today I Knew

I don’t know why, but today I knew cancer was going to win. I don’t know when, or how. I just had a feeling come over me that told me cancer was going to eventually win this battle.

It wasn’t even an option for me, I know I am going to carry on as I have been; upbeat, positive, all hands on deck, and ass-kicking. If cancer does beat me, it is God’s will.

When I was pregnant with B2 and they told me at 12 weeks 2 days gestation that my baby would not live until the end of the week and I would need an abortion to remove the remains I decided that every minute that child was alive would be filled with love and prayer and hope. Not one day did I focus on the end. Every day I focused on that moment, with my baby…the one who knew my heartbeat from the inside. I wanted positive energy to fill his entire world. I never wanted him to feel his Mother’s heart break. It was a choice. I can’t say it was an easy or a hard choice, it was just a decision I made and stuck to. (He was seven in November and now plays hockey)

I am doing the same with cancer. I don’t know what the outcome will be, miracles happen every day. I am not posting this on my caringbridge site as my kids have access to that and I never want them to even think I gave up, because I am not. Nothing has changed, nothing will change.

We will still joke and play, and go to chemo, and eventually have surgery and then more chemo…and we will do so with a smile. We will do so with an iron will.

We will do so knowing that even if we do lose the battle, we won the war. We will have won, knowing that we honored God, we continued to serve others and allowed others to serve us. We will have won by showing so many people how to simply Love God. Love People. Period. and how the pay it forwards can continue for as far as the mind can reach.

We showed the entire world that cancer isn’t all that bad when you have faith, and an army of support. We are blessed.

In 2014, I was blessed with very aggressive stage 3 cancer. In 2015 I am going to fight it with the best doctors, the greatest family and friends, and a positive attitude. I am going to win, whether I live or I die…because cancer will NEVER beat me down. It can never take away the love, the lessons, the friendships, the faith that I have that God works all things for His go.