Monday, June 01, 2009

Telling

While most people in my world "know" (about my breast cancer), there are still a few people who don't. These include friends who live nearby but whom I don't run into very often; people, like some college friends, who live far away and with whom I only communicate with once or twice a year; people who aren't on Facebook and/or who don't read my blog; and others who for some reason just don't know. So now it's been 5 months, and there are still some people who don't know. And it's still very strange when they find out.

The first thing that happens is that they feel awful. For not knowing, for not being in the loop, for not being in touch, for not being able to help. Then I'm in the position of having to reassure them-- "oh, really, I'm doing well, I'm feeling fine, everything's okay." Then they want to hear the WHOLE story. Then I ask about them, how are they, what's happening with them, and pretend to be brave and strong, etc. It's so much fun.

What I'm trying to say is, it ISN'T fun at all to tell people. I hate telling people. It upsets them, it upsets me, it puts me in the position of having to make them feel better when actually I don't want to be in that position...it sucks. So I hope not to tell anyone else. Although I know there are a few people who still need to be told.

In other news, as my radiation winds down (1 more treatment to go!), I'm starting to breath a sign of relief. Kind of. The bulk of the treatment is over, and now I just have to deal with whatever side effects I'm going to have from the ovarian suppression and Tamoxifen. For the next 5 years. And then basically I just have to hope and trust that everything that's been done to me and everything I'm doing will prevent those little cancer cells from growing again. Because I don't want a recurrence. I keep hearing about women who did it all, only to have it come back worse. I don't want that to happen to me. And I'm scared about it. Damn scared.

I also keep hearing about women who are just finding out that they have breast cancer (and other cancers, too), and this makes me very sad. And angry. Angry that everyone is focused on finding a cure, and no one seems to care about preventing it in the first place. What is wrong with everyone? I'm starting to think, too, that cancer is big business, and someone is making a ton of money on it. That's making me angry, too.

2 comments:

Kibbitz said...

In keeping with your theme of telling, I mentioned your name during mishaberach's the other morning and Susan Sobel asked if your father was a Jewish educator. When I said yes, she told me that she will also add you to her daily prayers. Small world.

As an aside, you can tell J that she taught Kevin Youkilis and his brother in Hebrew school when she lived in Cincinnatti.

BTW - have you read the study that the rate of recurrence beyond 5 years drops off dramatically. At some point, you might put be able to feel in control of your health again. In the meantime, we can only hope and pray that the medical community continues to battle.

Anonymous said...

You are so staggeringly open and honest, and I find I am constantly so touched reading your blog and understanding the depths of my friend.

B