Tuesday, April 21, 2009

one year later

It's a year ago this week since I started chemo. It was on a Tuesday, like today, and the date was April 22.

The day before I started treatment Babs came with me for a training session. A nurse told us about drugs, side effects, what to eat during the months of treatment, and what not to eat. It was pretty overwhelming.

Then the next day Dan came with me for the actual infusions. It wasn't 10% as bad as I thought it would be. It wasn't 10% as bad as he thought it would be either. When we were done I waited outside while he got the car. He told me later that he thought he'd have to carry me the few steps between the bench were I was sitting and the curb, but I got up and walked just like a normal person.

The only images of cancer patients that are available in popular culture come from after school specials, movies like Terms of Endearment, and the cover of National Enquirer. It's not helpful. Cancer is a horrible disease, but many people go through treatment living relatively normal lives. It's perfectly possible to have a relatively normal life while being treated for cancer. But that doesn't make for any dramatic endings of movies, or dramatic cover stories.

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