Let me start by saying that I love seeing anyone who is kicking cancer’s butt in whatever way they happen to be doing it. Like I’ve said in almost everything I share, everyone’s cancer journey is different.
That being said, when I was in treatment I would hear stories from many well-meaning people about their friend, aunt, brother’s roommate, cousin, coworker, etc. who also received chemo and they ran a marathon, kept working, organized the school carnival for their 5 kids’ school, climbed a mountain or simply managed to go to the grocery store all by themselves.
This post is for the other people, like me, who go knocked on their asses and stayed in bed for six months.
The ones who could barely walk the ten feet to the bathroom and the ones who couldn’t go up or down the stairs for months because of the atrophy in their calf muscles.
Who couldn’t go to work. Or the grocery store. Or walk from the bed to the couch.
The ones whose family clapped when they came to the dinner table even though they couldn’t eat.
Those who watched the entire series of Gilmore Girls and still don’t remember most of it.
Who would vomit several times a day whether they ate or not.
Who thought all their food tasted like old tires must taste.
The people who really wanted coffee but knew it was a really bad idea.
Who gave up on the organic, free-range, super-healthy food and ate an Egg McMuffin because it would stay down.
Who wanted to go out and do something so bad they even sat in a wheelchair.
Who watched their loved ones lose sleep so they could make sure you were okay all night.
Who needed to be reminded that this has in fact happened the last few rounds of chemo and you just forgot (again).
Who ALMOST didn’t make it to their daughter’s high school graduation.
Who gave their Oncologist fits when they said they were going to go to Disney World after finishing chemo and really needing a blood transfusion
The folks who were able to watch the same mystery show 3-4 times and be surprised by whodunnit each and every time.
The ones who had hands and feet that turned an alarming shade of purple.
People like me.
All of us cancer-fighting warriors look different.
There is no right or wrong way to go through treatment.
No good way. No bad way.
As long as you make it through to the other side of treatment and get the all-clear from your doctor you did it just like you were supposed to.
I wasn’t one of those amazing people who lived their best life during treatment, in fact, I did almost nothing during chemo except sleep and vomit.
Oh yeah, there is one thing I did manage to do, kick cancer’s butt.
Original published on the “Not A Standard” blog Feb. 28, 2020