As I sat in the room where the ultrasound was being performed, I wondered why it was taking so long. After all, it was just a cyst. Could she not find it? Was she being extra careful, trying to get lots of pictures for the doctor so he could drain it? I mean, sheesh! This shouldn’t take so long.
She finally finished and said, “I just need to show this to the radiologist and I’ll be right back.” When he came in the room, he asked me to get back up on the table. He wanted to check something. Then he exclaimed, “What is THAT?” Doctors aren’t supposed to exclaim that in front of the patient are they?
To my horror, what I thought was a cyst, turned out to be a cancerous tumor. It took almost three weeks to have the biopsy and finally get the results back. I remember the radiologist saying, “Dr. Cooper has requested we put a rush on this.” Huh? Why?
It didn’t quite sink in until I began chemo five months later. I went through multiple surgeries before chemo. Those months included a lot of doctor visits and a surgery almost every 3 weeks five from May until September. So chemo was in the distant part of my mind during this time.
Had I not had to go through chemo, I believe I wouldn’t feel so scared of having to ever go through it again. That’s right .scared.
I have a nagging fear in the back of my mind about having to go through it again. Every ache that doesn’t feel quite right, every headache, every tinge of pain or soreness the first thing that pops into my mind is, “What if the cancer is back?”
I take precautions. I take my medications. I pray. A lot. But the fear is very real. And it’s something that I believe every cancer patient faces.
I read one time that fear stands for “false evidence appearing real.” Most of the time, those aches and pains are just that aches and pains. But when you’ve heard the words, “You have cancer,” that fear is VERY real.
I survived with the help of God’s healing power and my friends and family praying constantly, my doctor’s and caregiver’s knowledge, and the treatment. And while I’m grateful for the treatment, it’s something I never, ever want to go through again.
Today I am cancer free. I continue to pray to remain that way. My family and friends still pray. My doctors and caregivers stay on top of the most current research and studies. They adjust my medications accordingly. I never miss a doctor’s appointment. I want them to know me by name and on first sight because, in part, my life depends on them.
Yes, the fear is real, but so is the healing. And for that, I’m truly grateful.
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