I noticed a few days ago that I was coming up on the sixth month anniversary of the date I heard the news that would forever change our lives.
So much has changed. It feels so long ago. Thinking about that day, I can feel exactly what I felt at the second I got that dreaded phone call. Those few minutes will stay with me forever.
Thankfully, I feel stronger, braver and more confident than I EVER did pre-cancer.
Cancer sucks, no doubt, but I truly came out of this a better person.
Besides all of the appointments, I'm really happy with where we are in our lives. I love the people we have chosen to surround ourselves with.
Thanks to all of you for sticking with us during these crazy times. We know how easy it would have been for you to walk away.
On a sad note, I received an email a few days ago that I wanted to share with you.
I had mentioned in a previous post about a nice family I had met at one of my infusions. Her email tells our story.
My name is M and you may not remember me...
On Wednesday, December 28, 2011, I met you at the office of Minnesota Oncology in Woodbury. I was there with my mom, J, and we had just gotten the news that her cancer (she was a 5 year breast cancer survivor, but it had returned over the summer in her intestine) was not responding to the treatment she'd been receiving since July. At that time, our oncologist gave my mom a choice--to cease all treatment, or to begin chemotherapy.
Without missing a beat, my mom chose the chemotherapy, so we went into the infusion room with her--and that's where we chatted to you. (If you'll recall, you and I had actually joked around out in the waiting room for a few minutes when you "stole" my seat! It was obvious, from that moment, that you had a great attitude and wonderful sense of humor!) You told us all about your own experience with breast cancer, shared a lot of information and resources, and showed us pics of yourself at various stages of your treatment (we loved the pink wig!)...
I went home that day--being so glad that we'd met you. You were such a ray of sunshine and you gave us such a positive feeling of hope.
My mom was able to tolerate 2 chemo treatments...but sadly, about a week after the second one, she developed a very serious and life-threatening complication. She was hospitalized and stabilized, but we had to make the very difficult decision that there would be no further treatments...and that our goal would be to just make her as comfortable as possible--and let nature take its course...which it did. She was transferred to a nursing facility on January 16 where she could receive hospice care...and on Wednesday, January 25, she passed away peacefully.
I've always believed that, as we go through our days, we touch the lives of others--sometimes without ever realizing the impact we've had on them, so I just wanted to take this moment to share with you that you did, indeed, have a very strong and positive impact on us...
I wish you a very long, happy, healthy and cancer-free life...!
My heart ached reading this. It's a grim reminder that, unfortunately, cancer can not always be stopped. I haven't stopped praying for M. I can't imagine the pain her family is feeling.
I also can't thank M enough for contacting me. We all need reminders that each of us have the ability to impact others with our actions and words.
Until we meet again, J. Rest in Peace.