Your whole life, you wake up every morning in your body. It’s your own to build and train and you have the freedom to flex it to your needs. You take for granted that it will be there to convey you through life. You spend time learning to be comfortable in your own skin and to accept your body for its strengths and flaws. You learn to love it for what it is: Yours.

And then you get a cancer diagnosis.

All of a sudden, your body is no longer your own. Any confidence you had in your body is shattered. Your body has betrayed you. It’s owned by disease, chemicals and doctors.

Cancer ravages your body and robs you of your peace of mind.

Even when the treatments have ended, even when the doctors have told you that there is no evidence of disease, cancer still rules your subconscious.

No matter how far out from treatment you are, there is always a little pea-sized nugget reminding you that every ache or pain, every tiny cough or headache could signal your worst nightmare: Cancer has returned. You try to push it aside, putting your hope in the science and doctors that said you’re cured. You live life to the best of your ability, relearning how to exist within a body that suddenly feels like a stranger’s. You push forward, always with the knowledge that if you live long enough, there’s a good chance you’ll have to face the cancer demon again.

You pray that day isn’t tomorrow. Or the next day.

Slowly, you rebuild hope. You rebuild trust. You put one foot in front of the other, from one day to the next, striving to be better and stronger than the day before, always existing alone within a body that betrayed you.

Then you get abnormal test results.

They could mean nothing- a fluke, a hormonal response, a false positive, an indication of something benign.

Or they could mean everything.

And that precarious, tentative hope and trust in the body who betrayed you comes crashing down.

I had some abnormal lab results a month ago- and the only thing to do was wait a month and re-test. It’s been a very, very long month of waiting, trying to stay positive and distracting myself with swimming and dogs. Thank you to the very few people we shared this with, who helped us carry this terror for a month. We didn’t want to tell very many people in case it turned out to be nothing, and it was a scary wait.

Wednesday, I went in for a repeat test and after a very long two days of more waiting, the results came back good. The last two days have been puke-inducingly tediously hard to get through, but to wake up to positive lab results this morning was glorious. It’s a beautiful day. I apologize for the delayed emails, lack of follow up, and sometimes prickly responses. It’s been so hard to focus on anything other than breathing; and I’m so glad to have put this behind us, for now, with the very horrible reminder that cancer never really is truly “behind us”.

But, when in doubt, go to Cabo, swim with the whales and ride the camels.

3 thoughts on “Cancer.”

  1. Thank you for shareing. Ive not been in such a situation so wouldn’t begin to try and fully understand, however, having just lost my father to cancer i understand.
    My love and admiration is sent your way.


  2. Hi Sarah,
    I’m so happy that it was good news. 😊 Thank you so much for sharing. Caring for you always.

    Keone Weigl
    Marketing and Promotions Manager
    Food Services
    T 315.443.4607 M 315.447-4815
    111 Waverly Drive, Rm L
    Syracuse, NY 13244
    Syracuse University


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