Once the shock of being diagnosed with breast cancer began to subside, the rollercoaster ride of emotions took off at full speed. Along the way, I have felt abject fear, profound relief, exhilarating gratitude, immense sadness, great apathy, and pure rage. Sometimes, I cycle through these emotions in the span of one day, and other times, I find myself in one of these emotional states for an extended stay. Any guesses what the state of my emotions is today?
The title of today’s blog gives it away, but in case you still are left wondering, allow me to spell it out in no uncertain terms. I am enraged. Mad. Angry. Pissed. Infuriated. Ticked off. Hacked off. I didn’t wake up feeling this way, but as I sat in a full waiting room at my oncologist’s office today, I began to seethe.
As I surveyed the room, I saw the ravaged bodies and spirits of other patients, and many were accompanied by loved ones who wore supportive, yet worried, facial expressions. Small talk and occasional laughter filled the air, as my anger grew. It was hard to pinpoint what angered me the most at the time, but in no particular order, here are some of the things that really tick me off about cancer overall:
- I am angry that people I love are fighting for their lives right now. I wouldn’t wish cancer on anyone, but I wish cancer would stop targeting such amazing people who make this world a better place.
- I am angry about the physical, emotional, spiritual, and financial toll that cancer takes on patients and their families. It permeates every aspect of life.
- I am angry that not everyone sitting in that waiting room is going to get out this club alive. That is the harsh reality of this disease, and there’s nothing I can do about it. The inequity of this disease infuriates me.
- I am angry that I have read a number of stories lately about women with a similar diagnosis and prognosis as mine, whose cancer returned with a vengeance and took their lives. Will I ever really be able to say that I beat cancer, or will I always live with it lurking in the shadows, waiting to strike again?
- I am angry that with every doctor’s visit, lab work, mammogram, and MRI, I wait on pins and needles to learn my fate. “Routine” doctors’ visits no longer exist, and I miss them.
- I am angry at cancer. Period.
Yes, I know that I have much to be grateful for and that I should focus on the positive aspects of life, but for today, I just need to be good and angry about this disease and all that it encompasses. I feel confident that I am going to be fine, but it is hard to rejoice in that when others’ prognosis is grim. So, please, allow me to be angry, and trust that I will find my way out of it in due time. I HATE CANCER!!!
That’s another story . . .
Categories: That's Another Story