Numbers

Numbers play an important role in everyone’s life.  A lot of times without even noticing, everyone is concerned about some type of number.  Sometimes numbers can be good or bad.  I know that numbers have always played a role in my life.  Whether it be birthdays gone by, number of days to vacations, performance goals, countdown starts on Monday for the weekend and the list goes on and on. Numbers play an importantly  role in cancer treatment too.  Sometimes, it easy to get caught up in the numbers instead of living life.

There are so many important numbers to look at when going through cancer treatment.  Will my blood work numbers be good enough for me to continue treatment?  What cycle of treatment are you on?  Will my white blood count be low so I have to be concerned about infection? Taking your temperature twice a day and praying the numbers don’t indicate an infection.  Will the platelet count be low to be concerned about bleeding and bruising?  Will the red blood count be low and cause anemic symptoms?   How many more days do you need to take this medicine?  How many more pills can I actually be expected to take on a daily basis?  How many more days/months until the next scan to see if the cancer has progressed or stable?  How much was that bill for?  Getting caught up in the cancer statistic numbers is so easy.   I know more about blood work numbers now than I ever wanted to know.  Some of the numbers patients do need to monitor.  You must not let these numbers dictate how you live your life.

I still find myself looking at the numbers and comparing to previous months.  Do these numbers play as important role as they did in the beginning?  I will still enjoy any good news in the numbers, yes  but I do not let the numbers allow me to get me upset.  I do not have control over these numbers.  I do not let the numbers determine how I am going to live my life.  Is God looking at these numbers to determine my life?  As long as I can,  I will live my life to the fullest and enjoy every moment I have.

Joshua 1:9 – ‘Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.’IMG_0918

 

 

Cancer is personal

IMG_0865A very close friend of mine, sister died a couple weeks ago from brain cancer.  She sent me an email yesterday. From the email I could tell that she was not having a very good day, so I called her today and she asked me why her sister didn’t fight more. I thought what could I say that would make her feel better.    It may not seem like she didn’t fight anymore. Chemo is tough on anyone. Especially when your body is weak and the cancer is aggressive.   Her sister had fought as much as she could and then left the fight in God’s hands.    Each person’s journey is totally individual.  Don’t compare them. Even though two people may have cancer, their types, treatment and circumstances are totally individual.

After the first time I had breast cancer I said afterwards , I would never have chemo again here I am getting chemo again.  Time and circumstances make you forget the bad side of cancer.  I have a friend that died from lung cancer last year and had decided that he didn’t want any treatments.  I totally understood but some questioned his decision.  Chemo is tough not only on the patient but on family and friends.  Everyone fights in their own way. Sometimes it may seem like giving up would be easier.

I was talking to my primary care doctor today.  She asked how I always stayed positive and smiled.  I wouldn’t know how to do it any other way.  I have my faith, a great family, great friends and a positive attitude.  That’s half the battle.  The side effects and treatment are the hard part.    I share my experiences just to show what I am going through.  I have my tough days too. A couple of weeks ago ,  I had a terrible day.  I had a migraine headache and it just seemed that everything hurt.  I stayed in bed the whole day which is something I rarely do.  Steve came home and I was just laying in bed wide awake.  I knew it was hard for him to see me like that.  So I mustered up what energy  I had, got up and went for a short walk with him.  I knew it would make him feel better and it made me  feel a little better too.

I told my oncologist yesterday about my back hurting more now.  He asked me if I took the pain pills he had prescribed and if needed anything stronger.  Well, I of course told him that I took them if I was I terrible pain.  He again counseled me that the pain pills are there for any type of pain and there is no shame in having to take them.  I just don’t like taking pain pills.  No real justification, just I really don’t like how they make me feel afterwards.

No one is guaranteed tomorrow.  Make the most of the life you have now.  Enjoy all the time you have.  Enjoy life’s victories!

Life truly is short. We often don’t like to think about it, but this really could be our last day to live. But that shouldn’t frighten us as Christians, because Jesus has promised that He will give eternal life to all those who put their faith in Him (John 10:28).