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Cancer

If you have cancer.

If you had cancer.

If you know someone with cancer.

If you want to talk about cancer.

We won't pray.  We won't blame gods.  We won't give credit to gods.  

We face the diagnosis and know, it is what it is.  

To the extent that we can, we will define our own course.

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Latest Activity: yesterday

Cancer

Cancer changes lives.

We have to deal with medical profession.

We have to deal with medications.

We have to deal with new discomfort and pain.

We have to create dignity, where there is indignity.

We have to deal with family members, friends, coworkers, and strangers, in a changed way.

We resolve to go forward with strength, resilience, purpose, pride, and integrity.

We define ourselves. Cancer does not define us.

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Comment by Steph S. on November 12, 2013 at 5:14pm

My thoughts are with you as you get your treatments. I've been keeping up with the postings here.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 12, 2013 at 4:57pm
Seeing ancient human-made monuments designed to catch the rising son at a specific time of year helps me to grasp just how long Homo sapiens have been able to think and build lasting structures, how short their lives were, how much space actually exists. Here is a film of Newgrange in Ireland, constructed at the beginning of the Bronze Age by a people who knew how to deliberately design and build such a massive structure. The construction took several generations because life expectancy was only about 45 years. It was over 5,000 years after the end of the last Ice Age; That was over 5,000 years ago. Stonehenge in England had not been built yet.

Historical: Tomb of Newgrange
http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/places/culture-places/his...
Comment by Daniel W on November 12, 2013 at 11:48am

Thanks all for the encouragement and positive thoughts.  Very much appreciated.

 

This is the only place for that.  Elsewhere it's all "We'll pray for you" or "God will help you".

 

I've been referred to ophthalmologist, due to the blurry vision.  That appointment isn't made yet.  I'm not in that much of a hurry.   I figure it is what it is.

 

Following visit with nurse practitioner at oncology.  Went well.  I felt like I was treated with respect and professionalism. 

 

Like Joan describes, I'm aware of a growing number of folks with cancer.  More than before.

 

For some reason, looking at ancient places gives me peace of mind.  Even with all of history, and technology, we are still Homo sapiens.  This is public domain, from wikipedia on Stonehenge.

 

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 8, 2013 at 4:58pm

Patricia, I'll have to try Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and Cauliflower frozen and "fresh" to see if I can taste the difference.

Fruit is another thing I buy frozen when I run-out of my home-grown.

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 8, 2013 at 4:26pm

Daniel, thanks for the information and the video on frozen food.  I didn't know that.  Actually, I don't remember thinking about the nutrition of frozen.  I mostly consider taste, and frozen food usually tastes better than so called "fresh"!

Hope your blurry vision is not permanent, and glad you can get some peace in the garden.

Comment by Plinius on November 8, 2013 at 12:16pm

Stay with us Daniel, we enjoy your company very much! I understand it's hard, but I do hope you can cope with the medicines.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 8, 2013 at 11:43am

Daniel, you hang in there; you have so much wisdom and gentleness in you, I/we need your spirit. Your cancer and treatment differs from mine; I can only imagine your struggle with the side effects of meds. 

Patricia’s statement of taking one day at a time makes sense, and finding the joy in each moment rings a bell for me. I very much appreciate you sharing with us. We stand with you with warm and loving affection for you. 

Yes, the prognosis 15 years ago with cancer was very different from today. Not only are the cancer rates still going up, the good news is with treatments of many different kinds, many people live longer and more comfortably with cancer today. That doesn’t say it is easy. Blurry vision and fatigue are tolerable, and the other side effects not so. 

Being productive is a relative word, productive for what? Of course I understand the need to continue working, especially with your fine talents, training, experience and wisdom. 

There are other things you do that take energy, but not the kind of responsibility you carry with your work. Your experiences offer examples of what is wrong in our culture and you have insights that need to be heard. By sharing your story, others can join with you in the determination to make lives healthier and happier and more productive. 

Sitting in your orchard, writing your story, resting when you want to, and getting your hands into the soil offer you the opportunity to just be. That is more than enough! 

Comment by Daniel W on November 7, 2013 at 8:00pm

I kind of thought this already, but it's interesting to watch.  Once the video reaches the ad at the end, nothing more useful is said.

 

I had my oncology appointment this afternoon. My vision is worsening rapidly. The nurse practitioner I saw suspects it's the medication - Gleevec. I don't know what to think about that. Everything has a price or cost, and if blurry vision is a side effect but the medication staves off rapid progression of cancer, it seems obvious to me I should continue.

Spud, in response to your question, I'm on a fairly new medication, Gleevec. It's not the horrendous ordeal of standard chemotherapy. Neither chemotherapy nor radiation therapy do anything to my cancer. The medication is new, developed in the past 15 years, probably only about 10 years of experience with its use. I take it daily. It's not thought to kill cancer cells, just stop them from growing. As of the last scan, there was no visible disease, but given the prognosis, it's believed there are microscopic deposits that don't show up, like dandelion seeds, waiting to grow and spread. There are only 2 medications, and probably both have the same effects.  Stop the medication, and the cancer is expected to grow quickly.

I feel very fortunate - I have a chance to continue in reasonable comfort, and be productive, that others 15 years ago would not have had. If not for this treatment, I might already be dead. The main side effects in my case are fatigue, episodic diarrhea, nausea, and apparently, this blurry vision. The fatigue is variable. I'm especially productive in the am. Afternoons are pretty iffy, especially if I work hard in the am.  Sometimes when it's really bad, I think maybe I should just give up.  But that is not often.  When I am in my little orchard, I feel peaceful and at one with the world.

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 7, 2013 at 10:04am

Not saying anyone else on the site complains too much.

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 7, 2013 at 10:02am

Sentient, I'm not aware of the full story of your cancer treatments.  If you don't mind, I would especially like to know what's causing your tiredness.

I get the idea you're like my dad in that you don't complain much.

 

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