Until The Day I Die Of Something Other Than Cancer, I Will Not Consider Myself A Cancer "survivor".
I don't consider myself a cancer
survivor. I was 29 when I was diagnosed with colorectal cancer. I never saw an oncologist, only a surgeon. I was never told what my cancer was staged at, I just know that it didn't go completely through the wall. My biggest fear when I was told that it was cancer wasn't dying; it was chemo. I had a full proctocolectomy, which almost killed me and 3 more precancerous tumors were found, but still...I didn't have to go through chemo. I didn't have to put my family and children through that. My struggle was confined to 14 days in a hospital and a 2 month recovery at home. My family didn't have to do everything for me; hold my hair while I was sick, hear me cry, watch me waste away to nothing. To me, though, I also don't consider myself a survivor because to me a survivor is someone who comes through something that has ended and this will never end. It's been almost 3 years since my surgery. I still worry every time I use the restroom... is there something unusual? A few more hairs came out while washing today than normal...does that mean it's back? I seem to be getting sick more often, is it just because the kids are back to school and bringing everything home, or is "it" back? My menstrual cycle this month was a few days longer than normal, what's wrong? It doesn't make it any easier that I haven't had insurance since just after my 1 year check up so I really don't know what's going on inside of me. Some days I think what I've gone through has been hell. Some days I think I've been so blessed to have only had to go through what I have. When I hear of someone losing their battle, I cry. I cry because of the struggle that they went through, I cry because of the precious life that has been lost, and sometimes I cry for myself, because they don't have to worry anymore, and I do. I struggle in silence daily. I have the most amazing husband and children, but they don't want to hear this and I don't want them to know how bad a feel most days. Bad for "surviving" while others didn't, bad for not having to go through what others have, and bad for having to live every day in fear.