Wednesday, May 9, 2012

A Fellow Warrior

So I'm at Sloan for my bi-weekly treatment. I'm in the waiting area having too good of a time laughing with my two friends who are keeping me company. I'm called into the room to give my vitals. I see a woman there , maybe a few years older than I am but not by much. They're asking her about her treatment and she says she doesn't know because this is her first time. She starts to cry. I try to make eye contact with her, to give her a look that says I understand. But she keeps her eyes down. I wait for my blood to be drawn and then I walk over to this stranger and tell her, "I know you're scared, I know this sucks but it gets easier." She starts to cry harder, breaking out into sobs and all I can do is lean down and hold her. I give her my name and tell her if she needs anything that I am here for her. She doesn't say anything to me but looks at me with such a mixture of sadness and fear that it breaks my heart. I can't tell her that everything will be ok because I don't know that it will. That's the thing with cancer; every case is different and it can turn on a dime at any given moment. When she walks into the waiting room I'm still there with my friends but she is alone and I wonder if she has a family to walk her through this or friends to cheer her on. At that moment I am grateful to have both.

1 comment:

  1. I can relate. I went by myself to the Nevada Cancer Institute to meet my new oncologist and discuss a treatment plan for Stage 3a sigmoid colon cancer. My friend Bobbi had recommended the fabulous clinic because she was being treated there for aggressive bladder cancer. I didn't get far into the lobby when I recognized Bobbi and her husband Irv. I saw them and just crumpled into tears. All my strength vanished. I was mortified that I had this reaction but I had to go with it. So I wasn't alone in this new experience after all...Bobbi and Irv were there to comfort and encourage me.
    Bobbi is gone now. But she's very much still there in my mind. God bless Bobbi and Irv.

    -Nancy N