Sunday, June 10, 2012

Ignorance Is Bliss??

Why oh why do I Google? It serves no purpose other than to scare the living hell out of me, yet I do it all the time. It's like a scab I won't stop picking at.

After a great day with the hubs, I get all cozy on the couch and whip out the iPad for some mindless entertainment. Instead, I find myself googling my oncologist, which leads to articles and interviews. Statistics begin to jump out at me; like how several years ago there was an 8 month survival rate for the type of cancer I have. Fuck. Then I read the 5 year survival rate has now gone up to 56%. Yay...I guess. While that's a pretty significant jump; what about the other 44%? 5 years post diagnosis I'll still only be 40 and that's young. Well, not "young" like beer pong and booty calls...but certainly too young to die. Fuck! Let's not go there. Time to put the mental brakes on. Ugh, Google!!!! Damn you to hell.

It's taken me quite some time to absorb the enormity of what has happened. I knew nothing about colon cancer except that my mom had it and beat it. No big thing, right? Wrong. Mine, as luck would have it, was far more advanced. I didn't want to know what stage it was because I didn't want that number in my head. I figured what did it matter, I was going to throw everything I had at it anyway. Then one night I googled. Stage IV. Fuck. There's no Stage V. No wonder Joe went pure white when the doctor diagnosed me. He knew what we were dealing with. Ok, cue the breakdown. Done and done. When the thing you fear the most happens to you, it really frees you up to stop giving a shit. Stop caring what people think about you, stop trying to live up to others' expectations of who and what you should be. Living authentically. What a concept! For the first time...EVER...I am at peace. At peace with who I am, with my life and with my future; however long it may be. Truth is, no one knows how long they have on this planet; people with cancer are just more aware of it. Because of this, I'm choosing to see cancer as a gift rather than a death sentence (fuck you Google). I've been wondering how I can turn this experience into something truly positive for others. While I can't donate my body to science (too much beer pong and booty callin', but that's for another post) or fund a new hospital wing, for now I can impart some newfound wisdom. Here's a nugget....fear nothing. Really, absolutely nothing.  Every day try to do something that makes you uncomfortable. Whether that means setting your own personal boundaries, applying for that dream job or telling someone that you love them...do it and do it now. Live your truth. Let me know how things change for you. In the meantime, I'll be working on my 5 plan....40 never looked so good!



5 comments:

  1. Awesome writing! Too bad I can no longer read this, my cold-hearted ass got a little choked up...Go Team Leenie...FUCK CANCER!!!!

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  2. Haha..Even though it says Anonymous...I know who this is!! LOL. Love ya, cuz! Let's keep fighting the good fight

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  3. Ya know I ALWAYS got your back!!!

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  4. I did that in the beginning as well. Breast cancer dx , advanced, steroids kept me up and I Googled. But what I learned was that beyond the scary stuff most of the stats come from outdated studies with meds that are not used because newer ones have replaced them BUT more importantly that those studies were only funded with grants for five years and as there was little or NO follow up that they never tracked the successes. Pay no never mind. Your body is a miracle. I always tell my onc to tell me what I can't do and my body will do it. No remission--hey, we may have one here. LOVE your style of writing!

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    1. We all pick at the scab, I guess. I wish you nothing but the best possible outcome in your treatment and in your life. Thank you for reaching out and for your kind words. Kathleen http://www.elephantjournal.com/2014/01/fck-it-list-2-0-seattle-kathleen-emmets-adult/

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