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December 30, 2004

Popping Cancer update - The Waiting Game

So far I feel just ducky. You never feel bad from cancer, really, until they start to treat you for it.

I am, however, in a word, impatient. I want to fight or scream or be sad or be hopeful, but I don't have enough information yet. I'm like a soldier who doesn't know where, or even if, he's being sent into combat yet. If I were a metaphorical horse, I'd be chomping at the proverbial bit.

Something about my life - the microwave oven that cooks my dinner in a minute and a half, the remote control to the television, the Interweb where everything you could possibly want to know is a simple click or two away, something - has made me cringe at the prospect of waiting at all anymore, for anything.

I not only want it my way, I want it now! I guess at least part of that is human nature and the frenetic pace of life around us in the U.S.

It's worse when what you're waiting for is, literally, life and death news. I won't have any more substantive information until next week. Of course, when next week hits, it'll be a doozy: Dentist Monday, PETscan Tuesday in Cleveland (an hour and a half away, sans snow), surgeon Thursday in Cleveland, oncologist Friday in Cleveland.

By the end of next week, I will know how extensive and pervasive the sarcoma is, as well as what steps (and I hate to say it but: if any) we will take to kill it.

The end of next week never seemed so far away. What am I supposed to do in the meantime? I have to write a sermon for Sunday I guess. I have job duties and chores around the house. Still, I suspect there will be a lot of staring into space and probably a fair amount of expecting the worst, combined with a liberal dose of random, stabbing emotion. All I know is there is something there, it seems to have spread and it isn't friendly.

Even as a kid, waiting was a part of life. I'd send away for something out of the back of a comic book and it might take 2-4 months to arrive in the mailbox. MONTHS. Now, if I can't get it in a day or two, deal's off.

I also remember the afternoons when I was a teenager with cancer. Afternoons were the worst. Thank God Almighty for The Dick Van Dyke Show reruns.

I was severely sick then and wasn't able or allowed to be out in public. There was very little I could do with my afternoons and less still for which I had strength or motivation.

At night, I had the television schedule memorized. In the morning was the daily parade of doctors and nurses and blood tests. But the afternoon was a desert. A long, empty space. An 8-hour blank stare. THAT'S when you're scared: in the afternoon, because you're alone in the hospital room or on your couch at home, and the only company you have is your own thoughts and a body that's trying to kill you.

I'll post some reflections on my first bout with cancer this week. No real news until the middle of next week some time.

Until then, I guess it's back to the afternoons.

Posted by Dan at December 30, 2004 11:08 AM

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Comments

Afternoons can be some of the worst...

Keep on writing D.... Keep on....

Posted by: Cam at December 30, 2004 08:51 PM

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