My one year mark is approaching very quickly. Next week, as a matter of fact. I’ve been all over the place emotionally. I’m grateful, of course. Over 25 percent of metastatic kidney cancer patients don’t even make it this far. So you know, my perception of gratitude is skewed these days. But there’s been a lot of anger and sadness on my part too. A lot. It’s almost like I’m reliving how I felt in the initial moments and weeks after my diagnosis all over again. Fun stuff.
You’ve heard me talk a lot about gratitude, positivity, trusting in God, and all those things. And there has been and remains a lot of that. But there’s a heaping load of anger and depression too. There are times when I feel like taking a baseball bat to something just to physically get out just how angry I am about all of this. Literally, I just want to get a baseball bat and whack the absolute crap out of something because I can’t tell you how completely and utterly unjust all of this feels. This isn’t my life, right? It can’t be. Someone has clearly been playing a sick joke on me for the past year.
It’s why I know people mean well, but those “Cancer can’t” memes I see floating around online just make me so angry. You don’t think cancer can eat away peace? Oh, but it can. Tell that to me at 3 am when I can’t sleep because I’m consumed with worry. Cancer can’t destroy confidence? Ask me that every time I look at my abdomen, which looks like the doctors started performing an autopsy and sewed me back up.
I think there’s a tendency on people who aren’t directly impacted by cancer to make it “cutesy” to make it less scary. I’m sorry to break it to you, but there’s nothing cute about cancer. It is hell. Truthfully. The surgery was hell. The recovery was/is hell. The treatment can be hell some days. I do a good job of putting my game face on. Maybe sometimes too good of a job.
Some days, I can find the humor in it. Some days, I can’t. It’s the same reason why I hate when people say that people who die from cancer “lost his/her battle.” If you think cancer is a battle, you are sadly mistaken. It is an all out war. They didn’t lose their battles. They were freaking warriors.
So. Sorry, y’all. I’ll be inspirational next time. But this time, I felt like you needed some raw honesty.
Cancer is hell. It just is, and it’s OK to accept that it is.