Just something that has been bugging me a little lately. I have had the reaction from some people that because I am getting involved in hospice and I’m on morphine I am ‘giving up’.
They think I should hold on to hope that I am going to be cured and that to do anything else is being negative.
I dont believe ‘positive thoughts’ cure cancer. I do believe positive but realistic thoughts help you fight cancer by putting your body in a less stressed state, and depending on the aggressiveness, stage and biology of your cancer you will be able to at least knock it back and in a lot of cases achieve remission or cure.
I will have been dealing with ‘Gertrude’ for 4 years this coming August. I honestly believe that if I was going to be cured of ‘Gertrude’ it would have happened by now.
We dont have the money or the time to try unproven and expensive alternative therapies and being a girl with a science background I need to have the things I try backed up by science. We have chosen not to spend $5000 dollars amonth for tykerb which is not publically funded in New Zealand because there was no guarantee that it would work at this stage of the proceedings and if we were spending that sort of money we would have no life (we would have had to eat only the the most budget unhealthy foods, no trips to the beach to recharge my spiritual batteries etc, no uni studies, no helping to pay for OD’s wedding) it might have kept me alive a little longer but would it be a life worth living?
I still hold out a small amount of hope for a spontaneous miraculous remission but also believe at this stage it would be exactly that – miraculous.
That does not mean I am giving up, if I was giving up I wouldn’t be trying taxol, I wouldnt be carrying on with my uni studies and staying active and involved in all the other things I can manage to do.
By getting involved with hospice, looking at funeral planning, to me is just a natural way of getting organised. We need to have things in place especially around YD and I relax more myself knowing things are organised. It is all about lowering my stress levels and allowing myself to enjoy whatever time I have got left be it 6 months, 2 years or whatever. I can make the plans, get organised then relax knowing they are already in place.
I have a friend that should be on morphine because the amount of pain she is in but she cant get passed that psychological barrier that it has around it . I take less morphine than I could because I prefer to feel a little pain and be able to gauge when it is getting better and worse and not feel too doped out. Taking the level I do allows me to function and live a reasonably normal life go to uni etc. Compared to my friend that at one stage was in so much pain she admitted she couldnt think straight.
I think what really annoys me is that people buy into the rah-rah survior myth so much that whether you are a cancer patient or part of their support system, friends and family, there is a barrier to being realisitic.
Someone who said their friend with mets wasnt giving up and was going to fight it with everything they’ve got when I said about where I was – what do you think I have been doing for more than the last 3 and a half years . Or someone who said to my face ‘dont give up, you have got to believe the chemo will cure you. dont believe what the drs tell you.’ I’ve done my own research and I have also had friends with exactly the same thing as me, I know that at this stage it is not cure it is control.
By denying that I will probably die from this is not helpful to me, it is denying me the right to face my own reality and make peace with it the best way I know how.