If a Milestone Falls in the Forest, Does it Still Make a Sound? (Update #14)

If a Milestone Falls in the Forest, Does it Still Make a Sound? (Update #14)

Five years ago today, I checked into the hospital for an out-patient biopsy that was supposed to be NBD and woke up to the worst news of my life. In general, I don’t mark my “cancerversaries.” I prefer to reserve…

Update # 13 -- Straddling Two Worlds

Update # 13 — Straddling Two Worlds

I had a PET scan and brain MRI this past week and everything came back clear. No signs of metastases anywhere. I give credit to my anxious pre-scan nightmares, which are obviously super helpful, plus Samantha’s expert prayer skilz (to…

Update #12 -- It’s Quiet Uptown

Update #12 — It’s Quiet Uptown

I went to see Hamilton yesterday. It was kind of a fluke. I felt a bit badly when I scored seats for our family. I wanted to see the show, but not as desperately as I knew many others did…

Update #11- The Messy Middle (aka Screw the New Normal)

Update #11- The Messy Middle (aka Screw the New Normal)

I’ve come to really hate the phrase, “my new normal.” It implies that this is a situation a person can adjust to, as if one can settle in and get comfortable with living with a Stage IV lung cancer diagnosis….

Update #10: Shi(f)t Happens

Update #10: Shi(f)t Happens

I was struck by a quote that my friend Samantha posted on Facebook a few weeks ago: “You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.” I’ve been building up to shifting my…

Update #9 -- It Never Ends

Update #9 — It Never Ends

So. this is a weird place to be. I just had a PET scan and it was good. I mean, not perfect. Radiologists aren’t fond of unqualified perfect reports. They’re halfway to lawyer-ville with their CYA language. So while my…

Update #8 -- "You Don't Look Like You Have Cancer"

Update #8 — “You Don’t Look Like You Have Cancer”

But, I do. ______________________________ I was so tempted to end my post there. Because sometimes it’s that simple. Cancer doesn’t always look like a person in a head scarf. Cancer often looks just like you. Cancer looks like me. I…

Update #7 - DON’T LOOK DOWN

Update #7 – DON’T LOOK DOWN

Having advanced cancer feels a lot like walking a tightrope. Creeping so carefully, trying to balance on the slimmest of margins, never any real chance to let down your guard. Every so often a gust blows, but there’s no predicting…

Update #6 11/24/14

Update #6 11/24/14

Photo by Paul McCoubrie MRI Results If you are a hypochondriac, cancer might be just your thing. No more poo-pooing symptoms or brushing off complaints; when you have cancer, doctors pay attention. Of course, it’s a little late, after months…

Update #5 - When Progression is not Progress

Update #5 – When Progression is not Progress

Progression. It sounds like it should be a good thing, but it’s not. I’m having bad flashbacks to an accounting class where the instructor kept insisting credits were bad and debits good. Huh? I heard on the radio yesterday that…