Sunday, January 13, 2008

Reality and Hope

Being realistic and hopeful might seem like a paradox when you have cancer, but that’s how I’d describe myself. I need to explain this because I think some people confuse facing reality with giving up.

There’s a strong possibility that I will die sometime soon. The recurrence of my cancer so soon after treatment and its spread to the lungs, bones, and liver in such a short time period suggest that I may not last through this year. That’s hard for my family and friends to accept. Think how much harder it is for ME to accept. But I DO accept it – not as my fate, but as a possibility.

There’s also a possibility that I’ll beat the odds and keep my body going for many more years to come. It’s not probable, but I believe it’s possible.

But that doesn’t mean I’m going to live today as if I had a lifetime left. With the odds stacked against me, it would be irresponsible of me not to prepare myself, my family and friends.

People often say you should live each day as if it were your last. Now think. If you knew you had exactly ONE day left to live, how would you spend that day? Enjoying a picnic by the river with your dearest loved ones? I doubt it. You’d spend that day in a wild panic about all you wanted to do and say to the people you care about. You’d probably be so panicked and terrified, you wouldn’t be able to do anything at all. Most people would probably cry their way through that last day.

I don’t want to get to that point. I want to be ready, mentally and otherwise, for the day my doctors tell me there’s nothing more they can do for me. And even then, it won’t be over. I’ll keep fighting with whatever I have left. I’ve heard too many miracle stories to think it can’t happen for me.

But getting ready for death doesn’t mean I’m getting ready to die. We don’t expect to get into a car crash every time we get in the car with our kids, but we put them in car seats just the same.

So I’d like my family and friends to know that I’m still in this fight and I will be until the very end. It ain’t over ‘til it’s over.

3 comments:

Marge said...

Just want to say that I think of you all the time and love you gobs. It's amazing to see all the comments being posted on your blog. You clearly have made a huge impact on a lot of lives.
No surprise there.

Always,
Marge

Annie said...

Shin,You are beautiful and shine in every way. You are a teacher and are inspiring us all to find the best in ourselves and each other.
A big hug to you,

Annie

Anonymous said...

You're amazing, I love you, keep fighting and let me know if you need ANYTHING. Mel xxxxx