Any person who gets diagnosed with cancer waits to here the words “remission” come out of their oncologists mouth.
I remember the day just like it was yesterday, which is saying a lot because my memory is shit. I remember exactly what I was doing before I went to my appointment and I remember what I was wearing.
There we sat in that horrific room with ugly curtains. She began to tell me that there was no more evidence of cancer on my liver. I could have cried I was so happy. I thought it was over. I had beat my nasty ass cancer that no one has ever heard of! I could put this behind me and move on with my career and my life.
But, I was wrong. A week later I would come home every day from work and worry myself sick that I still had cancer and that they were missing something. That the scans were wrong, that the tumors were too small to see. Basically, I was coming up with any excuse for myself to still have cancer. I was not fully at ease with the term remission I tried everything to get my mind off of it, but it was always in the back of my mind. I had this voice saying “KAYLA. YOU STILL HAVE EHE.” I couldn’t even enjoy “remission.” Which I’m not really sure I would have known how, so I guess that’s one positive of not being in remission? (Always looking for a positive)
The worst part about all of that – it’s the truth. About 2 months later I was still sick and losing weight. I had accepted the fact before my scans (scheduled a month early) that I still had cancer.
And…I was right. A few days before Christmas, I met with my oncologist. In the same small tiny ass room. Whoever was the interior designer for the Med Center should be fired. Yup, I said it. She told me that there had been “problems” with my MRI scans. That the tumors that showed up on my latest scan have always been there.
*The problem: My tumors play hide and go seek with MRI scans (If you’ve been a frequent reader, I’ve called my tumors little bitches before..this is another reason why). Solution: I now have to have CT scans instead. Yay for more radiation exposure! Bring it on!*
All I really wanted to do at this point was scream loud profanities. Yikes. I should get better at this. How could this happen? Instead I almost laughed. Like any other time in my life because yes, yes this would happen to me. My remission would be a sham – a total joke.
So now, I live with cancer. Which is still a hard concept to grasp. I have had a few treatments and a surgery but due to the size a location of some of the tumors, there is nothing they can do for me (right now).
I may never hear the words “remission” ever again. All I can hope for is to continue hearing the words “stable” and “no growth.”
I haven’t completely come to peace with living with cancer but it’s getting better. I’ve tried very hard to not let it get in the way of my every day life but some times it’s inevitable. It’s become a part of me, which is okay. It’s a part of my life and that’s that.