Monday, August 30, 2010

Appreciate Your Life

Cancer....... a six letter word that is small to look at but it brings massive life changing challenges to all those who are affected.  If I were to look back at my life before cancer appeared, things would seem very simple and what I thought to be major challenges back then, were actually just minor bumps along life's pathway.

Cancer puts your life into perspective!  Even though each person who is affected by cancer has his or her own trials to bear, we need to appreciate the simple things that sometimes we don't even realize mean the most.

Last week while my husband and I were at our local cancer clinic, I couldn't help but notice two smaller children sitting alone in the waiting room.  It's not very common to see young children in that clinic, especially without adult accompaniment.  I really felt like I should go and speak to them, but at the same time, I also felt that I didn't want to intrude.  After a short time, I saw a woman and her husband walk slowly out of the doctor's office. The children instantly walked towards them and it was easy to see that the lady was their mom and that she was not feeling well.  Her very slow steps and ashen face made it quite clear that she was the one battling cancer.

My first thought was of my daughters and how they have had their own struggles from time to time dealing with their Dad's cancer.  They were teenagers when my husband was first diagnosed and adults in their twenties when he was given that terrible news of only a ninety day longevity, but despite their more mature age, naturally cancer has affected them in so many ways.  Now as I watched these two very young children hug their mom, I could barely hold back tears as I thought of what they will endure as well throughout their mom's cancer journey.  I then heard the oldest daughter, who was a mere eight or nine ask, "When is your next chemo treatment Mommy?"     Watching something like that and hearing those words from such a young child, sure made me realize just how fortunate our family is....yes, very fortunate indeed!  That young couple not only have to deal with all the trials and tribulations that cancer brings, but also they are raising two children in the midst of their challenging health issues.  Definitely not an easy task by any means.

School starts in a week, and as I watched the faces of both these young girls, my heart sank again, to think that they had been robbed in a way from having a childhood free of all that cancer brings.  Their vocabulary now includes words like chemo, nausea, treatments, MRI's, and CT's and they will await their mom's test results and ask her daily how she feels just like us adults do.  But as I thought about it a little more, I realized that they are blessed to be together.  The young mother is so very fortunate to have her children right there with her at the end of her doctor's visit for support and encouragement, which is the best kind of therapy for any cancer patient.

Putting our lives into perspective is so important.  Cancer allows each of us to do that.  No matter how difficult our journey becomes with cancer at times, we remember that there are so many others who walk more difficult roads.

We appreciate our family life everyday and never take it for granted since cancer came into it......

I trust you will also take time to appreciate yours!!


Anonymous said...

Wow, that really makes me reflect upon my life and how the simplest things should not get in the way. Very true Debbie, there are always other people who have it mush difficult then the path we have to follow.
Thank you for your words of inspiration!

karen in ottawa canada said...

eloquent as always my friend! how'd you get so smart, huh?? LOL! hugs to you & Willard, xoxo