Connections, Melanoma and Sarcoma

Half Way There


Light when it strikes a prism splits into many colors.  We are all faced with life’s challenges that shape how we face our daily lives. How does cancer affect the mind of the person afflicted? How does cancer shape the lives of those who survive it? They are clearly not the same as when they started. They just missed death because they were forced to entertain its existence and question their mortality. They rose above the fear of loss and planted their feet firmly on the ground and walked the journey being asked of them. Many struggled, many questioned. In this journey, how do I fit in?

Besides wanting to be a garbage man I have often thought I could be a comedian. I only come alive in front of my patients. I feel the stage, the connectivity and the ability to find in them their strength, harnessing it to help them fight. How do I write to make me sound funny? To relive the moments that I connect with my patients, throwing jokes and fun statements to keep their morale up so that they can clear the hurdles that stand in their way. 

Today my patient cried and giggled. She was half way there. A treatment with a good outcome but very long nonetheless. When I walked into the room she sat hidden behind the curtain calling out that she was not crying. I could hear the choke in her voice. I pulled the curtain back and started my act.  I pulled the stool in the room and sat close reaching inside of me to find any word that would make her laugh. Comments on my beard that I was attempting to grow, on why she did not bring her cat with her and how her brother too tries to make her smile. Between tears and laughs we reformed the bond. I could see her pick herself up from falling down and saying ok I am ready for the chemotherapy. I thought when she survives this and moves on, will she remember how many laughs we had? Or would that be a forgotten memory? 

When I see my patients survive their disease, these laughs that helped them through tough times solidify a trust in me that make me believe I do make a difference. I hear it enough times and I share with you honestly and openly that I too forget. I forget their struggle, their fight.  Perhaps it is the joy of walking in and telling them that they are still disease free and that they are winners that makes me forget. I see in them a wisdom that was not there when they started, a strength that I know makes them face life differently and knowledge that they just beat cancer. 

Why would I want to remember how they struggled? When they are truly the winners.

Mo

 

 

 

 

 

 

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6 thoughts on “Half Way There

  1. Claire Barnhouse says:

    Mo,
    I read this today and I see myself in that room hearing you tell me the same things… Disease free.. I know with you in my corner I can beat this beast…I know I have the right doctor and staff to help me.. I love reading these blogs every week.. It really helps me get through the long weeks of waiting until I see my amazing doctor of science.. Thank you again.
    Claire (your #1 fan)

  2. Roxanne says:

    Important conversations so necessary to the soul, that you touch with your words.. thank you for caring enough to take the time to put your feelings and experiences to language that we can all share in your gift.

  3. RoxAnne says:

    Oh my, you do make a difference in this world with each and every patient you touch, as well as their loved ones. Thank you for how much you care! Together, we are the winners!

  4. Jackie Bailey says:

    Mo, if only we could all be as wise as you! God has blessed us by your presence. Thank you is all we can say. God bless you!

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