The C Word
Cancer. We all know someone who has been affected, whether close or distant. My Poppy, my mom’s dad, died of cancer when I was young. I have vague memories of him and his suffering. My aunt had breast cancer and just recently has been cleared of it. None of it hit me as hard as the news I received this past week.
Last Monday, my Nanny, my mom’s mom, went in for minor surgery to check on something that had been going wrong. She ended up having a hysterectomy after the doctor found a small grape sized tumor in her uterus with stage II cancer. My mom called me that day to tell me the news. She told me that a biopsy was being done on the tissue and lymph nodes to get a better picture of what was going on.
I decided to go home for my days off, to be with family, to hang out. I knew there was nothing I could do, but I needed to be there. Nanny has always been strong. My family has always said how fortunate we are that she has been so strong, so healthy at 73. I enjoyed watching the Olympics with the family and hanging out around the house, not doing much, but just being there.
On Tuesday, we got the results back. Final diagnosis, stage III cancer. Aggressive. Requires radiation. But no chemotherapy.
My heart hurts. My brain hurts. I stayed strong while at home, but on the drive back up north, I let it go. I let the tears I had been holding back flow freely. I let the fears I had been holding in go. I cried for the times we had together, for the plans we had made, for the unknown.
I am still processing what this means. Nanny has to recover from her surgery before the radiation will start. Her next checkup is in early March.
The Beast has been amazing and supportive. We are hoping and praying and in the meantime, being strong and taking it one day at a time. There is no reason to dwell on the bad when there is so much good, in the past, present, and future.
It gives me get another reason to celebrate the healthiness of my body and keep striving to make it healthier.