Sunday, December 26, 2010

Life without cancer - what would it be like.

Is my husband right? I deny this. He might possibly claim I over did things in the past few days. I am not going to say he's right but I am tired. I am achy. I am exhausted. I am lying around in bed doing a lot of nothing. I have some stuff to take care of today - laundry, wasting time on line, etc.

This dealing with my health is wearing me down. But then I stopped to think, if I didn't have cancer, what would my health be like? I mean my thyroid cancer, aside from lifelong vigilance, has left me with a daily thyroid supplement. Has that contributed to my osteopenia issues or not? It depends which medical study you read.

Has my breast cancer treatment caused additional health issues? Well the surgery caused lymphedema and a sore shoulder. Chemo has left me with slightly low red cell counts. I take daily Femara for the next two years.

But would I still have back issues? They aren't related to cancer. I mean I assume my disks would have decided to degenerate without any cancer contribution. This is what causes my pain, exhaustion, fatigue, aches, etc. And its the reason I had to give up so many activities. My ankle still would have been sprained - I can't blame lack of coordination on cancer. Tennis elbow is not related to cancer - but possibly contributed to by over use on the computer which might be a tiny bit contributed to my blog which is the result of cancer. But I can't blame it. I would probably be working more instead of blogging as much and that would have done it too. My partially torn ACL from skiing and multiple fibroids which resulted in a hysterectomy would also have happened and are not related to cancer. Its nice when I go to the doctor and am told that its not related to cancer.

Would my life have been different without cancer? I am not thinking in terms of the 'woulda, shoulda, coulda's' that would be regrets. But what would my health be like if I erased cancer from it?

I have felt tethered to a bottle of thyroid hormones for nearly 30 years. How far can one travel on a 90 day supply? Would I have joined the Peace Corp and gone to Africa for a few years? Or maybe not. Now I am not tethered to one bottle but to five prescription bottles and have to get refills regularly. I have tried to reduce my trips to the pharmacy to once every two weeks instead of every week something always seems to interfere. Never mind an extended trip overseas... Travel now involves zip lock bags of pills in my carry on luggage.

Cancer may have slowed me down but its not the only cause of my health problems. I still plan on traveling. In 2011, we are attending a family reunion down in Maryland and head to Iceland in September. Cancer is not going to run my life. But sometimes I do wonder what life would be like without it.

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