Brain Cancer Rant
So there’s this article that people have been posting on Facebook recently about this woman with brain cancer, and it has really left Al and I baffled. The woman was originally diagnosed with a grade 2 astrocytoma, same kind of tumor that I have. Her doctor told her she had 10 more years to live. Unfortunately, her tumor progressed quickly to a grade 4 glioblastoma and her doctor told her she had 18 months to live, so she decided to have euthanasia on November 1- the day after her husband’s birthday (they got married last year like Al & me).
So people keep posting the article and saying how strong she is and how they admire her. And I’m like… What the heck? I don’t understand how that is strong or admirable. What if in the next 18 months they discover a cure or more effective treatment for brain cancer? Or what if she’s not a statistic? She won’t know. Smh. It pissed me off when I read it. I mean, obviously euthanasia is her choice, but I just thought it was so stupid that she was being praised for it. (I still don’t understand the thought process behind it, but I’m not pissed anymore lol.) She’s not even sick or doing badly yet, so to me she’s basically just deciding to commit suicide, giving up without even trying. I will fight as long as I can to be here… with my husband, my son, and the rest of our family.
I have had this thing since I was 14, or at least started having symptoms from it at 14. Who knows how long it has actually been there? So I’ve been living with this for 14 years. Statistically speaking, I should have been dead several years ago from this tumor. But I’m still here. In this journey, I’ve met so many people who have just kept living.. My pastor had a grade 4 glioblastoma. “Should have died” within 18 months. It has been 8 years, and the tumor hasn’t grown back. A woman from my support group had one in 1998. Was given like two years to live, yet the tumor still never grew back. And several other people I’ve met.
I have only know that this was cancer for 3 and a half years; my first doctors were idiots and misdiagnosed my tumor. Until I was 24, I just thought that there was swelling in my brain. So it has definitely been hard dealing with thoughts that I was selfish for getting married and bringing this into Al’s life, or that I was selfish for having kids because statistics say I won’t be here long enough to watch them grow, or thoughts that I will ultimately die a painful death from brain cancer. It took me a long time to be okay. And reading this article, it just furthered this great, new belief I’ve adopted that statistics can’t dictate my life. It doesn’t matter what statistics or doctors say. I know that God has the final say.
I’ve met way too many people who have outlived statistics, and whose doctors were wrong. Heck, my own doctors told me that surgery might not work because of scar tissue and that there was a risk of stroke and paralysis. And when my surgeon got 90% of the tumor out, they told me that I should have chemo because radiation might not work. They said chemo might not work either. But here I am a year and a half later… and the tumor is completely gone.
There is no way to tell if all of the cancer cells were killed during radiation, which is why I have to keep getting checked to make sure the tumor didn’t grow back from remaining cancer cells. But I do know that giving up is not an option. I choose to keep living and enjoying what I have now- not living my life afraid of what might happen one day.
Anyhow, rant over. lol. I’m gonna get back to cutting out these decorations for the baby shower this weekend. I was supposed to finish unpacking these last two boxes of clothes today, but there’s always tomorrow. lol. Ta-ta for now!