The following chain of events makes up the harder thing I have ever endured in my life: Diagnosis of non-hodgkins lymphoma, 3 types of unsuccessful chemotherapy, an experimental transplant and now survivorship. I was so certain throughout it all that if I could just get to the other side everything would be ok. I would be able to sleep through the night, I wouldn't need so many pills, I wouldn't think about my cancer every single day.
I suppose I should say here that I am truly grateful to be here today and recognize that it feels funny to complain about anything when not that many months ago a number of very smart doctors didn't think I'd make it. But guilt aside, being a cancer survivor is hard work. It is hard to see the scars all over my body, it is hard to take the almost countless pills everyday, it is hard to continue to get bloodwork even though my veins are basically shot, it is hard to sleep through the night, it is hard to remember that a cold can just be a cold, and it is hard to know that I put so many loving and caring people through so much.
I look forward to the day that I wake up in the morning (after sleeping through the whole night) and the first thing I think of isn't cancer. I look forward to the day when a trip to the doctor doesn't require deep breathing exercises and sometimes medication. I look forward to the day when I can explain the last 2 years to my daughter so that they stop being something scary to her. Basically, I look forward to feeling normal again.
I do not need nor want to go back to the way I was prior to diagnosis but a sense of normalcy would be nice. A small sense that the whole world won't come crashing down in an instant. Not so sure that is too much to ask.