Life After Cancer is to Live and so I Did


When I received a diagnosis of colon cancer, my priorities had to change drastically.

Image of a patient talking with a doctor.

"Cancer is just scary, puzzling and yes, at first, inconvenient."

And so I did!

Today I am diagnosed with the big C

My brain goes on a protective spree

The doc is providing an explanation,

But my brain takes me on a small vacation.

Chemo starts on Wednesday echoes in my head

Wednesday is when? What day is this? One of seven ahead.

It’s the day things change, it’s cancer, I think through the mist

This shouldn’t be hard, but the unknowns are now my list.

My brain jumps back into gear

“Chemo will last several months” I hear.

I need to go to Texas for my niece’s wedding

“Not this year” you’ll be here with cancer cells shedding!

But my class reunion is in June

Shake this cough, losing weight …and is that the cancer? Boom!

I can not believe it, that’s when I cry —

priorities change with cancer identified!

You can meet it in many ways

You can pretend, deny, go shopping it’s all OK.

You can “poor me” until there is nothing left to say.

Until you realize you have but one task!

Bad reaction to meds, can you come back Thursday?

Sure, any day, any time, earned trust goes a long way.

Oh, wow with your attitude, you’re going to get through

“Why Me” Sounds good, but not the thing to do.

Cancer is just scary, puzzling and yes, at first, inconvenient.

The process IS life transforming, life changing, opens my eyes, my mind.

Every day!

Every way!

And yet here I am bald, tired, fighting the good fight

What more could it do? I will come ‘round right!

And, finally, it settles into…

Life is to live…

Get on with it!

…And so I did!

I believe I wrote this poem for my peace of mind and to celebrate the successful journey through diagnosis, chemotherapy and survival that I took/am taking.

This post was written and submitted by Patsy Sherrill Madden. The article reflects the views of Madden and not of CURE®. This is also not supposed to be intended as medical advice.

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