A lot of times, when I was in the midst of all the hell we were going through I wanted to read about life after cancer. And I had a hard time finding it.
A lot of people quit writing. I swore I wouldn’t be that off-treament family. But then, here I am with months of nothing.
We’ve moved on with our lives. Our wish trip came through and it was truly fabulous. Our daughter was so happy. And she got an opportunity to meet some other kids that were sick like her.
Yesterday as we were bopping over the hills in our SUV she said, “mama these hills make me feel like I did when I was sick.” And it wasn’t a negative comment. Simply sharing that the feeling she had in her tummy is how she felt then.
But I didn’t know. I cried. I had no idea that her tummy felt queasy when she was sick. She never mentioned it. Not once. She went through it alone.
Oh yes, we were all there for her, and with her every step that we could be. But she was alone. She is the one who will have to, at some point, tell future doctors, friends and lovers that she had leukemia. That she survived . Not me. Not her dad. We can move on from some aspects of it. She will forever be a survivor.
Our family survived the traumatic years of leukemia treatments, until February of this year. Then we broke apart. My husband and I have separated and are doing what we can to raise the children with as much peace as possible.
So, life after cancer can have so many unexpected outcomes. Additionally, it is as if while she was on-treatment I stuffed a bunch of feelings. And now that she’s made it over a year off treatment. Some of those hidden feelings are popping out. Nothing specific.. just feelings of fear that want to be released.
I was so afraid. Every day. Fear so great that I would lose her. That I would do something wrong. That something I wouldn’t be able to handle would come up. But at the time, I had to pay attention to what the moment was.. BUT now looking back I have a bit of a safe distance. It’s behind me you see, because I am moving on.