If you’ve read all my posts so far, thank you! The posts, like the subject, have been pretty heavy. You might be surprised to know that not every moment of every day was sad or filled with a negative emotion. Starting early on, I experienced a lot of gratitude.
You might wonder what I was grateful for, considering my situation. Most of my gratitude, quite simply, was for people and their support and actions. You may be in that number! If you said even one kind word on Facebook, then I was grateful, and in reflection, I still am.
My gratitude first and foremost was to Jeff and my boys, Jared and Tristan. Jeff was always there for me. He went to 99% of my appointments for doctors, tests, treatments, and even one blood transfusion. Jeff helped with cooking, cleaning, managing the dog, medicine, shopping, checking on me endless times, and keeping the house quiet as needed. He even shaved my head! He gave endless amounts of emotional support. There’s no way I could ever show enough gratitude or love to him.
Tristan was home during the whole experience, a busy high school senior. He helped a lot, too, with the house, the dog and food. He’d check on me a lot. Jared did the same when he was home on winter break and in summer. Both had to experience me crying and bald. They made me laugh with a lot of success! I’m so glad they have their dad’s strength. Their love propelled me through.
My extended family was there to cheer me on with countless calls and messages and sent some very touching gifts. My two closest friends in Denton brought me lunch often and talked with me, a wonderful diversion. Others invited me out when I felt good. It all meant so much, making both my bad and good days better!
Unexpectedly, people I knew from various situations, mostly as school, sport, church, or Scout parents, reached out in various ways. I received beautiful gifts containing hats, scarfs, and mementos. I received quite a few dinners for our family as people dropped by home cooked meals or restaurant food. It made life so much easier to have ready-made meals! I was so thankful and felt blessed.
A few Facebook friends reached out to me with their own cancer stories. I hadn’t known of their experiences and it made me feel less alone and able to ask a few questions from those with shared experiences. One special gift came from a pink sister I’d never met and it connected me to her and to a nonprofit group for women with cancer. She and the group were great resources for body, mind and soul.
I prayed during my illness, asked “why me” and thanked the Lord for all the love I experienced. I appreciated every kindness shown toward me, making life cancer and treatment bearable. It was truly an amazing experience, and brought me much happiness at a difficult time. Thank you, one and all.
Lastly, I am so grateful for the wonderful doctors, nurses, and all the medical personnel and their support people for getting me through this process. They provided the best medical treatment and showed a lot of kindness.
If you’re going through a cancer journey or another difficult time, don’t forget to notice all the small and large gestures people make to help you, to comfort you, and to show you they care. I was often surprised and always touched and cheered. It would have been easy to wallow in pain and sadness and not notice the good. In the long run, it made me appreciate people more and encourage me to show more kindness toward others. I encourage you to do the same.
P.S. I’ve been trying to keep these under or around 500 words. If the one of them had to exceed that number, I’m glad it was this one on my gratitude!
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