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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Cleaning house

I decided how I would best like to mark the 5th year since diagnosis - I am chucking all books and informative items received from organizations during that first year*. At times after I was first diagnosed, it was as if I had been in a car accident and the lawyers were chasing me to catch my case. Livestrong. SPOHNC. American Cancer Society. They all had 'found' me (through my great friends as well as hospital connections, I imagine), and filled up my mailbox with notebooks, recipe books, 'how to cope' pamphlets, etc. They did so very much for my outlook when the days were very dark. I could go to the information resources (remember, I wasn't using the web to search my stuff at that time) and find tidbits that helped. Well, I am on the other side of that initial period, and don't need to keep those things around. I may be short-sighted, but if/when the cancer comes back to the point I need to deal with it, it won't be like the first time. Oh, there will be the great unknown - heck, we have that EVERY day. But I have identified my information pathways and the 'go to' folks that will be much better than pamphlets and notebooks. Maybe it is like the difference between having the first and second baby?

I again thank my great friends, wonderful family, and amazing extended librarian network for the cards, emails, flowers, jokes, and even a huge box of Archie McPhee treasures during my treatment weeks. Mail comes to my house in the late afternoon, and after I would nap a bit (resting helps the body heal, and healing during radiation is a must), I would go out to the mailbox and find something nearly every day. What a mood lifter! If you have a friend or family member that is going through any rough patch, grab that funny card you see the next time you go to the grocery store and mail it. It has power.

*And if you think it is wasteful for me to chuck the items rather than share with someone newly diagnosed - the items all have copyright dates of 2005 and older, not the most recent dates in the scheme of cancer care and information, and this librarian cannot pass potentially outdated information on with good conscience. I trust that anyone newly diagnosed will gather their fresh crop of informative items.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello Cheeky,

What a powerful way to spend number Five. Funny how things changed in just five years. I received not one item from the cancer society. I did receive cards and gifts from friends and family.

However, I didn't get to rest. I had a baby to tend to and an hour drive to and from radiation five days a week, with an infant...As well as a husband who did nothing but complain and expect everyone to feel sorry for him.

If I hadn't had cancer I probably would still be married to the jerk. So just one more thing to add to the plus pile for getting ACC.

I love my life, warts/scars and all. I pray you find the all the joys in yours as well.


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