It is now nine days since my wife underwent surgery for a mass located in her pelvis.
It is nine days that we have dealt with the realization that she has been diagnosed with Stage IV Endometrial Cancer. For my wife, it has been nine days of soul searching, depression, anger, frustration, sadness, fear and acceptance of a dire prognosis. My wife is a daughter of a bona fide rocket scientist; having some of the same attitudes as her father. Some of these personality traits include arrogance, stubbornness, high intelligence and confidence. She has a lot of knowledge about cancer, and its toll on the body, because she works on the Oncology Ward in a major hospital where we live with nurses and doctors. She is getting around the house, shuffling more than walking. She watches television, and it is evident that she is bored out of her mind.
It is nine days since my wife and I received her diagnosis, and I have been a wreck at times. In the week that my wife was in the hospital, my schedule consisted of:
- Taking the morning to research my wife’s cancer.
- Looking into any or all methods that are available to increase her chances of survival
- Contacting out-of-state hospitals that specialize in a combination of holistic and scientific medicine.
- Calling my friends who are doctors, to see if they know anyone in the area who looks at holistic therapies that can complement what she will be going through.
- Taking time out to cry (out of pity for myself).
- Taking time out to become frustrated with her current stage (due to her not going in to be checked in the past).
- Taking time out to become angry (at the fact that there is no bona fide cure for her type of cancer…though it has a higher survival rate than most other cancers).
In these nine days, my final stage of dealing with the flood of emotions that have hit me, have settled on dogged determination.
I am determined to see my wife through this disease. Though it has not left her debilitated or weak, her knowledge of cancer is much wider than mine. She believes in treating the illness, rather than the entire body. So my objective (for now) is to “woo her” to follow my thought processes. I am determined to see her lose the weight she needs to lose in order to prevent recurrence of this particular disease.
In these nine days, I have found a cathartic path regarding whether or not my wife will survive her curse. In these nine days, I have become a new person…angrier, more determined, not so reliant on everyone else for help. In these nine days, I have taught myself about the detriments of my wife’s condition, and focused on the here and now of what we can do for my wife.
In these nine days, I have found a stronger love for my wife that will not succumb to the ravages of her disease. My determination may or may not see us through; that is for a higher power to decide. But in the days to come, I will be ever vigilant for any ways that I can support my wife in the weeks and months to come.
In these nine days, I have learned that we have 5 years to ensure that she survives her cancer. I will make certain that she counts herself among those who have survived their life’s challenge.