If you were told the terrible news that you have terminal cancer, how would you react, what would you be acting like, given that news? Well, I have been given such news…
A Cancer Diagnosis
I was diagnosed with a terminal cancer about six years ago now I think. My Orthopedic Surgeon didn’t really make too much of a fuss about the scan findings. He said that this thing I had, was “to do with cancer, it is “Multiple Myeloma” but with the amount that I had in my body at that time, I was in his words:” Sitting on the fence” and “this may never really happen to you Jeff”
We never really thought too much about the cancer diagnosis at the time
It was strange; the specialist didn’t really make too much of a big thing over it back then, just that I had to keep getting a six monthly blood test. I carried along with life as normal, and almost forgot about it all. Getting the blood test became just another thing for me, because my health has been crazy, ever since my Lumbar Discectomy back in 2002. Things took a turn for the worse in April 2017 just 18 months ago, when I had this terrible back and chest pain.
Terminal Cancer Diagnosis
I had lesions all throughout my body
I went to the doctor with this horrible pain, and after a scan at the hospital that afternoon it was found I had Lesions (Tumors) throughout my body, on my skull, neck, spine, legs, knee. I was told, along with my beautiful family, that I was terminally ill, by my oncologist. She was very blunt about it: “this will kill you Jeff, or it may be one of the many infections like Pneumonia that will get you first.” This was a terminal cancer diagnosis.
It was a different Xmas for me, receiving a Stem Cell Transplant
Xmas 2017 was different for me. I spent it up in Christchurch hospital getting a Stem Cell Transplant. I was in Hospital care for 5 weeks. The staff at the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit were fabulous. I couldn’t have wished for better care. During my stay there I was close to death on 2 occasions, but with their expert care, they got me through.
Pain is eased by large portions of morphine and methadone
I am home now still very sick and unwell. Many mornings I still feel nauseous. I am still so very sore throughout my body, mainly in my back and hip regions, and I’m on many medications, with morphine and methadone making up a large part of them. I’m struggling to walk as each movement builds up the pain in my different regions of my body. It’s when I’m in so much pain like this, that I realise still, that I’m terminally ill. Sometimes I forget, I am, just for a while.
There are some good thing’s about being terminally ill
The good thing about all this (yes, there is something good about being terminally ill with cancer) is that this has brought my wife and I, a lot closer together. We don’t argue, because being with each other is so precious. Tomorrow, or today even, may be the day I die. Life is too precious to be arguing over silly things. Treat each moment as it may be your last.
Be observant for what is around you, think how lucky you are
I look at everything around me now with so much more love for what we have. The mountains, the sheep and their lambs. The pristine lakes and the native bush surrounding them. I watch ducklings swimming whilst the mother watches over each one. These are the things, the simple things in life that I would have once taken for-granted.
Live life as if you were given a terminal diagnosis. You will love life more.