This is humbling. I do not have cancer. My energy is returned. I went for a run and I was not tired. I wonder how much of my tiredness before was related to low iron and how much to fear. Anyhow this old boat seems to be a good metaphor for me/my life – I am working on it.
I apologize for my absence. I have been tired for several months, I have been afraid and I have been denying that I am afraid. For a long time, I said to myself that I was only afraid of screwing up the process of posting. And while it is true that I do not enjoy the technicalities of blogging, that is a deception.
I have been afraid that being tired and having pain in my arms means that I have cancer again. Tests show that my iron is low and I will receive the result of further tests in a couple of days.
I am unclear about what I do feel. Cowardly maybe?
Anyhow. I am back.
I am not sure that I really understood how I felt when I was first diagnosed. I think it was a kind of panic.
I was trying to find out exactly what was happening to me and what could happen. I did not want to do anything to my body that might effect my ability to make love.
I read that when prostate cancer moves into our bodies one of the symptoms is that our bones begin to ache. Soon after reading this, the bones in my legs began to ache. I told the radiologist about this and he scheduled an MRI. The results came back quite quickly and the results showed that there was no cancer whatsoever outside of my prostate. Immediately, the pains went away.
I think this was panic.
Not everything about my cancer was sad or scary. I still had to get up in the morning and do things. It seemed sort of funny, in a way, that while I was worried about treating my cancer, impotence and incontinence, I still had to go to the can, brush my teeth, clean the house, repair the car……
Probably this was the beginning of my going deeper into myself – deeper than being afraid or angry.
My experience of cancer brought with it, among other things, greater peace and strength.
Poison. Betrayal. Despair. When I wrote this poem, I was flailing about. It seemed so unjust that my body, and in particular, that part of my body which had, throughout my life, brought unimaginable physical and spiritual pleasure, would now possibly be the source of my death.
If you find this poem and my thoughts of value, I invite you to revisit my blog and read about my book Ripped Out: One Man’s Journey Surviving Prostate Cancer. You may download an e-copy for free or, if you wish purchase a printed copy for $14.95 plus shipping.
Please consider posting your thoughts on this blog. Hearing how others have or are coping with their cancer or the cancer of someone they love will help me on my journey and I believe it will be helpful to others.
Beginning with my diagnosis 2006, I began to write everyday about what was happening to me and how I was reacting. Eventually, I transposed my daily journal writings into a book called Ripped Out: One Man’s Journey Surviving Prostate Cancer.
Writing everyday saved me from despair. Pulling those writings into a book was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.
Most of my daily comments took the form of a poem. The one on the right, ‘Ripped Out’, gave voice to what I had done. I somehow felt, in part, that I had let myself down. It felt very good to say sorry to my body.
The whole experience was difficult for me to understand – complicated. Writing the poem somehow let it all out and helped me to move on.
I would very much like to hear from others of their (your) experience. Did it feel like part of you had been ripped out?