• ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    I've been going out in public more and I have experienced many people I don't know asking "Why do you wear that bandanna?" or "Do you have cancer?" I guess I would rather have them ask me directly than whisper behind my back HOWEVER......The last thing I want to do when I go out to escape and forget this illness, is have a 20 min conversation with a stranger about how every person they know with cancer.

    Am I wrong or rude for wanting to just say..."Do you really think this is what I want to talk about with a stranger in a public place when I'm obviously out with friends? Have some respect and just say 'good luck'" I'm sure it's just their being uncomfortable but it really offends me to the point where I just want to go right back home.

    1 Comment
    • attypatty's Avatar
      attypatty

      Dear Toughenough:
      I hear you - I still get some of the same thing, even though my hair is growing back, enough to have some fringe stick out of my hats. But it's kind of like being pregnant - everyone feels free somehow to come up and pat you on the belly. I think it's human nature so I try not to take offense. I look 'em right in the eye and say, "I am in chemotherapy (now I can say I just finished chemotherapy) so I certainly hope I don't have cancer - that's the whole point of going through this. Now isn't it a lovely day? I hope enjoy it as much I as do." That usually cuts off conversation or at least directed into a positive direction. There is nothing worse than standing there listening to third-hand horror stories. If someone insisted, I would just politely excuse myself and walk away. If someone was really rude, try this line: "Did you know that because I have had treatment, statistically, there is less chance that I have cancer in my body than you do."
      Fight On,
      Attypatty

      about 9 years ago
  • ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    Second round of chemo starts today. TAXIL IS NOT my friend. My hair just started coming back too...... :'(

    1 Comment
    • Statto's Avatar
      Statto

      Agreed! I did taxil 5 days ago and the bone aching is so bad for me. Do you have that? It's like the worst arthritis pain ever. I've been taking pain pills just to get some relief....and I hate having to take pain pills.

      about 9 years ago
  • ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    Well Relay is complete and my speech was a success I guess. It felt good however I was suffering from HORRIBLE nausea and had to cut a lot out:,(. If your interested in seeing it msg me at doodle10869 at G mail and I'll be happy to share the link to YouTube.
    Thanks for the support.

    1 Comment
    • attypatty's Avatar
      attypatty

      I knew this would end up on YouTube! And you thought I was just being silly. Can you post the link here? If not, can you email it to me?
      Attypatty

      about 9 years ago
  • ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    I thought you could relate and use a laugh so ......On the lighter side here's my
    WHAT NOT TO SAY TO A CANCER PATIENT OR YOU MAY HEAR…
     “Are you going to lose your hair?”
    “That’s your first concern? I’m doing fine thanks.”
     “Are you going to get sick?”
    ”No they are just going to inject me with poison and there couldn’t possibly be any sickness related to that.”
     “I would absolutely DIE if I lost my hair and was bald.”
    ”You aren't inconsiderate at all!! If I chose to keep my hair I will die. When you pick yourself back up let me know how you feel about it now?” .
     “You know what you have to do….”,
    “I’m sure my Dr. doesn’t so please tell me.”
     “My mom cured hers with drinking her own pee.”
    “Honestly there is just no comment for that one.
     “Can I feel your lump?”
    “You may be feeling your own lump you keep talking stupid”

    My two personal favorites are…
     “My aunt had it and it came back 3 times. She’s dead now.”

    ”REALLY??? Thanks for that! How about telling me the story about the relative who beat it the first go-round and lived happily ever after K?”

    MY NUMBER ONE and quite frankly there are too many people who say this it amazes me.

     “Cancer…that sucks!!!! You know, there is a cure the government is hiding from us. Seriously I saw it on the internet”
    “I know…I saw that people who believe everything they see on the internet actually get first seats on the 12-12-12 starship to Mars before the world comes to an end.”

    7 Comments
    • Statto's Avatar
      Statto

      Ok I officially LOVE you. I have the same sense of humor. This made me laugh so hard.

      One of my favorites is when I see people and they say "oh you seem to be so strong going through this, you look great!

      Ummm yeah because when I feel like crap or have my "cry days" I dont leave the house!

      about 9 years ago
    • ToughEnough's Avatar
      ToughEnough

      Awwww I know what you mean. Whenever someone is getting ready to say it my friends stop them and say "she may not be at her fighting capability but stop what you're saying or she's going to start swinging" lol. People are learning.....lol

      about 9 years ago
    • Mandi75's Avatar
      Mandi75

      Great post! I too totally laughed out loud. People really just don't get it unless they have experienced it. My favorite is a coworker guy who said he just can't figure out how I am doing it. He said he just couldn't. So I told him well the alternative is death so you just pull from deep within and just do it.

      about 9 years ago
  • ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    Secretly a friend took me sky diving!!! Believe me when I say that if on Aril 13th it was offered to me I never would have went. Afterwards when I told family & friends, everyone seemed to say “What were you thinking? What if something happened to you?” I interpreted that to say…
    “It’s ok to suffer and fight for your life with tears, pain and loneliness with the chance that you may die in the end. It is not ok however to choose to live for 15 amazingly life affirming moments with the largest smile since you began your fight because you may die in the end”
    TO YOU I SAY….
    “We all wake every day with the chance of dying and if I have to suffer along with that chance, I refuse do it through tears and loneliness. I choose to conquer all I can while I can and I choose to live out my dreams. If you choose to stand beside me and dream along, you will get to see me do it with a smile. You see, when I am done with my dreams I will still have no say or choice if I suffer or die but I promise you my choice to fight will be stronger than ever because I have chosen to LIVE today.”

    2 Comments
  • ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    I was asked about how I addressed my dealing with the changes in supporters in my speech so here are a few "spots"

    "You read survivor stories about how they were constantly surrounded by their support system and could not have asked for any more people gathering together to help them with emotional or moral support. As a recently diagnosed survivor, this is so comforting to read because you think “How am I going to do this?” What they never go on to say is that you will find yourself saying, “In the beginning I was surrounded by many I never expected and that was so beautiful and I will be forever grateful. However, there will be those you will find yourself looking back in time realizing that one or two people you never would expected to go through this without….weren’t there. "What happened at the time where my butt is kicked to the point where I’m seriously considering how bad it really would be if I just stayed in the bathroom and slept on the floor because walking to the next room is like lifting a train. Why was it that at this time everyone seemed to have moved on and the daily phone calls where loved ones were checking on you regularly are now maybe weekly and visits have turned to absence? What did I do?”....

    ...I discussed this and someone suggested that people view survivors as “So Strong” and they are seen as someone who is in control and doing just fine. They simply can’t see what is hiding beneath the hard shell that is portrayed. The fact that you are truly in pieces and scared to death isn’t obvious to others. It was at this time when I realized I was actually jealous of the people I love the most and for me it became very prominent and the loneliness began to just consume me...

    ....I was told, “I think your expectation of people is just too high. I personally won’t offer help if I’m not asked.” Ok, that’s something to consider however, I just wanted to say so badly, “I’m sorry but cancer treatment side effects are no secret. Should I really HAVE to ask people who love me for help? If you see a stranger struggling on the street you would help them right?” Maybe it is stubborn to think this way, but I began to feel like a burden asking for help when honestly I need it more than ever before. Maybe I am being too needy.....

  • ToughEnough's Avatar

    ToughEnough posted an update

    Please don't mistake my sideline humor in my descrptions as ignorance. It was what I had to do to get through all the confusion, pain, loss and lonliness.