Every now and then something happens that causes us to reflect on life. We find our selves thinking about what it means to truly live.
There is this strange thing that happens in our household every time we sit down for a little escape while watching television or a good movie. We wait to see if cancer will be part of the storyline or how many cancer treatment commercials will appear.
Early on these sightings had a way of undoing us. You sit down for a little escape from reality and there it was, pushed right back in front of you. There were times Nancy would just get up and leave the room.
Four years in and we are doing much better now. It is almost a second laugh line in our viewing experience. We cast knowing glances at each other. Kind of a silent checking in to make sure each other is doing okay while the show continues.
This past week presented another one of those moments for me.
The passing of Chadwick Boseman has caused me to wrestle with my own illness in ways I have not for some time.
I want to express condolences to his family and friends. I pray peace, healing, and wholeness upon them. My heart breaks as I can only imagine what they have endured over the past few years.
I understand it is not all about me. Yet our stories share some common elements:
- Diagnosed with colon cancer
- Diagnosed in 2016
That has been enough to cause me to reflect on my own journey. I have also been thinking about some of the lessons we can learn from the way Chadwick Boseman traveled his cancer journey.
Every cancer journey is unique:
There is no one, correct way to travel the path. Very early on in my cancer journey, I decided to be very open and transparent about most of what I was experiencing. Mr. Boseman opted to keep his journey very private and quiet. One is not better than the other.
Every cancer patient travels a journey that is unique to them. Expecting them to act, behave, share, feel, respond, the way another cancer patient has is not helpful. The best thing we can do is walk alongside the person as they travel their personal journey. We can find ways to help them travel their journey well, not expecting or forcing them to travel it the way we would (or think we would). [Read more…]