Moving Beyond Childhood Cancer
Childhood cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children. Our daughter, Zoe, was diagnosed with leukemia in September of 2010. Her chemotherapy ended December of 2012.
When Zoe was last hospitalized I ran downstairs from the fifth floor where her room was to her oncologist's office on the main floor.
I needed to reschedule her first blood draw post-chemo-end.
I had initially scheduled it for the afternoon on a Tuesday, but later remembered that that was Zoe's class holiday party.
That would not work out.
The head nurse told me, come whenever you want.
These blood draw appointments weren't set in stone like the chemo appointments.
She said with a beaming smile, "this is when things get easy."
Tell that to my heart.
To the rampant thoughts that keep barging in and barking at me at all hours of the day and night.
When Zoe was first diagnosed in 2010, and then at times throughout her treatment, there were times that I constantly felt like I wanted to throw up.
My biggest fear is relapse.
My heart couldn't take that.
I want to weep just thinking of that scenario...to have to tell her it's back.
That all of the work she did these last two years was for naught.
I am usually a very optimistic person.
I believe being positive has gotten us far in this fight.
I have never, throughout this entire ordeal, shed a tear in front of Zoe.
But, I have a fear of celebration because I'm afraid of what may be lurking.
I feel as if I'm being followed and constantly watched by this dark figure.
It hides behind my garage.
It sits in the trees over my house.
With a deep, dark stare.
For a misstep in Zoe's body.
For a chance to come back in and do more damage.
To rub it's hands together and to really get down to business.
Zoe has her first blood test since stopping chemo on Monday.
I am going to be on my game that day, full of smiles and hope for her.
But the whole time I'm going to be nauseous and hoping that dark monster doesn't follow us home.
Please, just leave us alone...
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By Diane Lang
By Diane Lang